This Is the Best New Feature YouTube Has Added in Years

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A picture shows a You Tube logo on December 4, 2012 during LeWeb Paris 2012 in Saint-Denis near Paris. AFP—AFP/Getty Images Photo by: AFP—AFP/Getty Images

Convert a video into a GIF in two mouseclicks

YouTube has quietly launched a new GIF creation feature that could trigger an explosion of looping, frenetic clips across the web.

The GIF creator tab, now available on a limited selection of videos, makes selecting and sharing a clip dangerously tempting. The feature is buried in the “Share” tab, beside the usual options to share by “Email” or “Embed.” A new tab labeled “GIF” shows the video laid out frame-by-frame like a film strip. Drag two sliding brackets around any 6 seconds worth of frames and voila, the GIF appears readymade along with shareable links.

The feature was first spotted by former Kickstarter CTO Andy Baio, who enthusiastically spread the news to his Twitter following. So far it only appears beneath a tiny subset of YouTube videos, including some from PBS Idea Channel and Epic Rap Battles of History. Fans of the GIF rejoice, and have patience.

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