Congratulations to Xiaonan, the talent behind the portraits featured on ThePortraitArt. This channel received the most votes for the December On The Rise poll, and will be featured on the YouTube homepage today.

Xiaonan Sun is a self-taught artist, and producing lifelike portraits is his passion. Since 2008, Xiaonan has used YouTube to document his talent through timelapse videos that showcase not only the final product but the full creative process. Some of his most popular pieces are pop-culture celebrity likenesses, but he also produces personal portraits by commission. And if you thought traditional portrayals and media were the limits of Xiaonan’s skill, you’re in for a treat: he can create the illusion of reality with his portraits, and he doesn’t limit himself to using simply pencils and erasers

Here are a few words from our December On The Rise star himself:

I make my art videos to share my creation process, which I think could be every bit as compelling as the final product. But I also make these videos to relax your mind, calm your thoughts and uplift your mood. After all,  today's people are so often stuck in thoughts, dealing with its worries and day to day  concerns, that most rarely calm their mind down to feel the presence of the moment, which is the only thing there really is and ever could be. I want more people to be in this state more often, to see things not through the limited and rigid mind or the fearful ego, but through a heart that loves to express and create. I like to express my deep appreciation for all those who voted for me and watch my videos, and my sincere gratitude to youtube for  providing the canvas, for my channel is a drawing, and each video a stroke on its paper.

If you’ve enjoyed this monthly On The Rise blog series and want to see more rising YouTube partners, check out our On The Rise channel or look for our playlists on the browse page. Keep an eye out for next month’s blog post, as your channel may be the next one On The Rise!

Devon Storbeck, YouTube Partner Support, recently watched “Downhill extreme: Rollerman overtaking motocycle!


We know there have been issues with subscriptions and publishing reliability for some time, and today we wanted to give you an update on the issues we're facing and where we are with resolving them. We know we haven't met your expectations with this, and here's how we're trying to fix that.

To start, here’s some background on how publishing works at YouTube. Delivering your videos is a two phased system—we process your video and then we deliver that video to your subscribers.

Processing your video
Our engineers are working hard to make video processing even faster, more reliable, and continue adding related features that make your life easier like resumable uploads. We have more to do here in 2012, and will keep you updated with our progress.

Delivering your video
Over the last few weeks we’ve rolled out a subscriptions delivery system that’s 20 times faster and more powerful, able to deliver your videos to even more subscribers as your Channels continue to grow. It’s like upgrading from a unicycle to a racecar.

Once our processing improvements are complete, all the pieces should fall into place to make publishing a seamless and uneventful experience (as it should be). Until that happens, here are some tips to avoid common problems.

The 0% Published problem
What it means: What this generally means is that the video is waiting on processing to complete, before attempting to publish. Until the video has processed in all formats, the status will stay at 0%.

What you can do: Don’t delete your video and reupload. Just wait for your video to become available on all formats you would expect--for a 1920x1080 video that means everything from 240p through 1080p--and then the 0% published should go away very quickly once all formats have processed.  

What we’re doing to fix this: We’ve removed the confusing 0% published notification from the new video manager.  The icon will now say “Sending to subscribers feeds” instead.

Published video isn’t appearing in feeds
What it means: In almost all reports of this problems, the issue isn’t that videos aren’t appearing in feeds at all, but it’s that the videos are not appearing at the top of the feed, in chronological order. This is because the position of videos in the chronology of the feeds reflects the uploaded time rather than published time. This commonly happens when you upload a video as private or unlisted, then make it public 48 hours later.

What you can do: If you expect to keep your video private or unlisted for an extended period of time before marking it public, consider using scheduled publishing to ensure it gets to the top of user feeds.

What we’re doing:  We’re looking at ways to make sure the order of videos reflects the published time rather than the original upload time.

As we are rolling out improvements, we’ll continue to provide updates through the Creator Blog and please keep sharing your feedback in the Partner Forum.

David Boyle, YouTube Staff, recently watched "Wham! - Last Christmas."

You're already driving over 3 billion views every day around the world--whether it's on a laptop or phone. We're excited to share that you can now increase that reach even further: through the Xbox 360--on TV.

Through the YouTube application on the Xbox 360 that we announced last week, you can reach your fans in ways that you never could before--and engage with them even more. This is particularly valuable for partners who may have gaming related-content in their videos.

Watch some of the things that gaming partners are saying about the experience below.

Sang Kim, Gaming Partner Development, recently watched “Mahalo Video Games Guide: Youtube for Xbox."

You put a lot of work into your videos, so we’re putting a lot of work into making sure they look their best on YouTube. Today we’re rolling out an updated Video Manager with some new features that’ll help you handle all your videos. To try out the new design, go to the Video Manager and click “try it now.”

Highlights of the new Video Manager are:
  • Simplified top and left navigation bars to help you get to the tools you need more quickly
  • Icons to indicate privacy status, if monetization is enabled and scheduled publish status
  • Badges to indicate whether videos are HD, Creative Commons and/or captioned
  • A new look that’s consistent with our fresh coat of digital paint

We also cleaned up our suite of editing tools and improved the navigation used to get between these tools:

To learn more, watch this video walkthrough or check out our Help Center.

Have feedback? On the left side of the page click the “send feedback” button, where we’ll be reviewing all of your comments on the design. We’re planning on fully releasing this interface early next year, so submit your ideas before then. You can also share your thoughts in our forum.

Dan Auclair, Web Developer, recently watched “Halloween Light Show 2011 - Party Rock Anthem.”

From Justin Bieber to The Gregory Brothers, YouTube is a platform for anyone with a passion for performing to showcase their musical talents and get noticed across the web. Smart copyright management is an important part of this online video service—it helps songwriters and performers to be appropriately compensated for their works, while also allowing for those works to be used in new ways.

YouTube has had a longstanding commitment to solving the really tough challenges around online copyright—how to manage content rights in a quickly evolving technology world. We’ve already invested tens of millions of dollars in content management technology such as Content ID and, with over 3,000 major media companies using it, we’ve come a long way in just a few years. But we want to keep pushing things forward.

Today, we’re excited to announce that we’ve acquired RightsFlow, a New York-based company that helps songwriters, recording artists, record labels, distributors and online music services manage music rights. As new ways of consuming music have emerged, RightsFlow has been at the forefront of solving the complex issues of licensing and royalty payment management. We couldn’t think of a better team to bring on board to further YouTube’s support of the creative community.

By combining RightsFlow’s expertise and technology with YouTube’s platform, we hope to more rapidly and efficiently license music on YouTube, meaning more music for you all to enjoy, and more money for the talented people producing the music. From music videos to live-streamed concerts, YouTube has become a launch-pad for both aspiring musicians and more established independent artists—which is why we have and will continue to invest in tools that make it easier for copyright owners to manage their content online.

David King, Product Manager, recently watched "Danny Macaskill - Industrial Revolutions.”

With the holidays upon us, many of you are busy decorating your homes to get into the spirit of the season. What better time to bring this decorative mood to your home on YouTube — your Channel — and help your audience to get more into your videos?

As part of the
announcement last week of our new look, we unveiled Channel layouts to help you better showcase your videos. Since this announcement, we’ve been encouraged by data showing logged in usage and subscriptions on the rise. So, we’re moving forward to bring the new YouTube to more of you. Starting this week, all newly created and existing basic Channels will be transitioned to the new design. YouTube Partners can opt into the new design at any point, but their Channels will not be automatically transitioned at this point. When you visit “My Channel” on YouTube, you’ll see your Channel in the new design, and the “Edit Channel” button that’s your gateway to exploring the various layouts. Here are some pointers to help you get started:

Fill your feed with great videos: Are you sharing your likes, favorites and subscriptions? Publishing these activities to your feed will keep your Channel fresh with new entertaining videos, even when you’re not uploading videos.

Feature your very best content: Have videos or playlists you want to showcase? Add the featured tab to your Channel and choose a template that works best for you. You can do this in just a few clicks -- get started by clicking “Edit Channel.”

Write a unique description: Create a description that tells your visitors what to expect from your Channel. Click the “Edit” button in the top right corner of your Channel. You can also add links to Facebook, Twitter and other websites.

Share the love: Our viewers look to you for great videos on YouTube. Give the gift of your suggestions by adding the "Other Channels" feature, and encourage other Channel owners to do the same.

Many YouTube Channels have already made the switch, and we’re hoping you’ll join them. You’ll receive the new Channels design over the next few days. Play with the templates and design options to make your channel the most inviting home for your audience. Remember, you can always
switch back to the old design by clicking the “Switch back” button in the Appearance tab should you need more time to get your Channel ready for primetime.

Looking for even more inspiration?
Visit a gallery of examples, or watch a few YouTube creators tour their new Channels.

We can’t wait to see what you do with your place!

The YouTube team

Today’s guest post comes from Hank and John Green, aka the VlogBrothers, with a special message about how you can dramatically increase the level of awesome that exists around the world this year.

In 2007, we asked everyone on YouTube to upload videos for their favorite causes and charities on December 17. We wanted to help raise awareness and donations for awesome causes that we all care about—big and small, from near and far. This YouTube community-driven movement became known as Project for Awesome.

This year is now the 5th anniversary of Project for Awesome, and we want you to help make it more awesome than ever. Here’s how:

Make an innovative video promoting your favorite charity and upload it on December 17 starting at Noon ET. Make it original, and most importantly, make it awesome. Use this thumbnail as your thumbnail for the video, and tag it with "p4a2011” (here’s info about using thumbnails). It’s our hope that if we all upload on the same day, all of YouTube and the Internet will be taken over by a flurry of awesomeness.

Awesome waits for no one, so here are some ideas to get started:
  • Organize a campaign with your community and film it. This can be anything from a bake sale to rebuilding a village. There are many non-profits that allow you to build teams such as Charity:Water, Kiva, and 
  • Check out some of our favorite Project for Awesome videos below. 
  • Take one of your existing videos and spend some time using the YouTube Video Editor to make it even better.
On December 17, we hope all of you around the Internet and around the world upload videos for your favorite causes. Then, share your favorites and donate to the causes you think are awesome. Here are some past videos to get you started.
Thanks for reading, and don’t forget to be awesome.

Hank and John Green of the VlogBrothers recently watched “Pas De Deux - Sean Malone (Remix).”

On Monday, December 12th, the YouTube Partner Support team will host a partner meet-up in Los Angeles. During the meet-up we will film a YouTube Partner Panel featuring KalebNation, FinalCutKing and BlackBoxTV. These partners will be answering questions submitted by YouTube users like you!

Is there something you'd like to ask KalebNation about his YouTube history? Want FinalCutKing’s advice on best practices? Wondering what BlackBoxTV considers his best moment on YouTube? You have until next Monday to submit your questions (and vote for others) here to be answered during the panel:

Visit in late December to watch the panel!

Each month, we find four YouTube Partners whose subscriber numbers are growing but haven’t yet hit 100,000 for our monthly On The Rise program. December’s candidates are in, and we encourage you to check out their videos and vote for your favorite in the top right corner of the Official YouTube blog by December 12 at 5pm PT. The channel with the most votes at the end of the week will be featured on the YouTube homepage and videos page.

To close out 2011, the On The Rise candidates this month are as talented and diverse as ever, including an ESL teacher, a pop culture vlogger, a skateboard videographer and a portrait artist. Vote for your favorite by December 12, and we’ll announce the partner selected on the YouTube blog on December 19.

Jennifer is a multi-lingual ESL/EFL teacher based in Boston, and her channel offers a range of free instructional videos that address the ins and outs of the English language.

With a 5-year history on YouTube, Bryony has developed a loyal following for her channel’s vlogs. She hails from London but often fools her viewers with the American accents she uses as she comments on everything from pop culture to spiders.

Nigel is a talented videographer from Washington whose subject is capturing the thrills and skills of skateboarders of all ages. His videos highlight skateboarding tricks, trick tips and even advice for other skateboarding filmmakers.

Using only pencils and erasers, self-taught artist Xiaonan Sun from New York crafts lifelike portraits, but he tries not to focus exclusively on the final product. His channel is full of timelapse videos that offer viewers a glimpse of the creation process.

In past months, winners like AlexanderCarpenter and evmoneyTV have seen growth in their audience and video engagement thanks to your support. If you’re interested in checking out more rising YouTube Partners, visit our On The Rise channel, which features nominees, trending partners and monthly blog winners.

Devon Storbeck, YouTube Partner Support, recently watched “BLACK FRIDAY SHOPPING PRANK!.”

