YouTube lets people blur faces in videos

YouTube on Wednesday began letting people blur faces in videos they upload to the website, which has become a major platform for sharing clips of dramatic news events.

“Today we’re launching face blurring — a new tool that allows you to obscure faces within videos with the click of a button,” said Amanda Conway, policy associate at the Google-owned video-sharing service.

“As citizens continue to play a critical role in supplying news and human rights footage from around the world, YouTube is committed to creating even better tools to help them.”

Video editing options at YouTube were expanded to include a “Blur All Faces” button. People will get previews of videos with the blurred effects prior to deciding whether to publish them at YouTube.

“This is emerging technology, which means it sometimes has difficulty detecting faces depending on the angle, lighting, obstructions and video quality,” Conway said.

“It’s possible that certain faces or frames will not be blurred.”

A Pew Research Center report this week indicated that news is rapidly becoming important as YouTube grows far beyond its roots as a stage for amateur videos ranging from silly backyard stunts to children and pets.

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