YouTube has finally added a new feature to their website: it's called YouTube Annotations and you can see it here in action.
It is subtext for videos basically although they prefer to call it annotations to make it clear that they can be used for a broader purpose.
Subtitles usually only provide a textual version of the voice acting in videos and to a lesser extent scene descriptions.
YouTube Annotations can be used to add information to the video. This is a great chance to add value to a video but poses the risk that this may be misused for advertisement.
As you can see above, annotations can be used for all kind of things including linking to other contents on the site.
The main issue that YouTube users have with annotations is that they interrupt the viewing of the video. If one or multiple comments are spawned on the screen, or take up the entire screen as seen before, it is seen by many as a huge annoyance on the site.
There are two options to deal with annotations on the site.
You can hover the mouse cursor over individual annotations to close them. When you hover the mouse over them a close icon (an x) is displayed that you can click on to remove it.
You can also click on the video settings button in the play toolbar and switch annotations for that video off completely which is often the better option especially if multiple annotations are used throughout it.
Update: Google added an option to YouTube to disable annotations for all videos on the site. You do need to sign in to YouTube for that though using a Google account or your old YouTube account.
Open the YouTube settings with a click on your profile image on the top right and another click on the YouTube settings icon.
Switch to playback once the settings have loaded and uncheck the "Show annotations, channel promotions and interactive cards on videos" preference.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.