A couple of weeks ago we gave you all a preview of our new Channel redesign, and a chance to play around with it before we shared it with the broader YouTube community. Today’s the day that we’re making this new design available to anyone with a YouTube Channel, as well as making some other site changes that you can read about below. We believe that behind every great video is a great Channel, and all of these changes are designed to encourage people to get to know your Channel a whole lot better and to watch more of your videos as a result.

New Channels design
First up, new Channels design! You can review the main changes being made here. To opt your Channel into the new design, click the blue “Try the new design” button on the top of your Channel page. Once you’ve opted your channel in, your Channel and its new design will be public to other users. You can switch back to the old Channels design by clicking the “Switch Back” button in the appearance tab of the Edit Channel menu on your new Channel. You can switch back and forth as many times as you like, and whichever version you’re opted into is the version that will be public. If you’re still playing around with the new Channels design, you can stay with the old one while you sort things out, but in a few months, we will be bringing everyone over to the new design.

Since we previewed the new design with you all, we’ve seen a number of spiffy new Channels, like TheCraftyGemini, BarelyPolitical, FinalCutKing, ClevverTV, and DeStorm - you can click through on those links to see how the new designs look. Some partners also made videos about the features of the new Channels that are working well for them - click here to view the playlist.

So what does this mean for you?
The main action here is to work on setting up your Channel in the new formats, as more and more YouTube visitors will come to expect the new look. As we said, you’ll have a few months before you have to make the change, but it’s great to be ahead of the game. You can check out the full list of things to do at the Help Center.

Along with the new Channels design being made available to everyone on the site, we’re also making a couple of other important changes today.

A new homepage
To help viewers get more into YouTube, we’re making it easier for people to find and follow Channels when they arrive on the homepage.

On the left side of the homepage people can create their personal, customizable YouTube Channel line-up. To start creating your own, sign in, or create a YouTube account. Then, click on ‘Add Channels’, and subscribe to the Channels that appeal to you. The center homepage feed is also a great way to discover and explore new content. You can link your YouTube account to Google+ and other social networks to see what your friends are sharing, and can switch between feeds by clicking on different Channels on the left.

For step-by-step instructions on the new YouTube homepage, go to our Help Center.

So what does this mean for you?
Subscriptions - these were always important … they’re now more important than ever before. As people set up their new home pages they’ll be reviewing the subscriptions they have and considering new ones, so be sure to keep encouraging people to subscribe, and making it worth their while to do so.
Upload regularly - when people add new Channel subscriptions, they’ll see how often you upload (your average number of videos per week), so remember to program consistently and regularly so you’ll appeal to people who want a regular delivery of great videos.
Create the killer feed for your subscribers - videos that you like and favorite and put into playlists will be even more prominent to your subscribers as part of their feed, so take care in your site activity and think about the overall experience you’re creating for them - it’s about more than just the videos you upload.

A new overall design
To bring the new homepage and Channels designs together, we’ve also applied a fresh coat of digital paint across the whole site. In July, we unveiled an experimental design called Cosmic Panda. We’ve used your feedback to improve our overall design, and today, we’re presenting a cleaner and simpler YouTube, with a consistent background, bigger video thumbnails, and a cleaner watch page.

So what does this mean for you?
This won’t change your day-to-day experience on the site very much, but of course, we hope it’s something that encourages people to stay on the site for longer to watch more of your great videos.

You’ll see all these changes today when you visit, and we’ve put together an instruction manual (and video) to help.

A new Analytics experience
As we announced yesterday, we built a brand new YouTube Analytics tool (formerly YouTube Insight) that you can reach inside of your account or at

So what does this mean for you?
This new tool is much simpler to use than Insight, and lets you compare more statistics than ever before to help build bigger and more engaged audiences, earn more money, and make better videos.

We’re always innovating and testing new stuff out to make the experience the best it can be for you. We rely on your feedback to figure out when we've gotten it right and when it needs further tweaks. So let us know what you think in the blue feedback link on the bottom right of We’ll be closely monitoring this forum, and also reading the comments on this blog.

Everyone responds to change differently ;-) When we make significant changes like this it’s hard to please everyone, but we really believe that they will benefit the entire YouTube community over time, and allow us to remain a place for you to be successful in your YouTube careers. Here’s to a great 2012 for all of you.

The YouTube team