David Dobrik To Host ‘SpongeBob SquarePants’ Fan Special On Nickelodeon

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David Dobrik is expanding his relationship with Nickelodeon.

The YouTube superstar — and two-time Kids Choice Awards winner, who also serves as a judge on Nick’s America’s Most Musical Family competition series — has been tapped to host a television special for the animated smash SpongeBob SquarePants, airing next month.

The virtual event, titled The Stars of SpongeBob Fan Favorites Special, will air on June 5 at 7 pm ET. During the virtually-produced special, SpongeBob voice actors — including Tom Kenny (SpongeBob), Bill Fagerbakke (Patrick), Rodger Bumpass (Squidward), Carolyn Lawrence (Sandy), Clancy Brown (Mr. Krabs), and Doug Lawrence (Plankton) — will come together to recreate classic scenes from the show, as chosen by fans.

Dobrik, who counts 17.4 million subscribers and typically nabs around 200 million monthly views, will guide the voice cast to recreate memorable moments, lead a lightning-round Q&A, and join in for an all-new rendition of the “F.U.N. Song” — a popular tune from the series about friendship.

“I signed onto this project for the obvious reason that SpongeBob is one of the best shows of all time,” Dobrik, who is on hiatus from his massive vlog amid the coronavirus pandemic, said in a statement. “I feel that I owe a lot to SpongeBob and all Bikini Bottom for helping me figure out what I thought was funny and entertaining. The show shaped so much of my childhood, so being a part of this special with the entire cast feels like a full circle moment.”

SpongeBob, which launched in July 1999, has spawned multiple theatrical releases, a consumer products empire (including a collab with Hila Klein’s Teddy Fresh streetwear brand), a Broadway musical, and more. The cartoon is distributed in more than 170 countries, and averages over 100 million total viewers every quarter, according to Nick. The Stars Of SpongeBob adds to Nickelodeon’s previously-announced slate of programming produced virtually in quarantine.

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Fullscreen Looks Beyond YouTube For Latest Fully-Managed Talent Signings

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Fullscreen, the multi-channel network that’s currently home to 2,500 creators who generate upwards of 7 billion monthly views, has added six new names to its more rarefied 360° talent management division. Beyond YouTube channel oversight, Fullscreen’s talent management division provides all-around guidance to roughly 60 influencers and celebrities across every aspect of their careers.

The latest talent signings include Fullscreen’s first TikTok stars: comedic creator Mitchell Crawford (3 million followers) and prankster Q ‘SwagboyQ’ Stenline (3.7 million followers, pictured above). While other Fullscreen creators boast a TikTok presence, these are the company’s first signings to have natively risen to fame on the app.

Other additions to the roster include Coffee and Kareem actress Samantha Cole; Harvard grad, Masterchef finalist, and Voodles founder Nick DiGiovanni; and two YouTube creators: K-pop lover and K-beauty focused Darcei Giles (728,000 subscribers) and beauty vlogger Yoatzi Castro (584,000 subscribers).

@mitchellPrivate School Kids🏫♬ Private School Kids – mitchell

Mahzad Babayan, Fullscreen’s VP of talent management and partnerships, tells Tubefilter that the division’s approach to working with TikTokkers doesn’t differ from creators who hail from other, more established platforms.

“We approach TikTok talent representation the same way that we would any other creator,” Babayan says. “Although with TikTok, the creators we’re working with are relatively new to the game, so we’re really approaching management with white-glove service, and leveraging our experience to help guide them. There’s a lot of education that goes into helping creators dig into what their businesses and futures look like.”

To this end, Fullscreen will work with Crawford to bring his curated content and improv skills to other platforms, and shepherd his acting aspirations. The company will help Stenline — an actor and model — build out his presence on YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram. Fullscreen adds it saw enormous potential in Giles’ “electrifying demeanor and demographic-capturing video titles” — particularly her popular Black Girl Tries series (embedded below) — and notes that Castro, who is the sister of popular beauty guru Louie Castro (who is also signed to Fullscreen), stood out for sharing her Mexican-American culture and journey through motherhood.

