Last week, I spoke with James Hazell on BBC Radio Suffolk about the new film classifications and how they can be applied to online video streaming sites.
I also discussed YouTube’s ban on videos that contain or encourage dangerous pranks that endanger people or could cause harm to people copying them.
Following a public consultancy of more than 10,000 people, the BBFC (British Board of Film Classification) has now revised its classifications to make it more consistent across platforms, including online services.
David Austin, Chief Executive Officer at the BBFC, said: “Over the last five years the way we consume film and video has changed beyond all recognition. That’s why it’s so important that there is consistency between what people watch on and offline. The research shows that parents and teenagers want us to give them the information and guidance that they need to view what’s right for them.
We’re here to listen to what people want, which is why they trust our age ratings. So it’s encouraging to know that we’ve been classifying content in line with what people want and expect when it comes to difficult themes around credible real life scenarios. We also know that people are more comfortable with issues such as action violence, if it’s in a way that they are expecting – such as a Bond or Bourne film. We are updating our standards around depictions of sexual violence and very strong sex references to reflect changes in public attitudes.”
In discussing YouTube enforcing rules banning videos which either put people in danger or promoted acts which might lead people copying those acts to either suffer harm or place others in danger, we discussed recent movies such as the Netflix production; Birdbox which led some people to challenge others to go about day-to-day activities whilst blindfolded and may have led a driver in the US to become involved in a motor vehicle accident.
On a lighter note, I owned up to buying a pair of ‘Neo from the Matrix’ inspired sunglasses and my continuing search for ‘The Dude’s Cardigan’ from The Big Lebowski.
You can listen in to the stream, by clicking on the play button above, or you can subscribe to The Gadget Man podcast using the links above listen in via iTunes, Tune-in, Google Podcasts and more! Don’t forget to show your support by ‘liking’, ‘sharing’ and ‘subscribing’.
I‘ve just received an email from YouTube. It informs me and millions of others, that we are being dumped from their advertising program. This apparently is to stop ‘spammers, impersonators and other “bad actors”‘ from making money from their ‘eco-system’.
**UPDATE** 21 Feb 2018
YouTube have emailed again today to confirm the cessation of advertising revenue. The rollout of these changes was documented by Ken Heron on his YouTube channel where advertising was removed from his videos according to his dashboard. Ken meets with YouTube’s new rules and should in fact continue to receive monetisation.
Ken Heron’s YouTube video relating to this change is below
YouTube’s most recent letter confirming removal of monetisation is below. Whilst my Youtube video’s are in no way Studio Quality, they are not Spammy, Impersonating anyone or re-uploading video (unless where permission is giving such as SpaceX).
In reality, they are removing the ability for non-professionals to make any kind of money from their advertising platform (I can tell you it is a very small amount).
Simply put, people such as Casey Neistat, Marques Brownlee (MKBHD) and other extremely successful ‘YouTubers’ will continue to rake in millions in advertising revenue, whilst the less fortunate will lose all forms of income from this platform.
Whilst there is nothing wrong with being paid for high quality content, successful YouTube creators also earn massive amounts of revenue from advertising and affiliate links. Basically they continue to get the best of all worlds, whilst the less fortunate get completely cut off.
In all honesty my videos on YouTube make a pittance through advertising, however I also have a Patreon channel. This is a 3rd party channel which many YouTubers current use to make a sensible living through their hard work. If you feel somewhat inclined to support The Gadget Man site and Youtube channel, you can use Patreon to do this. Not only will this help encourage me to produce more content, it will also help towards buying better equipment to produce content.
YouTube is owned by Google who’s corporate code of conduct is Don’t Be Evil.
“2017 marked a tough year for many of you, with several issues affecting our community and the revenue earned from advertising through the YouTube Partner Program (YPP). Despite those issues more creators than ever are earning a living on YouTube, with the number of channels making over six figures up over 40% year-over-year. In 2018, a major focus for everyone at YouTube is protecting our creator ecosystem and ensuring your revenue is more stable.
