If you're a YouTuber who has found themselves on the receiving end of trolling or just plain old hate in the comments you'll know that just turning them off is probably the best way to go. But YouTube has now rolled out another option that it hopes will act as a happy middle ground between letting people comment and blocking them for good.
The new feature, pausing of comments, allows people to pause comments to prevent new ones from being added. Those that are already approved will remain visible, but the addition of new ones will stop until the YouTuber chooses to reenable them. YouTube says that the aim here is to give people more flexibility rather than just turn comments off and lose all of those that were previously there.
The new feature is one that YouTube has been experimenting with since October with TechCrunch reporting that the experiment group reported they felt less overwhelmed when trying to manage the inflow of comments. Pausing them will allow time for the previous comments to be vetted without the backlog constantly being added to, something that can no doubt help with the anxiety created by having to vet the comments in the first place.
YouTube is also now testing a new generative AI feature that will try to automatically summarize the topics being discussed in the comments section of videos, although it is only available to those who pay for YouTube Premium right now and might stay that way. Users will also be able to ask questions about YouTube's content and have the AI chatbot respond.