YouTube debuted a bunch of new features Wed night (we tend to do major pushes every few weeks as anyone who tracks the site closely can observe). Included in yesterday’s release is Active Sharing, a fun opt-in thing that allows you to publish what you’re watching in real time and let others watch those videos too.
Active Sharing is the type of feature that makes YouTube special because it continues to evolve the community viewing experience. And it’s one:many – even if a small number opt in to be followed, anyone can follow them without needing to log in or expose their viewing preferences.
I hope we do a lot more Active Sharing-type features this year reinforcing the network effects within our community. In 2006 the YouTube team essentially helped create the checklist of basic features users expect to see in an online video experience. And while we continue to strengthen that core set, new “wows” are important. Especially when the “wow” is dependent upon and enabled by having a really big enthusiastic community because then it’s harder for other sites to mimic successfully.