If you’ve tried to search for a video in YouTube over the last couple of days then you may have noticed that the YouTube Search interface has had a total makeover. ‘Search Options’ have become ‘Filter & Explore’ and offer a much wider variety of filters and means to find exactly what you’re looking for.
YouTube’s search options used to let you filter according to only a few categories—Relevance, Upload Date, View Count, Rating. Now you can filter according to a much wider variety of categories including uploaded today, uploaded this week, uploaded this month, long format, channel, playlist, movie, show, rental, and more. You can search for videos with closed captions, videos in HD, and more.
The new search also offers a new Explore section that offers different topics that you may be interested in, based upon your search (similar to YouTube Topics, which was launched in the YouTube TestTube last November). In the Explore section, YouTube also lists links to popular Partners that fit the criteria of your search. But enough talk…let’s walk through a video search to see how the new interface works.
We’ll search for ‘Stop Motion’.
First Things First
The first thing that you’ll notice when you do a search is that a number of tags will appear next to the Filter & Explore drop down. In this instance we’ve got tags that fit with ‘Stop Motion’ like Joe Penna (MysteryGuitarMan). By clicking on these tags we can search for these terms instead of our original search. By clicking on the plus signs next to these terms we can add them to our original search. As you add terms, your search will be filtered in real time.
As you can see, our results include a lot of seemingly irrelevant transformer-related topics (i.e. prime, autobot). This is likely due to the fact that YouTube Partner Patrick Boivin has a very popular Transformers stop motion animation. There may still be some kinks left to work out. Additionally, you won’t get results here for every search. For instance, when I searched for ‘Stop Motion Animation’ I didn’t get any additionally topic offerings.
I should also note that you can still search using the old Relevance, Upload Date, View Count and Rating filters using the dropdown menu on the right side of the screen.
If you click on ‘Filter & Explore’ then the search filters will drop down. Click on the filters that you’d like to add. As you can see, I’ve chosen stop motion videos that were uploaded this month in HD. I am about to add the Partner video filter as well. Note that in between adding filters you may have to click on ‘Filter & Explore’ to get the drop-down menu back. Note that you can also mix and match with topic filters from the top as well, as we discussed previously.
If you want to remove a filter from your search, simply click on it at the top of the page, as in the image below.
Similar to the Filter section, Explore also lets you add tags to your search (by clicking on the plus sign) or searching for a whole new topic entirely (by clicking on that topic). In this section, YouTube also lets you click to find videos from a specific user or website, relevant to the topic you are searching for. If you click on the name it will search for videos only from that user. If you click on the plus sign it will restrict the original thing you searched for (in this case, stop motion) to videos from that source. In the screenshot below I am clicking the plus sign to find stop motion videos created by Patrick Boivin.
You’ll notice that when I do that it adds ‘@patrickboivin’ to my search field, alongside ‘stop motion’. You can search for all the videos by a particular user by putting an @ before their name in a search. For instance, a search for @socialtimesinc turns up results for all of the videos on our Social Times YouTube channel.
I’m really excited about this new updated YouTube search. I’ve always wished that there was some way to search using multiple features at the same time, and now it’s possible. Have you used the new Filter & Explore YouTube Search yet? How do you like it?
Megan O’Neill is the resident web video enthusiast here at Social Times. Megan covers everything from the latest viral videos to online video news and tips, and has a passion for bizarre, original and revolutionary content and ideas.