According to the 9th edition of Domo’s Data Never Sleeps infographic, YouTube users stream 694 thousand hours of video every minute.
You may not be contributing significantly to those stats, but chances are you’ve watched a YouTube video this week. Here are four YouTube hacks to improve and enhance your YouTube experience.
Two cautions about these YouTube Hacks:
- YouTube sometimes gets grumpy about some functionalities like these. I can’t promise they won’t disappear overnight.
- One of the most requested YouTube hacks is the ability to download YouTube videos. YouTube really hates these, so they come and go. And some of these sites are a little iffy. But you can Google options.
Grab a GIF from any YouTube Video
Create a GIF with any YouTube video by adding the word “gif” before “youtube” in the URL.
Add the word “gif” to…
which will transform to…
The new URL will switch to a site called gifs.com where you can choose a few seconds and make some adjustments. Note: use the actual YouTube link in your browser bar, not the shortcut link you get from the share button.
Remove ads and suggested videos
Create a clutter-free viewing experience with a site called VideoLink.
Once you paste your YouTube on the site, you’ll get a viewing experience without ads, comments or other video suggestions. This is a great hack for teachers and anyone showing a video to a group to avoid potentially embarrassing next video suggestions or inappropriate ads. The site says it has permission from YouTube to offer this service, so unlike some of these other hacks, this one should survive YouTube updates.
Add controls to your YouTube viewer
Video.link gives you a super clean site to escape the YouTube clutter, but that’s its only trick. Add even more controls to your watching experience with browser extensions Magic Actions Personalized Movie Theater and Enhancer for YouTube.
Magic Actions has a cute user interface that sits in your play bar. You can apply filters and even make the video spin in a circle.
But when I installed Enhancer, Magic Actions wouldn’t work. And although Enhancer is much more serious, it had features I liked even better, such as speed controls and a quick volume booster.
Watch a video live with others
Watch a YouTube video live with anyone with a link by adding three dashes between the “you” and the “tube” in the URL (not the shortcut version).
Add three dashes to…
which will transform to…
and you’ll see…
Now you can go live and invite others to hang out with you while you watch the video together.