Unless you are the most eagle-eyed of YouTube visitors (or users for that matter), you may not have spotted one of Google’s small updates to its video service — the removal of public tags from video pages.
In an update on its Product Forums and in a tweet on its YTCreators account (embedded below), Google explains that the tags were removed in a change that went out this week that is designed to stop some users from “abusing tags by copying them from other videos.” Noticing that most viewers didn’t interact with them all that much, Google decided that they could be yanked from video pages.
We made tags private.Please keep providing them with uploads.Viewers didn’t use them and some abused them
— YouTube Creators (@YTCreators) August 16, 2012
Before you worry that tags will no longer help to identify and index your videos, Google is quick to point out that “anyone who uploads should keep adding them to [their] videos. Tags are still used to aid the discoverability of your videos like they have before, the only difference now is that they don’t appear on the video page.”
By displaying tags on a page, Google aided video uploaders who sought to outrank or profit off the back of a popular video by copying them across to their own videos. With the tags now hidden, users will have to reply on organic placement of their videos, as they should.
[Image Credit: korosirego]