YouTube eliminating support for RSS/Atom

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  • Updated 2 years ago
YouTube is depricating their API v2 and the replacement, v3, does not
support RSS.  I follow about 100 different channels through NewsBlur and really don't want to be forced to use whatever interface Google decides is best for me this week.  Does anyone have a solution lined up?
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Tazio

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  • pissed at Google

Posted 3 years ago

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Will Reichard

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Sad that Google is leading the way with moves like these. A free and open web...yeah.
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Kazriko Redclaw

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I'm tempted to stop watching youtube videos entirely if they cut that off. Or at least only watch ones that have RSS feeds available elsewhere. (Like Reason.TV, they often feature their videos inside of their normal RSS feeds. All of EEVBlog's videos have another RSS feed too.)
(Edited)
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DMack

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It looks like it should be fairly easy* to make something that takes their JSON output and spits out RSS. It took me like 15 minutes to find the name of the function we need to use just to get somebody's videos, so that's a bad sign, lol.

*Oh, I see there's a rate limit on how often you can call the API. So it will be a pain in the butt but still pretty easy then.
(Edited)
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Samuel Clay, Official Rep

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I personally subscribe to EEVBlog's YouTube RSS, but I think Dave has an alternate feed. Otherwise, if anybody has an easy YouTube -> RSS app, I'd be happy to automatically integrate it.
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Kazriko Redclaw

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Yep, I subscribe to his alternate feed. It actually has a bit more info and the youtube is embedded right in his page.
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Timo_CG

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It would be great if you could automatically upgrade the urls.
I've found the new URLs here:
http://www.reddit.com/r/youtube/comments/339idg/youtube_just_dropped_its_support_for_rssatom_feeds/

For example, 
I'm manually changing these type of URLS:
http://gdata.youtube.com/feeds/base/users/CRASHCOURSE/uploads?alt=rss&v=2&orderby=published&...
OR
https://gdata.youtube.com/feeds/api/users/CRASHCOURSE/uploads
OR
youtube.com/rss/user/CRASHCOURSE

to this:
https://www.youtube.com/feeds/videos.xml?user=CRASHCOURSE
(Note: the CRASHCOURSE is the example channel name in this case)

Another type of URL is for when the channel id is used instead of the channel name.
For example this one from handmade hero ( Channel ID: UCaTznQhurW5AaiYPbhEA-KA )
https://gdata.youtube.com/feeds/base/users/UCaTznQhurW5AaiYPbhEA-KA/uploads
has to be changed to:
https://www.youtube.com/feeds/videos.xml?channel_id=UCaTznQhurW5AaiYPbhEA-KA

Again, it would be great if this could be done automatically. (Without losing the unread items.)
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Shrike

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+1 on the automatic upgrade. I've got over 300 youtube feeds I'm following, most of them releasing stuff maybe once or twice a year. Going through each of them through settings and copy/pasting the channel name to notepad is getting a bit tedious...

Even the crappy new-style official feed would be better than 300 feeds saying "Uploads by Youtube Help" :D
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Tazio

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Just download your OPML file, open in Word, delete the non-YouTube stuff, find and replace to swap out the formatting, then re-upload the file.
(Edited)
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Tazio

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I'm not a programmer, so this is over my head, but will this code do anything https://github.com/ali1234/ytsubs  It sounds like one of the problems with v3 is that you will be limited in the number of API calls per day.  Even if I only get me feeds pulled once every day or two, that's better than them not updating at all.  Google crossed the Don't Be Evil bridge a long time ago...
(Edited)
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tedder42

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that works well- I whipped up a version to pull my subscribed video feed, also sent a pull request back to the author for some minor changes.
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g3styx

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This may be similar to what Stephen posted, but I use this to fetch videos from my YouTube account: http://youtube-rss.f-y.name/user/<username>/  and it's been working fine.

More details are on the actual page: http://youtube-rss.f-y.name/
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Tazio

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From the links on your page it looks like you are making calls to the v2 API.  From what I understand that will stop working next month.  
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g3styx

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Ah, whoops. My apologies. Sorry for the spam.
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DMack

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I put this together, alarmingly quickly:
https://morning-retreat-1911.herokuapp.com/
It seems to be working well with this feed:
https://morning-retreat-1911.herokuapp.com/feed/playlist.php?id=UU0iwHRFpv2_fpojZgQhElEQ

I'll put it up on github shortly if anybody wants. I think I get 50 million API points per day, so it should always be enough, especially if Newsblur respects the channel TTL tag.

