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YouTube Adds a Politics Channel

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YouTube has launched a new Politics channel that lets users see how the 2012 candidates compare in popularity on YouTube. The page also works as a hub for finding political videos, parodies, debates, and the channels of political candidates.

The Features of the Politics Channel

What do you call a group of sharks all trying to destroy each other in the most bloody ways possible?

An election.

While some of us avoid politics like the plague and others throw themselves enthusiastically into the fray, the majority can at least enjoy quick access to political information, coverage, debates, parodies, and more. The new YouTube Politics channel aims to connect users with all of the above: The "site will feature the latest campaign ads, parodies, gotchas, and speeches, offering you a 360-view of the election," according to the YouTube blog.

view-stats-youtube-politics

You can find the Politics page at YouTube.com/Politics. In addition to seeing the most popular videos, users can view a chart of the 2012 candidates. You can view the popularity of those candidates on YouTube by either video views or subscriptions (Rick Perry is winning on views while Ron Paul takes the subscriptions in a landslide victory).

A "meet the candidates" section allows you to see the popular videos for each candidate, look at current YouTube statistic related to the candidate, and navigate directly to the candidate's channel. All of the 2012 potentials have a presence on YouTube.

Be aware that certain browser extensions and the beta Cosmic Panda look break the page. You can view the core political elements, regardless of your extensions or experiments, here.

How Non-Campaign Videos Appear

Since the popularity and default videos for this page come from the official campaign channels of candidates, the process for adding parodies, screw-ups, and other user-posted content isn't clear. PaidContent questioned YouTube about how this process would work.

A YouTube spokesperson stated, "The Hot Political Videos tab which you can see at the top of the page takes you to that week’s top videos that could be from right across the spectrum – citizen-created, gotcha moments, news footage, etc. That section is curated by Storyful. [...] While a citizen can’t add a video directly to youtube.com/politics, if someone uploads a video and it starts to take off, it would possibly be included in the Hot Political Videos list."

YouTube has been involved in politics previously, including through sponsoring the GOP debate alongside Fox and creating a virtual town hall.


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