YouTube has added another feature to its enhancements tool, allowing you to automate the process of blurring out people's faces in your photos. Its makers are quick to add that it's still an emerging technology, and that it may still miss out on faces depending on lighting obstructions and video quality. YouTube cites footage from human rights issues for bringing the idea forward, where identification of those involved could prove dangerous. You'll be able to preview how it looks, and if you choose to include the blurred option, a new copy is made to avoid losing the unedited original. The feature is rolling out to the site today -- now you just need a decent video camera.
YouTube Blog- Face blurring: when footage requires anonymity
As citizens continue to play a critical role in supplying news and human rights footage from around the world, YouTube is committed to creating even better tools to help them. According to the international human rights organization WITNESS' Cameras Everywhere report, "No video-sharing site or hardware manufacturer currently offers users the option to blur faces or protect identity."
YouTube is excited to be among the first.
Today we're launching face blurring - a new tool that allows you to obscure faces within videos with the click of a button.
Whether you want to share sensitive protest footage without exposing the faces of the activists involved, or share the winning point in your 8-year-old's basketball game without broadcasting the children's faces to the world, our face blurring technology is a first step towards providing visual anonymity for video on YouTube.
Blurring faces on YouTube is simple. Once you've chosen the video that you'd like to edit within our Video Enhancements tool, go to Additional Features and click the "Apply" button below Blur All Faces. Before you publish, you will see a preview of what your video will look like with faces blurred. When you save the changes to your video, a new copy is created with the blurred faces. You will then be given the option to delete the original video.
This is emerging technology, which means it sometimes has difficulty detecting faces depending on the angle, lighting, obstructions and video quality. It's possible that certain faces or frames will not be blurred. If you are not satisfied with the accuracy of the blurring as you see it in the preview, you may wish to keep your video private.
Visual anonymity in video allows people to share personal footage more widely and to speak out when they otherwise may not.
Because human rights footage, in particular, opens up new risks to the people posting videos and to those filmed, it's important to keep in mind other ways to protect yourself and the people in your videos.
YouTube is proud to be a destination where people worldwide come to share their stories, including activists. Along with efforts like the Human Rights Channel and Citizentube that curate these voices, we hope that the new technologies we're rolling out will facilitate the sharing of even more stories on our platform.