As Susan mentioned in December, we’re making changes to address the issues that affected our community in 2017 so we can prevent bad actors from harming the inspiring and original creators around the world who make their living on YouTube. A big part of that effort will be strengthening our requirements for monetization so spammers, impersonators, and other bad actors can’t hurt our ecosystem or take advantage of you, while continuing to reward those who make our platform great.
Back in April of 2017, we set a YPP eligibility requirement of 10,000 lifetime views. While that threshold provided more information to determine whether a channel followed our community guidelines and policies, it’s been clear over the last few months that we need a higher standard.
Starting today we’re changing the eligibility requirement for monetization to 4,000 hours of watchtime within the past 12 months and 1,000 subscribers. We’ve arrived at these new thresholds after thorough analysis and conversations with creators like you. They will allow us to significantly improve our ability to identify creators who contribute positively to the community and help drive more ad revenue to them (and away from bad actors). These higher standards will also help us prevent potentially inappropriate videos from monetizing which can hurt revenue for everyone.
On February 20th, 2018, we’ll also implement this threshold across existing channels on the platform, to allow for a 30 day grace period. On that date, channels with fewer than 1,000 subs or 4,000 watch hours will no longer be able to earn money on YouTube. When they reach 1,000 subs and 4,000 watch hours they will be automatically re-evaluated under strict criteria to ensure they comply with our policies. New channels will need to apply, and their application will be evaluated when they hit these milestones.
Though these changes will affect a significant number of channels, 99% of those affected were making less than $100 per year in the last year, with 90% earning less than $2.50 in the last month. Any of the channels who no longer meet this threshold will be paid what they’ve already earned based on our AdSense policies. After thoughtful consideration, we believe these are necessary compromises to protect our community.
Of course, size alone is not enough to determine whether a channel is suitable for monetization, so we’ll continue to use signals like community strikes, spam, and other abuse flags to ensure we’re protecting our creator community from bad actors. As we continue to protect our platform from abuse, we want to remind all of you to follow YouTube’s Community Guidelines, Monetization Basics & Policies, Terms of Service, and Google AdSense program policies, as violating any of these may lead to removal from the YouTube Partner Program.
While this change will tackle the potential abuse of a large but disparate group of smaller channels, we also know that the bad action of a single, large channel can also have an impact on the community and how advertisers view YouTube. We’ll be working to schedule conversations with our creators in the months ahead so we can hear your thoughts and ideas and what more we can do to tackle that challenge.
One of YouTube’s core values is to provide anyone the opportunity to earn money from a thriving channel, and while our policies will evolve over time, our commitment to that value remains. Those of you who want more details around this change, or haven’t yet reached this new 4,000 hour/1,000 subscriber threshold can continue to benefit from our Creator Academy, our Help Center, and all the resources on the Creator Site to grow your channels.
Even though 2017 was a challenging year, thanks to creators like you, it was full of the moments that make YouTube such a special place. Creators large and small, established and emerging, transformed their talent and originality into videos that captivated over a billion people around the world. They made us laugh, taught us about our world and warmed our hearts. We’re confident the steps we’re taking today will help protect and grow our inspiring community well into the future.
Neal Mohan, Chief Product Officer and Robert Kyncl, Chief Business Officer”
Welcome to the 100th Episode of The Gadget Man, this time I set myself a very big task of LIVE STREAMING a technology review of the brand new Cross Peerless Trackr Pen. I hope you enjoy it below. The review itself starts at about 2 minutes in!
A few weeks back I was invited to London to attend the launch of the new Cross Peerless Trackr, the worlds first trackable pen.
Cross have been making writing instruments since 1846, so it was a pleasant surprise to see an established traditional brand embracing technology without losing what makes the company appealing.
The pen has Bluetooth technology carefully embedded inside it which works alongside what’s called ‘Crowd GPS’. This means that if you are unfortunate enough to misplace you pen or worse have it stolen, a league of other Trackr users immediately start helping your reunite your prized pen. When a person running the Trackr app comes within up to 30 metres of your pen, they detect it and immediately an anonymous message is sent to you informing your of it’s current position.
