You Can Find the “No Beard” Filter on TikTok With an Icon on Snapchat

You might have seen some users making videos on TikTok with full beards and, suddenly, without missing a beat, their beards disappear and they are suddenly as clean-shaven. No, they didn’t do a perfect cut screen and show themselves before and after a real-life shave.

Instead, they used the Snapchat “no beard” filter to see what they look like without a beard. And for those who are used to at least some scruff on a regular basis, the result is often pretty jarring.

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Why the New Recipe Website ‘Recipeasly’ Earned Instant Backlash

An impressive number of tech industry fiascos can be summarized in the same way. Someone tried to solve a problem (usually by launching an app), but wound up making things worse. For example, Uber harming the taxi industry while endangering drivers and customers alike. The new recipe app Recipeasly is small potatoes by comparison, but it’s managed to anger its target audience astoundingly fast.

If you spend much time on recipe blogs, you'll know that many writers preface their recipes with a lengthy blurb. There are numerous viral posts about the frustrating experience of scrolling past miles of text to get to the actual recipe. But on the whole, it's a minor inconvenience. Readers still get free access to expert food advice, and those long blurbs do serve a purpose. From a practical standpoint, they cater to Google's search algorithms, which prioritize original content. And from a creative standpoint, this is literally a food writer's job: they're writing about food. It also adds a personal touch to a genre where copyright doesn't really apply. Either way, complaining about that "wall of text" can feel very meanspirited toward the writers putting in all that hard work.

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This brings us to Recipeasly. This website attempts to "fix online recipes" by removing the "ads or life stories," leaving just the recipe behind. The site was seemingly conceived in 2013, but went dormant for several years before relaunching on Feb. 27. This relaunch lasted for one day.

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Considering the widespread annoyance at long recipe blogs, Recipeasly does fulfill a desire from the public. But that doesn't actually mean it's "solving" a "problem." As food writers quickly pointed out, Recipeasly just aggregates other people's work without their permission, stripping it for parts. It shows no respect for the original creators' labor.

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Within a few hours of announcing Recipeasly on Twitter, the site's creator Tom Redman responded to the backlash and deactivated the site to "re-examine its impact." If you visit the Recipeasly domain now, you'll find an apology saying, "We realize we're not demonstrating the huge respect we have for recipe creators. We missed the mark big time today and we're sorry." Redman elaborated on this apology on Twitter:

Needless to say, this apology wasn't welcomed with open arms by Recipeasly's detractors. By focusing on "how we're marketing Recipeasly" and pointing out that the site was no different from printing out a recipe at home, Redman's Twitter thread highlighted his apparent lack of understanding for the problem at hand.

Recipeasly is (or was) a little-known platform, and according to Redman it didn't actually make money. But it shares the same philosophy as big tech companies like Amazon and Uber, regarded by many as the nadir of modern capitalism. These companies prioritize "efficiency" with little care for the human side of how products and services are developed. In the case of recipe blogging, food writers need income, credit, and recognition, just like any other creator. If we're able to understand the problem with academic plagiarism or copyright theft, we should be able to understand this too. Just something to keep in mind if you're ever annoyed by ten seconds of scrolling through someone's blog.

*First Published: Mar 1, 2021, 3:20 pm

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What Is YouTube Shorts, and How Do You Make a Short? Details!

Video platforms have slowly transitioned to be more friendly to vertical-oriented videos, as apps like TikTok become increasingly popular. Instagram launched its own direct competitor to the Chinese-owned app, rolling out Instagram Reels in August 2020. 

Now, YouTube is joining the competition with YouTube Shorts, the platform’s own short-form video option. The popular video platform introduced a beta version of this feature for India-based creators, as TikTok was banned from the country in 2020.

But what is YouTube Shorts? These short-form videos are very similar to TikTok, both in their format and content, only their home is on YouTube.

Viewers can find YouTube Shorts on the homepage of the YouTube app. The feature is still in its beta version, though it’s officially reached creators and viewers in the U.S.

Here’s what you need to know about YouTube Shorts.

How to make Shorts on YouTube:

When YouTube initially introduced Shorts to the app in India, creators who had more than 10,000 subscribers could create these videos in-app, though not every creator in the U.S. has the option to at the moment.

Those who can create Shorts in-app can do so by clicking the “Create +” button and selecting “Create a Short.” While Shorts can be up to 60 seconds, if you’re looking to film one in-app, the max length is 15 seconds.

From there, the functionality is very similar to TikTok or Instagram for those who are familiar with those platforms. Just hold the capture button to begin filming, or tap it once to start and again to stop.

You can remove video clips by selecting the “Undo” button, or select “Redo” to add the removed clip back into the video.

From there, you can edit and upload as you usually would in-app. If you don’t have the option to create Shorts in-app, you can upload pre-recorded Short instead.

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To do this, ensure your video is either vertically oriented or has a 1:1 ratio; anything that doesn’t fit these parameters will not classify as a short.

From there, upload the video as you typically would and include the word “Short” somewhere in your title or description. You don’t have to do this, but it helps differentiate your content to your viewers. Videos that meet these qualifications, even without being designated a Short, will automatically fall under that category.

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Can Shorts be monetized?

For those who receive a portion of their income from YouTube, Shorts unfortunately won’t help increase your monthly ad-revenue income. According to Google’s support page, Shorts will not have ads on them, meaning they won’t generate any revenue. Views from these videos also don’t contribute to your YouTube Partner Program eligibility, which requires “more than 4,000 valid public watch hours in the last 12 months.”

That being said, if viewers subscribe to your channel because of your Shorts, those subscribers will still be counted toward the 1,000 subscribers necessary to qualify for the YouTube Partner Program.

It’s possible that, as the Shorts feature continues to be fleshed out, creators will have the option to monetize these videos, though at this time there is no clear plan for that.

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Barista Totally Nails Reading Out Ridiculously Specific Starbucks Order


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