Category Archives: YouTube Blog – U.K.

The Official YouTube Blog in the U.K.


An engine for your creativity and a home for your culture.

Each year in the UK, we work with a handful of YouTube creators and celebrate the fact they took to YouTube to tell their stories. In the past, we’ve used these campaigns to call out the uniqueness of a creator’s voice, like VICE, or the  ingenuity of their storytelling, like Copa90, or the breathtaking breadth of their appeal, like Zoella. Mostly, we’ve used this moment to celebrate the talent and tenacity of the people and channels who’ve done it entirely on their own, and resolutely, in their own way.

This year, when we thought about who to spotlight, we tied ourselves in knots. Which creator? Which channel? Who’s emblematic of the platform? Who’s super fly? Who’s funky fresh!? And every time we got close to making a decision, we felt like we were missing something really important. The fact being: a focus on one or two creators is the tip of a creative iceberg; the tip of a universe of popular culture that’s driven by you, users and creators. There are close to 200 UK-based channels that have over a million subscribers each. Each! Great Britain’s YouTube stars rank on influence lists that feature Presidents, Olympians and Hollywood royalty. And the content created on YouTube is at the cutting-edge of pop culture, exposing us to new passions, new trends and new faces, daily.

Should we spotlight Joe Sugg, whose Whisper Challenge is now a global phenomenon picked up as a regular bit by Jimmy Fallon’s Tonight Show? Do we call out Humza Arshad who, aside from being plain funny, is using his mega-popularity to spread a message of positivity and peace. Or do we go big on Dina Tokio, who’s taking a totally new type of content - modest fashion - to the masses? We hair pulled. We beard stroked. And finally, we had a brainwave.

There’s no one story that can sum up YouTube - we’re what users and creators make us. You decide what is important. You set the agenda. We are #madeforyou. Which incidentally, is this campaign’s name and we’ve built it around as many creators as we can decently fit into one spot. Eighteen to be precise: Colin, Dina, Humza, Suli, Caspar, Scola, Oli, Kaushal, TomSka, Jemma, Vikkstar, Joe, Patricia, Emma, Lindy, Louise, Marcus and Tanya. Some you’ll already know and love; some you might not yet. But between them, they’ve racked up over 48 million subscribers to their channels - and they couldn’t be more different. From mad scientists to spoken word poets, they reflect the vitality of the UK’s creative spirit and the diversity of our tastes. Which feels like a lot to celebrate. So forgive us for breaking with our own tradition on this one. And for going a little overboard. But it felt like a fittingly YouTube thing to do.

Rich Waterworth, Director of YouTube Marketing in EMEA recently watched Caspar Lee’s Singing Lessons w/Justin Timberlake & Anna Kendrick.


Source: YouTube UK Blog

That’s music to my ears: watch the BRITs live on YouTube

Jarvis Cocker crashing Michael Jackson’s performance. Madonna’s badly behaved cape. Sam Smith silencing a whole arena with his incredible voice. The BRIT Awards with MasterCard has given us some of the most memorable moments in music history. For the third year, you can watch this must-view music moment streamed live on the BRITs channel if you’re based outside of Great Britain. Just tune in at on whatever screen you find yourself closest to: mobile, tablet or TV.

Some of your favorite YouTube stars will be there live to bring you yet more action. YouTube stars Dan & Phil will present the official BRITs YouTube live stream featuring backstage action and more fun and games. Kingsley will be on the red carpet, rubbing shoulders with the biggest stars as they arrive to create more content for the BRITs YouTube channel.

And what stars! This year, international artists like Rihanna will join breakthrough British artists like James Bay for an unforgettable night of live performances. Not one, but TWO holders of YouTube’s prestigious “billion views” club will also perform: Adele and Justin Bieber. That’s alongside live performances from Coldplay, Jess Glynne, Little Mix and The Weeknd. After the live broadcast, individual artists will upload their performances to their own YouTube channels for you to relive again and again, plus there will be catch-up content on the BRITs channel itself.

So, tune in on February 24 at 3 p.m. ET to the official BRITs channel, kick back and as they say in good ol’ Great Britain, prepare yourselves for a right royal knees-up.

Christophe Muller, Head of International Music Partnerships at YouTube and Google Play Music, just watched “Dan and Phil’s Wheel of Wonder With Jack Garrett | BRIT Awards 2016.


Source: YouTube UK Blog

Celebrating what you created, watched and shared in 2015 with #YouTubeRewind and YouTube’s new Trending tab

In 2015, you introduced the world to the latest dance crazes, opened up discussions about diversity and inclusion, and lip-synced in cars and onstage in front of millions. The trends you participated in and the creativity you shared defined the year on YouTube in a bigger way than ever before.

