YouTube is testing a new feature called Clips which allows users to make short, shareable videos out of creators’ live streams.
Clipping is a standard feature in live streaming and it’s finally being adopted by YouTube.
If the popularity of Clips on Twitch is any indication, this could prove to be one of the more significant additions to YouTube in recent memory.
Clips lets creators and viewers grab footage from a live stream, between 5 to 60 seconds in length, and share it with other people.
Viewers tend to create clips from streams when there’s a funny moment, an insightful quote, an embarrassing blooper, an impressive play in a video game, and so on.
It’s considerably more convenient to share to a 15-second clip than 3+ hour live stream, for example.
One use case that immediately comes to mind is the Google Search Central streams with John Mueller.
When I cover these streams for Search Engine Journal I link out to the whole 1 hour video. Now I can create clips and link to Mueller’s exact quotes.
A clip has its own URL associated with it and links back to the creator’s channel. Every time a viewer clips a stream and shares it they’re potentially helping the channel gain more viewers.
YouTube is late to the party on this one, but its Clips feature isn’t ready for a wide release yet. An experimental version is being launched in testing to start.
Here’s everything we know about YouTube Clips at this point.
Clips on YouTube: Currently in Testing
YouTube is testing Clips with a small group of creators while gathering feedback to guide further development of this feature.
Clips can be created during a creator’s live stream and from the video on demand (VOD) uploaded afterward.
If you’re viewing content from one of the channels included in the test group, you’ll see a clip icon under the video which looks like a pair of scissors.
Tap the clip icon and you can select a portion of the video to share with others.
Add a title and click “Share Clip” and YouTube will generate a URL for you to share.
The clip will be played on the original video and loop repeatedly.
Both creators and signed in viewers can create Clips. Clips can be shared on social channels or via direct communications (for example, email or text).
While clips can only be made from certain channels during the test period, all viewers can create clips from those channels.
When a user creates a clip it’s stored in a dedicated tab which will house all the clips the user creates across YouTube.
YouTube doesn’t specify which channels are part of the test group so you will have to look for the icon.
For more information, and a complete video demonstration of Clips in action, see the video below: