A handle, which is a pretty common feature across social media platforms, has been surprisingly missing from Youtube. You either search individual channels by names or somehow get those dreaded, jumbled channel URLs that are hard to remember. That is now finally changing. YouTube is taking a page out of the social media books as it is making it easier for users and creators to identify themselves on the platform. With “Handles,” creators will be given the opportunity to have a unique way of identifying themselves and distinguishing themselves from their counterparts on the video sharing social media platform.
YouTube made the announcement in a blog post, informing that handles would be a “new way for people to easily find and engage with creators and each other on YouTube.” Handles will be unique (unlike channel names) and recognizable for every channel, and the @username will soon be used across YouTube Shorts, channel pages, and more. In fact, YouTube maintains that it will be simpler and faster to mention others in comments, community posts, or video descriptions, as users can give a shout-out to creators in comments.
A handle on YouTube will not replace a channel name – instead, it will be another way to help them reach more audiences and increase their visibility. All channels on YouTube are eligible to have a handle. “We want to ensure creators can craft an identity as unique as their content while giving viewers the confidence that they are interacting with their favorite creators,” the blog post by YouTube read.
You will have to wait for a bit to get hold of this feature, as YouTube informed that it will gradually be opening access to all YouTube channels to choose their handles over the coming weeks. Creators will be notified when they can choose a handle for their channel over the next month, so some creators will be able to choose their handles ahead of others. This will be contingent on several factors, such as overall presence on the platform, the number of subscribers, and whether the channel is active.
Creaturs should go to youtube.com/handle to choose their handles, once they have received the notification. If they do not choose one by November 14, they will be assigned handles automatically based on their channel names.
If your channel already has a personalized URL, that will automatically become their default handle, and they will be given the option to change it once they receive the notification. Once they choose their handle, YouTube will create a matching URL to help creators easily direct people to their content.