Rewind is our way to help you celebrate some of your favourite moments on YouTube through our official top trending videos of 2015, based on the amount of time people spent watching, sharing, commenting, liking, and more. Topped by one of the year's biggest dance trends, these videos were watched for over 25 million hours and were created by powerhouse channels with over 40 million subscribers between them.

For the first time, not just one, but four television moments made the top Trending Videos list. Three are late night TV videos of widely popular  YouTube trends: the lip sync battle, the in-car singalongs, and the reading of mean tweets. You all love late night TV on YouTube—the time people spent catching up on late-night clips like Corden, Fallon and Kimmel nearly doubled in the last year alone!

When it comes to music, 2015 saw some of our fastest-rising videos of all time. Wiz Khalifa's "See You Again" reached over 1 billion views in just 6 months and Adele reached the year's top 10 in just a few weeks. The top 10 music videos collectively have more than 66 million subscribers, and people spent over 37,000 years playing them in 2015.

...and check out even more top music videos.

In the UK, we also went mad for lip syncs, in-car singalongs and poignant play-days, while we topped and tailed our lists with breathtaking moments from Britain’s Got Talent. Our obsession with Frozen’s “Let it Go” continued for (yet) another year through a brilliant real-life tribute, while FIFA’s “Play Beautiful” commercial and The Force Awakens trailer had us glued to our screens and excited as hell. And of course if wouldn’t be YouTube without some full-on fun courtesy of a marvellous PIXAR-inspired makeup transformation and two mad UK scientists and a giant water balloon....  hit click and enjoy!

Big hits mark out our UK music lists, but with a strong showing from UK artists, including Ellie Goulding, (the legendary) Paul McCartney, Little Mix and of course - Adele ...

And if you love staying on top of the most-anticipated new trailers, hottest music videos, and viral clips from YouTube creators, today we unveil the new YouTube Trending tab. This new tab in your YouTube app delivers the top trending videos directly to your Android, iOS, and desktop device. It's the best way to catch the videos, creators, and trends that people watch, share, and talk about each and every day. See 'em as they take off and before they appear in YouTube Rewind 2016. aAnd for more Rewind fun, check out the YouTube Rewind channel!

Kevin Allocca, Head of Culture & Trends, and the YouTube Rewind team recently watched

Source: YouTube UK Blog

YouTube Kids comes to the UK and Ireland

A world of family-friendly video to explore, created with parents and children in mind

For years, my family and I have watched countless hours of videos on all kinds of topics. We use video to learn and listen to nursery rhymes, to enjoy the shows we love and to ask and answer questions on maths, science, space and beyond … With a world of video in our pockets, there’s a world of possibility and knowledge at our fingertips.

Today, we’re launching YouTube Kids in the UK and Ireland - an app built with parents and children in mind that makes it easier for kids to find videos on topics they want to explore. Since we launched YouTube Kids in the US, it’s been downloaded more than 10 million times by families who rate it among the top kids apps available. This local version of YouTube Kids puts the content we love in the UK and Ireland front and centre - think Captain Barnacles at the touch of a button and CGP Grey on hand to answer tricky questions from curious minds. It’s our first step in reimagining YouTube for families and it’s now available to download for free on Google Play and the App Store. Here are some of the key features:

Bright and playful design
Your 4-year-old may already be a swiping expert, but the app’s design makes it even easier to find Little Baby Bum or the latest video of In The Night Garden. With larger images and bold icons, it’s fast and simple for little thumbs to navigate. And we’ve built in voice search so that even if your child can’t spell or type, they can still find videos of things they’re curious about.

Family-focused content
We’ve built the YouTube Kids app to be a safer version of YouTube, a family-friendly place for kids to explore their imagination and curiosity. You can browse channels and playlists in four categories: Shows, Music, Learning and Explore. Search for videos of particular interest to your family, like why penguins waddle on National Geographic Kids, or watch favorites from Teletubbies, Wallace and Gromit, The Magic Roundabout and Postman Pat. And of course, your kids can watch new series from YouTube channels they already like, including Talking Tom and Friends or find new videos from beloved UK YouTubers like Stampylonghead and his Wonder Quest.

Parental controls
We’ve built options into the app that help you control the experience for your kids and put parents in the driving seat.

