A week after Twitter added support for NFT avatars, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki said cryptocurrencies and NFTs present a "previously unimaginable opportunity to grow the connection between creators and their fans" on YouTube.
What is cooking?
Wojcicki hasn't announced any specific plans to add blockchain functionality to YouTube, but calling NFTs an "opportunity" makes it seem like the site is working on something. YouTube chief for games Ryan Wyatt announced today that he is leaving YouTube for a blockchain company, as is senior director of partnerships with creators Jamie Byrne (for a different blockchain company), so clearly others at YouTube are interested. cryptocurrencies and NFTs (Except in the extremely unlikely event that starters Wyatt and Byrne were the only ones besides Wojcicki sipping on the cryptocurrency hype).
“We are always focused on expanding the YouTube ecosystem to help creators capitalize on emerging technologies, including things like NFTs, as we continue to strengthen and enhance creator and fan experiences on YouTube,” Wojcicki wrote in a open letter on YouTube's plans for 2022. The site is likely to work out its blockchain intentions within the year, then.
NFTs invade the digital world
Otherwise, a big focus of the letter is Shorts, YouTube's answer to TikTok videos. Wojcicki announced that YouTube had 5 trillion views of Shorts, and said his teams are "working to make it even easier for creators and users to create game-related Shorts." Also in the gaming category, YouTube is "focusing on better live discoverability and more chat features" and plans to add the membership gift feature this year, Wojcicki said.
Along with Twitter and YouTube, the Discord voice and text chat network once toyed with the idea of NFT integration, but said last November that it has no current plans to implement the ideas. As for NFTs in the games themselves, we recently took a look at current and future projects, and there is a lot more chatter than anything else right now.
If a giant like YouTube gets into NFTs, though, I wonder if companies like Discord and big game developers aren't going to follow suit. It gets a little easier to get over the backlash when you can point to a huge company like Google and say, "Well, they're doing it."