YouTube Invests in an ‘Authoritative’ Multi-Format News Experience

YouTube invests in a multi-format news watching experience.
Credit: YouTube

YouTube wants its users to be able to find news more easily from “authoritative sources across video on demand, live streams, podcasts, and Shorts.”

As The Verge reports, the video streaming giant is taking a very different approach to news than Meta and X — formerly Twitter.

“We’re announcing new ways to help viewers dive deeper into the latest news stories and support journalists in creating dynamic news content,” YouTube explains in a blog post.

“In today’s digital news landscape, viewers are increasingly seeking out many different types of content, and we’re seeing newsrooms and journalists evolve to meet that need. Now, we’re sharing two initiatives to further improve the news watching journey on YouTube,” continues Google-owned YouTube.

The first initiative is an “immersive watch page experience” for news stories on the video platform. This news watch page will “pull together content from authoritative sources” across YouTube’s various video content delivery systems, like video on demand, streams, podcasts, and Shorts onto a single watch page. From here, users can consume long-form content or get quick bite-sized Shorts videos to help them catch up on a topic.

These watch pages are available for specific news topics, which can be accessed by clicking on a newspaper icon on the YouTube homepage or within the platform’s search results. The feature is rolling out “over time” for mobile users in about 40 countries, with desktop and living room integration to come later.

“We believe this updated news experience will help viewers access a range of credible and diverse voices when they want to dive into a news topic,” explains YouTube.

YouTube invests in a multi-format news watching experience.
Credit: YouTube | For illustrative purposes only

YouTube shows how the new immersive news page will show viewers other relevant videos about a news topic, such as floods in Pakistan, from relevant and authoritative sources. In YouTube’s example, the videos come from well-known legacy media outlets such as Associated Press, Sky News, and CBS. It is unclear precisely how the suggested and relevant videos will be selected and served to users. It is also not obvious how a user’s profile and viewing history may affect what related news content they see.

“Now more than ever, we remain committed to connecting people to high-quality information they can trust, particularly in times of elections, unrest, and natural disasters,” says YouTube.

The company’s second news-focused initiative is the Shorts Innovation Program for News, “an initiative to strengthen news organizations’ short-form video capabilities through financial grants and specialist support.”

To start, YouTube says it is working with more than 20 organizations in 10 countries, providing a total of $1.6 million in support.

“Participants are selected based on having a strong existing long-form video presence on YouTube, but are looking to improve and expand their Shorts news content creation. Over the next year, YouTube specialists will work with news organizations, including Univision in the U.S., AFP in France, and Mediacorp in Singapore on Shorts content strategy and video production best practices,” the company says.

YouTube aims for news outlets to lean into short-form content and embrace using short-form video to deliver news to viewers.

“Together, these updates help underscore YouTube’s commitment to connecting viewers with credible, timely, and substantive news content as well as our dedication to supporting news publishers in experimenting with emerging video news formats,” YouTube concludes.

Image credits: YouTube