  • Learn how the app works: When parents open YouTube Kids, they learn upfront how our systems choose and recommend content and how to flag videos. We always try to make the videos available in the app family-friendly, but no system is perfect. So if you ever find a video you’re concerned about, please flag it. This helps make YouTube Kids better for everyone. 
  • Search settings: We’ll also prompt you to make a choice about how broadly you want your child to explore - turn search on to access millions of family-friendly videos, or turn search off to restrict your child’s experience to a more limited set. Either way, parents decide the right experience for their family from the get-go. 
  • Timer: Let the app be the bad guy with a built-in timer that lets you limit kids’ screen time. The app alerts your child when the session is over, so you don’t have to. (You’re welcome. ;)
  • Sound settings: Sometimes you need a little peace and quiet! You have an option to turn off background music and sound effects, so your kids can keep watching while you catch a breath.
  • Custom passcode: Parents have the ability to set their own passcode, and to access settings and other parental information in the app.
  • Logged out experience: The app is currently a signed-out experience with no ties to an account. We’ve also removed all features that are linked to an account like uploading, sharing, liking, etc.

YouTube Kids on the big screen
You can now also watch YouTube Kids as a family on your big screen using Chromecast, Apple TV, game consoles or a smart TV.

We’re so excited to bring YouTube Kids to the UK and Ireland, and look forward to your ideas too so that we can better help your family explore, learn and sing along. And so from my family to yours, enjoy!
Posted by Greg Dray, Dad of one and Head of Kids and Learning Partnerships at YouTube, who recently watched TuTiTu's language learning series with his 2 year-old daughter to introduce her to Spanish. Hola!

Source: YouTube UK Blog

FA Cup Nerdfighteria: Football Fan Culture on YouTube

John Green is many things: a Vlogbrother, the author of "The Fault In Our Stars" and "Paper Towns", and part of the driving force behind YouTube conference VidCon. But in addition to these he is also a dedicated football fan, funneling revenue from the Hankgames channel into the groundbreaking AFC Wimbledon club to secure shirt (and now shorts) sponsorship. 

However, John is also a passionate fan of  Liverpool FC, and so found his allegiances tested when the teams drew each other in the FA Cup. His vlog of the trip to London for the fixture is a must-see, as are highlights of the game itself (which include a fantastic free kick from Steven Gerrard). 


John isn't the only football fan choosing to capture his love of the game to share on YouTube, as the past few seasons have seen fan channels and content springing up and finding success. The Redmen TV has tracked the highs and lows of following Liverpool since 2010, Arsenal Fan TV has done likewise for the North London club (striking gold earlier this season when fellow fans clashed after a loss) and the Manchester United-backing Full Time Devils, whose post-match interviews have turned vocal fan Andy Tate into a YouTube and Vine star. This season has also seen The True Geordie get into his stride, documenting his reactions to Newcastle United's volatile Premiership run, picking up over 60,000 subscribers in the process -- six times the following of the club's official channel

Life as a fan is also given a more traditional documentary treatment from football specialists Copa 90, who travelled to Seattle to capture the commitment of the Sounders' ultras, attended the most ferocious fixtures across Europe with the Derby Days series and sent Football Virgin Maya Jama on a personal quest to both learn about the game and find her team. 

So there you have it: it's a great time to be a football fan on YouTube, so go join the conversation with fans (and rivals) of your team voicing their passion on the platform. You could even become 'internet famous' in the process... 

Jamie Dolling, YouTube UK, recently watched "Nike Academy: Winter Training"

Source: YouTube UK Blog

YouTube Rewind 2014: A Tour of Europe

YouTube Rewind offers many things: an excuse to produce epic videos, the opportunity to crown a mutant giant spider dog Winner of The Internet and the chance to check out singing nuns in Italy’s version of “The Voice”. 

The fun doesn’t stop there, as there are almost as many YouTube Rewind channels as there are countries in the world, each of them listing the Top 10 trending and music videos of the year. This means that you can discover that in France viewers fixated on rapping Mario Brothers, that a young girl talking to a chick stole Spanish hearts in 2014, or that Polish pranksters baiting police with cookie cellphones caught the country’s interest. You can also find out what happens if you feed Danish classical musicians super-hot chilis while they play, what different languages sound like to foreigners or even experience a Reindeer roadblock in Lapland — very festive, although the Finnish driver isn’t so enchanted.

There’s plenty more where that came from, so if you’re at a loose end come tour the world of video with YouTube Rewind. Who knows, you may even take a shine to Romania’s version of The Lonely Island… 

Jamie Dolling, YouTube UK, recently watched "Walking on beautiful clean ice in Slovakian Mountains"

Source: YouTube UK Blog

What’s Up On YouTube: YouTube Thrills The Radio Stars

Russell Brand, Zoe Ball and Chris Moyles aren’t necessarily names that you would place side-by-side, but for the purposes of this post, that’s exactly what is going to happen. The reason for this being that all three of them have launched their own YouTube channels, variously documenting their lives, transforming take away-style cuisine or calling for a no-holds-barred revolution in political engagement across the UK and beyond… 

While famous folk taking to YouTube is nothing new — Tulisa responding directly to the release of a sex tape, Bill Bailey blogging from his bunker or model Ruth Crilly recommending beauty products and sharing her life — it’s great to see people with established careers in TV, radio or film using YouTube to deliver personal projects, connect more directly with their audiences or simply try something new. 

However, if revolution, transforming take aways or exploring life post-breakfast show fame don’t appeal, the YouTube UK spotlight channel hosts a selection of viral videos and more, and seeks to meet your musical needs. 

Jamie Dolling, YouTube UK, recently watched “Phil Jagielka Goal Vs Liverpool by 442oons”

Source: YouTube UK Blog

What’s Up On YouTube: One Album Per Hour With Beardyman

The music-making process is traditionally seen as prolonged and painful: weeks spent burning through budget in a darkened studio, wrestling with recording equipment and sweating over songwriting. Beatbox maestro Beardyman is having none of that -- he's planning to make an album an hour in a series of live shows on YouTube which harness the power of his audience and input from a celebrity record producer.

The series starts with Jack Black at the controls from 9pm this Sunday, September 14, as Beardyman prepares to sift through song titles submitted online. He'll then lay down a bassline, instrumentation and conjure up verse and chorus using nothing more than his mouth, his mind and a mass of electronic trickery (including the all-new Beardytron_5000 mkIII). The weeks to come will see Peter Serafinowicz, Tim Minchin and Daniel Sloss submit to the same process.

So tune in for an hour of music, madness and improvisation with a strong chance of comedy live on YouTube this Sunday. Not to mention the opportunity to watch Beardyman sweat and presumably fast-forward through the 'difficult second album' barrier. For more trending videos head to the YouTube UK spotlight channel and if talk of tunes has you wanting more, /music has playlists to suit every mood.

Jamie Dolling, YouTube UK, recently watched "Kutiman -- Thru You Too -- GIVE IT UP".

Source: YouTube UK Blog

What’s Up On YouTube: Following Football — The Premiership

The Premiership enters its third week this Saturday and the league has already produced its fair share of surprises, with Manchester United without a win to their name and Swansea joining Manchester City, Spurs and Chelsea with maximum points from their games to date. 

This season, fans of both clubs and the league as a whole can stay abreast of developments direct from the clubs themselves thanks to video updates from all of the Premiership sides bar Manchester United and Sunderland via official YouTube channels. Channels typically offer previews of the weekend’s games, post-match analysis, game highlights, glimpses behind-the-scenes, interviews with players, manager press conferences and more. 

Between them the Premiership sides boast around 1.3 million subscribers, with Chelsea (360K), Manchester City (300K), Liverpool (290K) and Arsenal (138K) currently topping the table. So, if nothing else, as a fan of Spurs, Swansea, Hull City, Aston Villa, West Ham, Everton, West Brom, Southampton, Stoke, Leicester City, Newcastle, Crystal Palace, Burnley or Queens Park Rangers, subscribe now and boost their profile on the site, while ensuring that the latest uploads are delivered straight to your inbox. 

If football doesn’t quite do it for you, the UK Spotlight channel or music page should have something to catch your eye (or ear) with the latest trending videos, themed playlists and more. 

Jamie Dolling, YouTube UK, recently watched “T Pain loses the locks and comes back to music (GGN)”

Source: YouTube UK Blog

What’s Up on YouTube: Tomorrowland and Beyond

This weekend Tomorrowland stages the second of its sold-out three-day parties in Boom, Belgium, with DJ talent like Tiësto, Steve Aoki and Above & Beyond animating the crowd and streaming five hours of sets live on Friday, Saturday and Sunday here on YouTube

The festival has racked up almost 400 million views, its series of official aftermovies from 2011, 2012  and 2013 accounting for almost 260 million of those clicks, proving the popularity of dance music events on YouTube. 

EXIT Festival, in Serbia, for example — named the Best Major European Festival in 2013 — teamed up with YouTube electronic music powerhouse UKF this year to produce "Fresh From The Fort", a series of daily updates featuring artists including Gorgon City, Skrillex and Andy C talking music and sampling the local grog. The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival has streamed on YouTube the past few years, famously bringing Tupac back to life with a holographic performance seen around the world. 

Boiler Room are also no stranger to streaming sets from festivals across the world, with the likes of Laurent Garnier, Bill Brewster, and Digitalism appearing under their banner from Amsterdam to Croatia and beyond. 

So if you can’t make it to The Great Outdoors to join the party in person — or if you want to relive magical musical moments after the event — then YouTube may have the answer. For more music, head here, and if it’s trending videos you fancy, the UK Spotlight Channel may well have something for you. 

Jamie Dolling, YouTube UK, recently watched "Weird Al Yankovic -- Word Crimes"

Source: YouTube UK Blog