Thursday, 25 March 2010

Beyond the Boundary: Old is gold

Editor’s note: Each week, our resident cricketer (and former national Singapore player) Sajith Sivanandan will be recounting his experiences watching IPL on YouTube.

Saurabh Tiwary of the Mumbai Indians was only four months old when a certain Anil Kumble played his first one-day international for India. Fast forward 20 years, and Saurabh played Kumble in Match 14 of IPL 2010. The stage was set for young Saurabh to announce himself on the big stage; to show that he was not overawed by this colossus of Indian cricket. On came Kumble for his second over. Young Saurabh was determined to prevail. He jumped out with the confidence that comes with youth, his backlift all of 20 years old. Kumble though had one trick more. He threw in the googly, held back the ball, beat Saurabh in flight and before that ambitious backlift could adjust, had broken down the stumps. The sage Kumble jumped up and down as if he were in his teens again. Young Saurabh could only walk back and wonder. Experience, age and legend prevailed in this battle between young and old.

This past week in IPL matches was about the old stagers - the names that most players in the IPL grew up hearing about, watching on television, probably even chasing for an autograph at one point. Adam Gilchrist is the top scorer for the Deccan Chargers, demolishing attacks as if this were the IPL being played in the year 2000 and not 2010. Chaminda Vaas, all 36 years of him, is the top wicket taker in the tournament.

Tendulkar continues to be a draw not just in the stadium or on TV but on YouTube as well. Matches between the Mumbai Indians and the Delhi Daredevils, and the Mumbai Indians and Kolkata Knight Riders, were among the most viewed on YouTube for the week.

IPL on YouTube this week was about legendary players already made. Will the coming week be about legends in the making?

Posted by Sajith Sivanandan (When not attempting to get selected for IPL in the year 2020, Sajith works at Google Singapore)

Thursday, 18 March 2010

Beyond the Boundary: a cricket insider’s look at IPL on YouTube

It's here! Like many of you, I’ve been counting the days to the start of IPL matches. Five days into the tournament, the cricket in IPL 2010 has already begun to live up to all that it promised. In it’s third season, IPL is an event that brings together sport and entertainment, with international cricket stars on the field and Bollywood actresses in the stand. This year for the first time, fans around the world can tune in to IPL’s YouTube Channel to catch all 60 matches and 43 days of play. Now, no matter where you live in the world, you can get front row seats to the hottest cricket action.

Over the next weeks of the tournament, I’ll be joining you in YouTube’s virtual grandstand - cheering for my favorite players, watching the flippers and outswingers, and analyzing each wicket. I’ll be blogging about my experience of watching cricket on YouTube as well as sharing my favorite matches, highlights clips, and more. You can also expect a few insights into what’s been popular around the world.

How’d I become such a cricket fan? Well, like many of you, I’ve had some experience on the field. I’ve played school, college and league cricket in Delhi, played for the Singapore national team for over five years, and today am a member of the committee that selects the national cricket team for Singapore. 

For your entertainment, I’ve included a picture below of me in my cricket whites.

As I blog about my IPL highlights, I want to hear yours! Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

Posted by Sajith Sivanandan (When not attempting to get selected for IPL in the year 2020, Sajith works at Google Singapore)

Oops, pow, surprise...24 hours of video all up in your eyes!

In May of last year, we announced 20 hours of video were uploaded to YouTube every minute. We then challenged you to keep the uploads coming to see whether or not we could get a day’s worth of video – 24 hours – uploaded in the same brief time span.

Today, we’re announcing that you’ve done it! In just 60 quick ticks of the second hand, more than a full, action-packed day in Jack Bauer’s life is now uploaded to YouTube. To put this into context, imagine how much stuff happens in 24 hours:
  • The earth rotates 360 degrees as it orbits the sun
  • The second hand on your bedside clock ticks 86,400 times
  • The most skilled climber reaches Mount Everest’s summit
  • 2.5 days go by on Jupiter
A day’s worth of content uploaded to YouTube every minute is a big achievement for our community and speaks to the role video plays in connecting and changing the world one upload at a time. So what’s next? 30 hours? 36 hours? Tell us in the comments below what you think the next big YouTube upload milestone should be.

Hunter Walk, Director, Product Management, recently favorited “The LXD: In the Internet age, dance evolves...”  

