How to blur faces in videos and other elements that need to be made unrecognizable. The ready-to-use solution offered by YouTube. To protect the privacy of the subjects depicted in the videos, it may often be necessary to blur their faces.
Regardless of whether you intend to publish your videos on YouTube, on other platforms, or transfer them through other tools (for example, with the primary instant messaging clients, such as WhatsApp or Telegram), it is interesting to highlight that the Google tool for viewing and video sharing also integrates the ability to obscure people’s faces.
Over time, the YouTube editor has undergone multiple interventions, often – unfortunately – not even for improvements. However, the tool still retains a feature that allows you to obscure faces in videos or other elements that you want to be made unrecognizable (names, license plates, personal information, and so on).
When you upload a video to YouTube, you don’t necessarily have to publish it and make it visible to everyone: you can upload a video, take advantage of the feature to dynamically obscure faces, and then download the video in MP4 format, suitably optimized on Google’s servers.
How To Black Out Faces In Videos With The YouTube Editor
To obscure faces and other elements in your videos, access the YouTube Studio home page, click on Upload video and then select video content from your device. It will therefore be necessary to pay the utmost attention to the third step (” Visibility “): here, one must ensure that the Private option has been selected. This way, the video content will be visible only to the person who uploaded it.
At this point, you will have to click on the icon depicting a small pencil located to the right of the preview of the video you just uploaded. In the left column, you will have to click on the Editor item to access the YouTube editor and finally click on the Add blur link below. To make it faster, you can also type https://www.youtube.com/enhance?v= in the browser’s address bar specifying – after ?v= – the alphanumeric ID of the video to be modified.
With a click on the Edit button next to Blur faces, YouTube will examine the video content in the cloud and – after processing – will show a thumbnail of all the faces on the left. By clicking on the thumbnails, it is possible to decide which faces should be automatically blurred and made unrecognizable. Once the various choices have been made, a preview of the final video can be displayed by clicking on the Play button.
The advice is to carefully check that Google’s artificial intelligence has done the job correctly using the Crop button to remove, if necessary, some portions of the video. The custom blurring allows you to apply a blurring effect on other elements represented in the video: you can choose one or more areas to obscure, possibly with the help of pressing the spacebar to stop video playback and resume it.
Interestingly, YouTube recognizes the element highlighted by the user and continues to blur it even when the view changes. By clicking on Save, the video with faces and other blurred elements will be automatically generated and replaced with the original version initially uploaded by the user. With a click on Save as a new video, YouTube will produce a new version leaving the original one unchanged.
From the Details section of YouTube Studio, by clicking on the video of interest and then on the button at the top right depicting three dots, you can finally select Download to download the optimized video in MP4 format. If you do not want to use the video on YouTube, you can delete it by clicking on the three dots in the Uploads tab and then on the item Delete permanently.
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