Visual anonymity on YouTube30. July 2012 - 8:20 — Sanela Gojak
In mid-July this year YouTube introduced a new tool for its users who put videos on this service, and offered the possibility of bluring the faces that appear in the video, which on this way will enable their identity protection.
"I think that identity protection of the person who talks with human rights activists is far more important. Knowing of this possibility, we can expect more guests in our activities and projects. It turns out that a very small number of people opt for a statement on camera because of fear of consequences", said activist of Civic Action Association from Zenica, Pivic Muhamed.
The decision to protect the anonymity of the person is possible, because YouTube added an option of face blurring to its editing images tool (Face blurring).
In fact, when this option is applied, YouTube automatically detects and blurs out people's faces. The option is found in the "additional features" (Additional Features) section for video improving (Video Enhancements).
The new web tool is designed in aims of protecting human rights activists, and of course for all those who want to protect their identity in this particular way.
We asked Mr. Pivic about how much will the “Civic Action” as the YouTube channel user benefit from this new tool, and how important will it be for B&H?
"I think it will be useful for our future activities, in an attempt to draw people out of lethargy, and universal gloom that has engulfed especially the young generation." said Pivic. He added that the human rights activists are the ones who have to draw attention to young people that their activities can contribute in coming out of the dark tunnel into a better tomorrow.
As a YouTube owner, Google warned that the face blurring can not guarantee a hundred percent anonymity. For example, a landscape background, registration plates on vehicles, clothing, and so on, may indicate one's identity as well as others can recognize the voice of the blurred-face person who says something in the video.
This new tool could save lives, especially in parts of the world where people are exposed to the mercy of totalitarian regimes.
Recently, it happened that Youtube is the place where dozens of videos of rebellions in Syria are uploaded.
If you want to place your video on YouTube, you can previously glance and ensure that the faces who appear on it are now blurred. When you click on "Save as", a new copy of the video will be ready, and then you have the possibility to decide whether to save the original video, or to permanently delete it.