Upon receiving the notification, you can then go to that location and using the app on your own phone, you cause the pen to light up and sound an alarm to give you an indication of it’s exact position, after a little bit of searching or discussion with it’s new temporary owner, the pen can be returned to you.
Conversely, the pen itself can be used to locate your phone, so if you are hunting around the house in the morning for your mobile, simply hold down the button on the side of the pen and your phone will start ringing!
The pen itself comes in a very nice presentation box along with instructions for pairing and using the pen, spare batteries, a nice suede case sleeve for the pen and your guarantee from Cross.
Once taken out of the box, the pen feels just weighty enough to feel comfortable and writes smoothly. As a pen on it’s own, it was nice and of course the ‘techie’ addition of the tracking appealed to me too. You should bear in mind that the crowd GPS functionality requires a ‘crowd’, so losing it in the middle of a deserted field isn’t going to help. Saying that, most towns have a large number of Trackr users and Central London was packed with them. You can even see how many people use Trackr by visiting their website.
If you are looking for a high end pen for meetings or a nice birthday or anniversary gift for someone, look no further than the Cross Peerless Trackr 125 Pen, available from all good pen shops for around £212.00.
Thanks to Rachel and Dan at Small Man Media and of course Cross for their kind invitation.
Earlier in the year, we reviewed the Kodak PixPro SP360, we thought it was a superb camera capable of recording YouTube compatible 360 movies, so we’re really pleased that Kodak have announced an upgraded SP360 which is now capable of recording in 4K.
The original SP360 was capable of capturing video in up to 1440×1440 HD, this video was then unwrapped to product scrollable 360 video which could be uploaded to YouTube and viewed interactively.
There has been a great deal of excitement concerning the KODAK PIXPRO SP360 Action Camera and it’s been popular in the tech press and TV, this has placed Kodak at the forefront of this technology.
The SP360 4k Camera captures 360-degree field of view in multiple directions via its dome shaped lens design and can be panned not only 360-degrees horizontally, but also up and down with a host of different vantage points and views for playback post capture.
At the official press launch, Mariame Cisse, Marketing Manager of JK Imaging Ltd said “The KODAK PIXPRO SP360-4K revolutionize video recording and how you see and experience the World All Around You. This is the next step to Evolution for 360 degrees Cameras. You can now create the most pristine videos and photos in 4K and Direct and Act your own Virtual Reality movie”.
SP 360 4K – Features
12 megapixels, BSICMOS sensor
Fixed focus lens (F.2.8) that takes 360° spherical images
Viewing options: Dome (235°), Front, Global (360°), Ring, Segment (180° front and 180°rear) or Panorama mode
High speed videos 1280 x 720 (120fps); plays back with normal 50fps speed.
4K HD videos in 2028 x 2028 (50fps)
Dimensions/weight: 46.5 x 50 x 53 mm/121 g
The KODAK PIXPRO SP360-4K will be sold with varying accessory bundles depending on geographical region. It will be available in October this year in Europe. For more information, please visit: kodakpixpro.com/SP360
Hopefully we will have a chance to try out the new features soon including the live broadcast features.
Like many, we are really looking forward to the next trilogy of Star Wars movies coming our way, starting in December 2015 with Episode VII The Force Awakens.
The new trilogy is being directed by J.J. Abrams, who is famous for adding plentiful lens flare into his movies. There’s been much discussion on Twitter and Facebook about whether the new Star Wars movies will inherit this trait along with maintaining the visible style of the previous ‘Hexalogy’.
Right up to the release of the teaser last week YouTube became awash with fan made versions, some good and some bad, we’ve added a selection of the above, including the official version with added lens flare and George Lucas’ ‘Special Edition’.
If you have found some Star Wars Episode VII The Force Awakens teasers that you think should be added to the list, include them in a comment below!!
Here at Gadget Man, we appear to go for the heavy hitters. I don’t think we’ve looked at a device that is below £100 yet, so today we’re going to change the pace with an insanely cool piece of affordable tech. Let’s take a look at the Chromecast. Continue reading Google Chromecast,→