How to hangout on YouTube with Google+ friends

Today with two sentences Google’s Brian Glick introduced a Google+ feature that lets us hangout with friends while watching a YouTube video. With the click of  “Watch with your friends, Start a Google+ hangout,”  you can share your YouTube viewing experience. Pretty cool!   If you’re not on Google+ yet, a hangout lets you video chat online with any of your Google+ contacts one at a time or dozens at a time.


Here’s what the Hangout YouTube dashboard looks like. Everybody was having dinner when I was experimenting so I haven’t actively had a hangout on YouTube with my Google+ friends yet.

A few weeks ago at Chicago’s start-up and venture capital forum TechWeek, Steve Grove, head of News and Politics at YouTube, walked us through  several improved features and Dave McClure of 500 start-ups repeatedly urged businesses to use YouTube to drive up exposure.  With addition of this simple and seamless feature I can see why.
At TechWeek, Grove spoke about several YouTube features. CitizenTube is news of the day curated in partnership with Storyful. He also walked us through YouTubeTrends, which shows trending topics and videos across 16 categories including movies, news, politics, sport and virals. The YouTube media Center includes a press library, stats and b-roll. The YouTubeTrends dashboard promises to bring it all together. We can sort by age and place but I have to say that even with the sort on it looked to me like everyone of every age was watching the same thing.
I asked Grove when YouTube watchers would be able to sort by zipcode through the dash and he said YouTube wasn’t quite there yet. Today, YouTube announced that it has settled with the National Music Publishers Association of America, giving them a share of ad revenue. That’s good because 40% of the YouTube audience is sharing music videos , according to Digital Media Wire.

These developments all bode well for Google and its Google+ fledgling social network. Now that I can hangout on YouTube,  Google+ has almost won me over — it’s something I love to do. If it were not for my recalcitrant  FaceBook friends I’d be spending way more time at Google+.

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  • Gary Kopycinski

    Hey, Sally. Appreciate your insights on Google+. While I do see advantages to Google+ over Facebook (for example, I will finally be able to train my pinky to find the + key), and do believe it has more intuitive features than Facebook, not quite sure yet how much I like it overall.

    My primary reason for wanting social networking is for business purposes. One big drawback with Google+ right now is the lack of people. Perhaps after Google opens the doors a bit wider it will all make more sense. Till then, I’m still on the fence.

    • Sally

      Thanks, Gary. Google+ is a baby network right now and we don’t know what it will grow into. I actually hope it will be a kind of terminus of social networks and when it reaches that point it will have a place for everyone including your news site. I remember well my invite from a friend who had attended Harvard to facebook. “oh no, not another one of these,” I said. But I joined and let it sit for a few years building. There’s room for all approaches on the internet. Peace! Thanks for the comment.