@swagboyqDude is really working out in jeans @theswagboyq♬ original sound – swagboyq

Wins To Date

Fullscreen launched its talent management business in 2015, which today is staffed by five managers, including Babayan, Scarlett Perlman, Nick Coffey, Mason Frank, and Eric Gowat. When we profiled Fullscreen’s talent management services in 2018, the division comprised seven managers — though, at the time, Babayan said several were filling dual roles within the company. The current fleet is dedicated solely to talent management. The company also counted a portfolio of 50 clients at the time, meaning it hasn’t substantially increased its roster since then.

Babayan’s team works on myriad opportunities for talent, including film and TV projects, book publishing, podcasting, and music — in addition to harnessing Fullscreen’s native expertise in social media development and branded content. The company’s existing portfolio includes basketball player Brandon Armstrong, digital duo Cody Ko and Noel Miller, writer Aija Mayrock, and vloggers Miles McKenna, Elle MillsAlyx Weiss, and Jack Douglass.

Babayan says that many clients who have been managed by Fullscreen from the beginning are still with the company, though she continues to seek to diversify its roster. That includes culling talent from both the digital and traditional entertainment worlds, as well as authors, athletes, and gamers. And while a social presence is crucial to any career in entertainment, it’s not a dealbreaker, Babayan says, noting Fullscreen’s pacts with Mayrock and DiGiovanni. (While both count a sizable following on Instagram, their career ventures are largely focused elsewhere).

“Overall, you do want to work with someone who has an understanding of social, and who cares about making it part of amplifying their business,” she explains. “It’s a very important part, but it’s not the end-all-be-all. We’re really going after clients that we feel can have longevity.”

Looking back, Babayan says she’s particularly proud of several of the team’s wins to date. Mckenna, for instance, is in the midst of building an off-YouTube career as an actor, having most recently booked a role in the upcoming Blumhouse and Amazon Studios feature Nocturne. The 24-year-old transgender star is also set to publish his first book — Out!: How To Be Your Authentic Self — though its release date has been pushed to Oct. 6 due to the coronavirus pandemic. Mayrock, too, recently launched a book of poetry titled Dear Girl, published by Andrews McNeel.

Babayan also touted the record deal she helped forge between Ko and Miller’s Tiny Meat Gang with Arista Records, as well as CJ Perry’s supporting role in the upcoming Bruce Willis film Cosmic Sin, the renewal of Armstrong’s Fouled Out series for retailer Champs Sports, and fashion vlogger and body positivity advocate Sierra Schultzzie being named a brand ambassador for Hollister.

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TikTok And Digital Talent Firm ‘TalentX’ Onboards Former Gersh Agent Sean Stewart

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TalentX Entertainment, a digital talent company that works with some of the hottest stars on TikTok, has hired former Gersh agent Sean Stewart to serve as its new digital talent director.

In his new role, Stewart will spearhead all of TalentX’s touring initiatives, oversee touring clients, and help build out the company’s forthcoming convention, TalentXCon.

Established in 2019 by a trio of creators — YouTube star Tal Fishman, gamer Jason Wilhelm, and TikTok icon Josh Richards — TalentX is the mind behind the Sway LA content house and social media brand. Sway LA comprises six TikTok influencers living and working together in a Bel Air mansion, including Richards (17.5 million TikTok followers), Griffin Johnson (5.6 million followers), Anthony Reeves (8.6 million followers), Bryce Hall (3.6 million followers), Kio Cyr (5.7 million followers), and Jaden Hossler (5.8 million followers).

During his time at The Gersh Agency, Stewart worked with digital creators like Kurtis Conner and Cherdleys, as well as actress Jade Catta Preta, and Bachelor alum Corrinne Olympios. He’s also not the first Gersh agent that TalentX has onboarded; the company hired Michael Senzer as its VP of business development in February.

“Sean is an extraordinary talent with a unique look on the digital landscape,” TalentX’s VP of talent, Michael Gruen, said in a statement. “We are looking forward to him helping develop our existing talent and for him to go out and find the next age of digital superstars.”

TalentX, which was also co-founded by Fullscreen vet Warren Lentz and Gruen, a former NBA agent — most recently announced a pact with esports giant ReKTGlobal to form a talent management company for gamers dubbed TalentX Gaming. The company also partnered with ICM Partners in March. Per the deal, the agency will represent TalentX’s clients in all areas.

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Doing Things Media Developing TV Show Based On Its Viral Series ‘All Gas No Brakes’

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Instagram meme account network Doing Things Media has announced its latest TV deal with comedy duo Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim’s production company, Abso Lutely.

The two companies are developing a series based on All Gas No Brakes, which counts nearly 2 million cross-platform followers on Instagram, YouTube, and Patreon. The TV series will showcase the bizarre fringes of American culture, hosted and executive produced by Andrew Callaghan. Callaghan, who wears a signature oversized newsman suit and bears a deadpan attitude, will travel across the nation in an RV to attend conferences, parties, and other events — accompanied by flat-earthers, furries, border patrolmen, ravers, porn stars, and beyond.

The deal marks Doing Things’ latest bid to extend its digital IP onto other mediums, following the second season of its TV series Howie Mandel’s Animals Doing Things on National Geographic, as well as a licensing pact with MTV’s Ridiculousness to furnish viral content. The company’s Doggos Doing Things account also released a book earlier this month.

Callaghan was brought into the Doing Things family as a full-time creator in 2019 after being discovered by the company’s co-founders, Reid Hailey and Derek Lucas. Doing Things is also home to popular Instagram meme accounts that have garnered more than 50 million followers, including Shitheadsteve, No Chaser, Middle Class Fancy, and Animals Doing Things.

“At Doing Things, we are constantly looking to expand our content offering,” Hailey said in a statement. “As we looked to take the series to television, we couldn’t think of better partners than the comedic geniuses Tim, Eric and the Abso Lutely team. We can’t wait to bring the absurdity and excitement of what’s made All Gas No Brakes so successful on the internet to television.”

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Fanbytes Launches ByteHouse, TikTok’s First U.K.-Based Creator Collective

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Big Brother meets Hype House in ByteHouse, a creator collective and “online show” featuring a core group of TikTokers and (post-pandemic) a rotating cast of guests all living, shooting, and posting together from the comfy confines of a Mayfair mansion.

It’s the latest project from London-based influencer marketing company Fanbytes, which–through management division Bytesized Talent–represents 40 prominent U.K.-based TikTok creators with a collective following of more than 55 million.

In March, six of those creators became the ByteSquad: @itzshauni (who has 5.5 million followers on the platform), @surfaceldn (5.2 million), @sebbbyjon (2.1 million), @ktfranklin (2 million), @itslilyrose (1.1 million), and @montykeates (488K). As part of the squad, their job is to create a constant stream of digital content for the official ByteHouse TikTok account, as well as their own individual pages.

@bytesquadhqWelcome to the ByteHouse!🔥♬ original sound – scott13corbett

Timothy Armoo, Fanbytes’ cofounder and CEO, tells Tubefilter that ByteHouse had been in development for months before the pandemic hit, with a planned debut date of early April. The company had just gotten the ByteSquad settled in when lockdowns took hold of London, derailing its plan to mix things up by having a new guest creator join the core six every two weeks.

Fanbytes restrategized. In addition to temporarily nixing guest creators (something it’ll add back to ByteHouse in the future), it decided to focus much of ByteHouse’s debut videos on what Armoo calls “escapism content,” like pranks and other lighthearted fare.

“Due to lockdown, people are going online to search for new shows and content they can use to get out of the constant negative news,” he explains.

Lifestyle creator Monty adds that the ByteSquad sees this time as an opportunity to “help people through coronavirus by helping them stay inside, with daily livestreams and constant content.” He says, “What we’re looking forward to the most is just how crazy the content is going to be…It really is exciting to see what happens when you have all of us come together with our different styles to create the most interesting content on TikTok.”

@bytesquadhqWho wants daily pranks with @surfaceldn 😂🔥♬ original sound – bytesquadhq

ByteHouse dropped its first uploads–an intro to all creators involved (above)–on its dedicated TikTok account April 3. In the week after the premiere, the account’s videos (which are uploaded at least daily and count over 100 so far) received more than 15 million views and 2.5 million likes, Armoo says.

As expected, viewers haven’t only watched content from the newly minted ByteSquad on the main ByteHouse account. According to Armoo, ByteSquad members have seen an average viewership spike of 35% since ByteHouse’s premiere. They now collectively bring in nearly 74 million views per week on their personal accounts.

At press time, ByteHouse’s TikTok account is up to 417.7K followers, 10.4 million likes, and a whopping 115 million views. Its YouTube channel has 30.4K subscribers, and its Instagram account has 56.2K followers.

This traction has brought brands “flocking to be part of the first-ever TikTok show,” Armoo says. ByteHouse is working with organizations like party game company What Do You Meme? and Rise Above, a program that works with teens to promote discussions about mental health and prevent risk-taking behavior like smoking and unsafe sex.

@bytesquadhqwhat are you doing right now? rise above and ##stayhomefeelgood ##ad♬ original sound – gogogabriella

Jan Nixon, marketing manager at Rise Above, says it chose to partner with ByteHouse because, “Now more than ever it is vitally important to urge young people to stay at home and save lives. ByteSquad is an innovative and creative way we can really engage young people with this message.”

Armoo (who’s 24) likewise sees ByteHouse as a way to reach Gen Z viewers, now and in the future.

“In a world where younger audiences are moving away from linear TV and moving online, more specifically to social, it’s ever more important for programming to be created by Gen Z for Gen Z,” he says. “The ByteSquad is some of the most entertaining and talented people there are, and I’m extremely excited to see what we can cook up.”

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Digital News Network ‘The Young Turks’ Launches Twitch Channel

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Progressive news network The Young Turks (TYT) is launching a Twitch channel.

The company, founded by host Cenk Uygur, already boasts a massive presence on YouTube (4.7 million subscribers) and Facebook (3.2 million followers). That said, it’s foraying onto Twitch as livestreaming is at an all-time high amid quarantine. (That said, TYT tells Tubefilter that the partnership has been in the works for a while). Accordingly, TYT’s eponymous news broadcast with Uygur and Ana Kasparian will now be accessible to Twitch viewers, as will John Iadarola’s The Damage ReportStaying Home With Josh Fox, The Conversation, Old School, and Happy Half Hour.

Shows will stream on Twitch simultaneously as they are being broadcast on other platforms. The partnership will also call for 12 hours of Twitch-exclusive content each month. This slate will be announced in coming weeks, but one of the inaugural shows is titled Between Me And Uygur, and will see Uygur and a guest discussing life in quarantine.

“TYT is a giant within independent media, and we pride ourselves as a digital campfire because of our lean-in audience,” Uygur said in a statement. “The launch on Twitch is an exciting opportunity to reach an interactive community of 17.5 million average daily visitors.”

You can visit TYT’s new Twitch channel, which has already amassed 1,800 followers, right here.

In addition to launching on Twitch, TYT launched TYT Academy in February — a nonpartisan online course that seeks to teach burgeoning journalists how to report on their local communities, including the basics of news-gathering, reporting, production, and multi-platform publishing. The project is being funded in part by the Google News Initiative.

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After Years Of Fan Efforts, Zack Snyder’s ‘Justice League’ Cut Is Coming To HBO Max

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Yes, it’s really happening: WarnerMedia’s forthcoming streaming service HBO Max will #ReleaseTheSnyderCut of Justice League in 2021.

For those who’ve missed the oft-used social media hashtag and the movement it represents, here’s a rundown: Director Zack Snyder (known for blockbusters like 300, Watchmen, and Sucker Punch) piloted DC Comics’ current cinematic universe reboot with Henry Cavill-starring origin story Man of Steel and its sequel, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. He was set to continue his run by directing 2017’s Justice League–a much-anticipated film that was essentially DC’s Avengers equivalent, uniting the biggest of big-name superheroes from its long-running comic book franchises.

Snyder helmed Justice League‘s production through seven months of principal photography. But then, during post-production editing, his daughter passed away. He stepped down to be with his family, and DC brought in Avengers writer/director Joss Whedon as his replacement. Shortly after, Justice League underwent two months of reshoots under Whedon’s direction.

When Justice League bowed, it did so to significant criticism from fans and critics alike, a number of whom said they thought Whedon’s influence had interrupted Snyder’s original, darker vision for the film. #ReleaseTheSnyderCut became a rallying cry among fans who wanted to see Justice League as it would have been, edited by Snyder and without added material from Whedon’s reshoots.

Speculation around the cut’s existence and potential release reignited last November, when Gal Gadot, who plays Wonder Woman in Justice League and solo films, tweeted #ReleaseTheSnyderCut with a shot from the Justice League set. Ben Affleck, who plays Batman, also tweeted it, and so did Jason Momoa (Aquaman) and Snyder himself.

Now, Snyder has confirmed his official edit will come to HBO Max next year. He revealed the news to fans this morning, during a Q&A before a virtual screening of O Man of Steel, Variety reports.

“I want to thank HBO Max and Warner Brothers for this brave gesture of supporting artists and allowing their true visions to be realized,” Snyder added in a statement. “Also a special thank you to all of those involved in the SnyderCut movement for making this a reality.”

“Since I got here 14 months ago, the chant to #ReleaseTheSnyderCut has been a daily drumbeat in our offices and inboxes,” Robert Greenblatt, chairman of WarnerMedia’s direct-to-consumer efforts, added. “Well, the fans have asked, and we are thrilled to finally deliver. At the end of the day, it really is all about them and we are beyond excited to be able to release Zack’s ultimate vision for this film in 2021.”

A specific release date for the cut hasn’t yet been announced; WarnerMedia simply says it will go live “in 2021.”

HBO Max bows one week from today. WarnerMedia is stocking the $14.99-per-month service with beloved TV shows and films from all its subsidiaries, including Warner Bros., HBO, CNN, TNT, TBS, Cartoon Network and Adult Swim, Crunchyroll, and Rooster Teeth. At launch, it will offer every DC film ever made.

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Top 50 Most Viewed US YouTube Channels • Week Of 5/18/2020

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[Editor’s Note: Tubefilter Charts is a weekly rankings column from Tubefilter with data provided by GospelStats. It’s exactly what it sounds like; a top number ranking of YouTube channels based on statistics collected within a given time frame. Check out all of our Tubefilter Charts with new installments every week right here.]

Scroll down for this week’s Tubefilter Chart.


In a week in which a children’s entertainment channel set records on YouTube, the US edition of our Top 50 chart didn’t see much significant movement. The top five channels in the chart were unchanged from last week, and only five channels that were outside of the Top 50 seven days cracked the latest installment of our American ranking.

Chart Toppers

In this week’s global Tubefilter chart, I did my best to put the achievements of Cocomelon – Nursery Rhymes into perspective, but our US-only chart further highlights the enormity of one billion views per week. If half of the 1.06 billion views Cocomelon received over seven days immediately disappeared, the Southern Californian animation studio would still be the third most-popular American channel on YouTube. As things stand now, fellow children’s channel Kids Diana Show comes in a distant second, albeit with an impressive weekly view count of 659.9 million.

The only channel in the top five that saw its viewership decline from last week was Like Nastya, which remained the third most-viewed American channel despite a 6% viewership drop. Its 548.3 million views eclipsed the 459.6 million views achieved by another family-friendly hub, Vlad and Nikita, over the same period. The only channel in the top five not directed at young children was the number-five finisher. The official YouTube home of the WWE received 389.6 million views over seven days, a 16% week-over-week increase.

Top Gainers

Since 2006, the MTV comedy show Wild N’ Out has given rappers, actors, comedians, YouTubers, and other celebrities the chance to diss host Nick Cannon about his subpar acting career and his failed marriage to the legendary Mariah Carey. What strategies have allowed this silliness to endure for 15 seasons and more than 200 episodes? Well, the show’s success on YouTube certainly hasn’t hurt. Over the past few years, MTV has embraced Wild N’ Out‘s success on YouTube by bringing internet-famous stars (such as Timothy DeLaGhetto and King Bach) into its cast.