Graph showing growth hours per minute uploaded to the site
Cross-posted from the Official YouTube Blog

Friday, 12 March 2010

Indian Premier League bowls wicked googly to the world on YouTube

When the first ball of this year’s Indian Premier League cricket season is bowled, fans across the planet will have a front row seat in the world’s biggest online sports stadium. Tonight the Deccan Chargers and Kolkata Knight Riders will face off in Mumbai at 8pm IST (10:30pm West AU, 1:30am East AU), and the YouTube global community will be able to tune in to the IPL’s YouTube Channel ( for streaming and on-demand access to witness the start of what promises to be one of the most widely-distributed sporting events in history. Fans can watch matches, highlight videos, player interviews, and much more all on the IPL’s YouTube Channel.

Named by Forbes as the "hottest sports league in the world" with revenues comparable to the world’s most popular leagues, the IPL season is a 60-match, 43-day tournament that features some of the best talent in cricket today. You can come to YouTube and keep up with the action any time, anywhere, and connect with fans across the globe. Watch as the match happens, or if you missed a match, tune in later to see what happened. The entire season will be streamed around the world on YouTube, except in the US, where matches will be time-delayed and made available 15 minutes after the match ends.

On the IPL Channel, you’ll see three tabs:

  • Today’s Matches: This is where you can watch streamed matches as they happen. (Note that the stream will be delayed by a few minutes.) Click through at any time to see the match scorecard.
  • Recent Matches: Catch up any time on the full action of matches that have already happened. Watch Sachin cream the ball through the covers, Warney taking his latest wicket and more.
  • Highlights: If you’re short on time, check in here for short videos of player interviews, match highlights, greatest plays, and more.
And for all of you who want to cheer or commiserate with others, check out our Twitter gadget on the channel page to be part of the conversation. You can keep up with the discussion on Twitter with the YouTube IPL hashtag (#youtube_ipl). Share, rate, and comment on videos throughout the channel, or upload your own video responses to the action. There's also a link so you can join the Official DLF IPL community on Orkut (

We'll be watching the donkey drops, the five-fers, the flippers and floaters, the half-yorkers and slow sweeps — and cheering alongside you!

Amit Agarwal, Strategic Partner Development Manager

Friday, 5 March 2010

The Future Will Be Captioned: Improving Accessibility on YouTube

One in six Australians is affected by hearing loss and recent studies have predicted that over 700 million people worldwide will suffer from hearing impairment by 2015. To address a clear need, the broadcast industry began running captions on regular video programming in the early 1970s. Today, closed captions on video are more prevalent than ever. But generating captions today can be a time-consuming and complicated process.

Making video easily accessible is something we're working hard to address at YouTube. One of the first steps we took was the development of a caption feature in 2008. In November of last year we released auto-captioning for a small, select group of partners. Auto-captioning combines some of the speech-to-text algorithms found in Google's Voice Search to automatically generate video captions when requested by a viewer. The video owner can also download the auto-generated captions, improve them, and upload the new version. Viewers can even choose an option to translate those captions into any one of 50 different languages -- all in just a couple of clicks.

Today, we are opening up auto-captions to all YouTube users. There will even be a "request processing" button for un-captioned videos that any video owner can click on if they want to speed up the availability of auto-captions. It will take some time to process all the available video, so here are some things to keep in mind:

While we plan to broaden the feature to include more languages in the months to come, currently, auto-captioning is only for videos where English is spoken.
Just like any speech recognition application, auto-captions require a clearly spoken audio track. Videos with background noise or a muffled voice can't be auto-captioned. President Obama's speech on the recent Chilean Earthquake is a good example of the kind of audio that works for auto-captions.
Auto-captions aren't perfect and just like any other transcription, the owner of the video needs to check to make sure they're accurate. In other cases, the audio file may not be good enough to generate auto-captions. But please be patient -- our speech recognition technology gets better every day.
Auto-captions should be available to everyone who's interested in using them. We're also working to provide auto-captions for all past user uploads that fit the above mentioned requirements. If you're having trouble enabling them for your video, please visit our Help Centre here.

For content owners, the power of auto-captioning is significant. With just a few quick clicks your videos can be accessed by a whole new global audience. And captions can make it easier for users to discover content on YouTube.

Twenty hours of video is uploaded to YouTube every minute. Making some of these videos more accessible to people who have hearing disabilities or who speak different languages, not only represents a significant advancement in the democratization of information, it can also help foster greater collaboration and understanding.

Hiroto Tokusei, Product Manager, recently watched "How to Eat Stick Candy Fast"