YouTube comments have historically been a toxic cesspool, but Google's video platform is finally making some changes to give creators and money-makers even more control over the conversations that take place below their videos. Today, YouTube announced a new set of commenting tools meant to help creators engage with and build their communities.
There are now six handy comment moderations tools in total, and the first half of them are more playful than administrative. YouTube now allows for pinned comments so creators can show off and promote their favorite zingers from the peanut gallery. Creators can also interact directly with commenters through "creator hearts" that stand out from the usual thumbs up/thumbs down system, and whenever a creator chimes in on their own channel, their comment will be highlighted with their username and "a pop of color" so viewers will know it came from the source. (Plus the all-important verified checkmark, of course.)
On a more mundane level, YouTube rolled out the ability to choose additional moderators, blacklist certain words and flag inappropriate comments for review earlier this year. Back in September, the company also unveiled a new YouTube Heroes program that allowed volunteers to moderate various aspects of the site. While that program riled some community members, the new tools should put a little more control back in the hands of creators themselves.