YouTube Shorts is adding watermarks to discourage cross-platform sharing

YouTube Shorts is adding watermarks to discourage cross-platform sharing
Image Credits: YouTube

YouTube finally got tired of its shorts getting cross-shared to TikTok with no accreditation. Now, when you download a video from YouTube Shorts, it will have a YouTube watermark.

Yesterday, a YouTube community manager broke the news to users on a support thread. The post read: “If you’re a creator who downloads your Shorts from YouTube Studio to share across other platforms, you’ll now find a watermark added to your downloaded content. We’ve added a watermark to the Shorts you download so your viewers can see that the content you’re sharing across platforms can be found on YouTube Shorts.”

She added: “This is rolling out over the next few weeks on desktop, and we plan to expand to mobile over the coming months.”

Admittedly, YouTube is to blame for this, since the company was late to introduce the feature.  TikTok has had a watermark with the user’s name on its videos since it launched in 2016. That way, if a viewer comes across the downloaded video on another app, they will be redirected to TikTok. 

Because TikTok is in tune with its users, it also made sure that the watermark bounces around the screen if someone tries to crop it out.

Instagram, on the other hand, is taking a different approach to the situation, announcing in a recent update that it will suppress content that has another app’s watermark to help users ‘rank for originality.’ Instagram head Adam Mosseri explains: “If you create something from scratch, you should get more credit than if you are resharing something that you found from someone else. We’re going to do more to try and value original content more, particularly compared to reposted content.”

As it stands, content downloaded from Instagram Reels still does not have a watermark, and the company has not shared plans to add one anytime soon.

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