The Viacom-owned channel has also given Wild N’ Out its own YouTube channel, and clips released on that hub have proved quite popular. In the past week, viewership on those videos has surged by 33%. Powered by that boost, the official Wild N’ Out channel received 53.6 million views over seven days, which was the 47th-best total among channels based in the United States. Even the primary MTV YouTube channel can’t count viewership that high.

Some of the most popular Wild N’ Out videos are compilations that remind viewers of the best jokes, insults, beefs, and musical numbers in the show’s history. One such compilation, which runs for nearly an hour, received more than 3.1 million views in the first eight days after its release.

As always, keep up to speed with the latest Tubefilter Charts and all of our news at Tubefilter by following us on Twitter, becoming a fan on Facebook, and watching our videos on YouTube.


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YouTube’s New Screen Time Management Feature Wants You To Go To Bed

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YouTube’s suite of screen time management features now includes a reminder to hit the hay.

Starting today, iOS and Android users can set up a notice that’ll nudge them at a designated time, reminding them to get off their phones and get to bed. The function–called ‘Bedtime Reminders’–joins a handful of other time management features YouTube introduced back in 2018, including a profile showing users their total weekly watch time, bundled push notifications, the ability to disable sounds/vibrations at night, and “take a break” reminders that chime in when someone has spent 15, 30, 60, 90, or 180 minutes watching content. YouTube also lets parents set shutoff timers for usage of its separate Kids app.

Users who set a Bedtime Reminder have the option to ask YouTube to let them finish the video they’re watching before pinging them. (So, if they set a reminder for 10 p.m. but are watching a video till 10:13, the ping will appear at 10:13.) Once reminders appear, users can choose to snooze them for ten minutes or dismiss them entirely–until the next night, at least.

“With so many of us at home, it can be especially hard to stick to your routine, and it’s more important than ever to set boundaries to help manage how much time you’re spending online,” Team YouTube wrote in a Community post about the update. “We want to help everyone better understand their tech usage, disconnect when needed, and create healthy habits.”

Team YouTube added that in the two-ish years since the platform introduced time management tools, its systems have sent more than 3 billion “take a break” reminders.

For now, only iOS/Android smartphone users have access to Bedtime Reminders, but the feature will become available to users on all other devices “in the next few days,” YouTube said.

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YouTube’s New Screen Time Management Feature Wants You To Go To Bed

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YouTube’s suite of screen time management features now includes a reminder to hit the hay.

Starting today, iOS and Android users can set up a notice that’ll nudge them at a designated time, reminding them to get off their phones and get to bed. The function–called ‘Bedtime Reminders’–joins a handful of other time management features YouTube introduced back in 2018, including a profile showing users their total weekly watch time, bundled push notifications, the ability to disable sounds/vibrations at night, and “take a break” reminders that chime in when someone has spent 15, 30, 60, 90, or 180 minutes watching content. YouTube also lets parents set shutoff timers for usage of its separate Kids app.

Users who set a Bedtime Reminder have the option to ask YouTube to let them finish the video they’re watching before pinging them. (So, if they set a reminder for 10 p.m. but are watching a video till 10:13, the ping will appear at 10:13.) Once reminders appear, users can choose to snooze them for ten minutes or dismiss them entirely–until the next night, at least.

“With so many of us at home, it can be especially hard to stick to your routine, and it’s more important than ever to set boundaries to help manage how much time you’re spending online,” Team YouTube wrote in a Community post about the update. “We want to help everyone better understand their tech usage, disconnect when needed, and create healthy habits.”

Team YouTube added that in the two-ish years since the platform introduced time management tools, its systems have sent more than 3 billion “take a break” reminders.

For now, only iOS/Android smartphone users have access to Bedtime Reminders, but the feature will become available to users on all other devices “in the next few days,” YouTube said.

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