Lemme know what you think, feel free to start using it at that URL unless somebody has a better idea!
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DMack

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Lame news for those of us using the feed generator I posted above! Heroku is messing up its free hosting tier so we may have to change our URLs again if this app stops working. The good news is it'll probably end up next to my limited twitter-rss app, and a brand new vine-rss app, if such a thing doesn't exist yet. We can use the "issues" section on the github repo to discuss its fate.
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Kazriko Redclaw

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How much is the non-free heroku hosting tier?
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DMack

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Their new pricing is in "public beta" but it sounds like it'll be $7/month per app for their new "hobby" tier. I mean, DigitalOcean has entire servers for $5/month, but anything per month is a bit of a bummer, especially when they're for "hobby" apps!
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Hampus

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Well, Heroku saves you from having to set up the entire machine I suppose (the way I've understood it anyway) but yea, that is lame.

The new free one isn't enough?

Anyway, I've watched the github repo so I'll see any discussion that shows up.
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Zahid Asam (Pak)

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can you provide with video Id
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owlness

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A link to this page has started showing up as an item in several GData-based YouTube feeds:

https://support.google.com/youtube/answer/6098135

Under the RSS reader option is a link from which an OPML file of your subscriptions may be downloaded:

http://youtube.com/subscription_manager?action_takeout=1

The feed URLs all follow the pattern of:

https://www.youtube.com/feeds/videos.xml?channel_id=XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

These same URLs are also being linked to from channel pages.

Unlike the GData feeds, the items in these are just the text description without thumbnails or duration. The available items do appear current from what I have seen thus far, however.
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Tazio

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Gee, thanks Google for telling all of this ahead of time.  I'm still going to use DMack's solution because I don't think he's going to change it on a whim when he gets cranky.  
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denubisx

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Thanks owlness.

Here's some xsl that I wrote to reformat the subscription manager takeout ... ompl into something that can be copied and pasted for channels subscribed to in youtube.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<xsl:stylesheet xmlns:xsl="http://www.w3.org/1999/XSL/Transform"; version="1.0">
<xsl:output omit-xml-declaration="yes" indent="yes" />
<xsl:template match="*[contains(@xmlUrl, 'youtube.com')]">
* <xsl:value-of select="@xmlUrl"/> - <xsl:value-of select="@title"/>
</xsl:template>
</xsl:stylesheet>
After recovering (subscribing to) almost all the sites that I was following but not subscribed to, I then used the ompl exporter *again* from youtube, and then newsblur's ompl *importer* to just redo my youtube folder.

And now all the channels are regenerated, so all I have to do is fiddle my training and ... status quo ante.
(Edited)
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DMack

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Well, dang! That's news to me. Oh well, I like mine better for its descriptions and thumbnails :)
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Tazio

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News to all of us.  I've been lurking the YT APIv3 thread for a while and no one from Google said a thing until today.  I'm still planning on taking advantage of your hosting if you don't mind.
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Hampus

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I like yours better too, the new official ones only contain a link and an incorrect date... What a mess. So I hope you'' keeps yours up even though there are in fact new official feeds.
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DMack

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Everyone's welcome to use it! I'll be using it too, so I'll notice if it ever breaks :P
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Isgar

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Right now the gdata feeds are still working and I am too lazy to change them. Does anybody know for how long?
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Hampus

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Last I heard they were already killed. They won't give any new items, the only item showing in the old feeds now is a link to http://youtube.com/devicesupport
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Isgar

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Well it showed up, but normal videos continued after that.
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Hampus

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Huh, OK then. Well, what they've said is "we’ll begin shutting down the old version on April 20, 2015" so they'll probably stop working sooner rather than later.

There are some tips in this topic on how to quickly change your feed addresses even if you have a lot of them.
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Samuel Clay, Official Rep

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Good news! I built a real solution to this issue. It's going to be blogged tomorrow morning, but here's the draft of the post if you'd like to read it: http://blog.newsblur.com/private/117731739906/tumblr_nnlgshs0Gx1qh4y7s

And this is already live, so you can either wait a few minutes for your youtube feed to get fetched or just right-click them and insta-fetch. Let me know if you've got any issues. Thanks for your help everybody!
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Samuel Clay, Official Rep

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Sorry about not communicating that I was working on this, but to be fair I wasn't working on this until today, as I was on vacation last week. There's no need to convert all of your feeds back. If it works then you won't gain much by switching the URLs back. 

To make it easier, all you have to do it add the user URL, which you can get to quite easily. NewsBlur will automatically turn it into the correct feed. Getting the channels lined up in your browser shouldn't take more than a few minutes, esp. as YouTube provides a handy list of your subscriptions.
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Hampus

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Not arguing Samuel shouldn't support the newer channel format, but all channels as far as I know are also a user. Switch to any other tab on the channel/user and you'll get the old user URL format like https://www.youtube.com/user/makemagazine/videos from there you even get the user format url if you switch back to the Home tab...

Actually, the only place that seem to use the channel format for the URLs seem to be the link on video pages, otherwise it seems the link is in the user format (a search for make magazine gives links to the user format URL).
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Samuel Clay, Official Rep

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Also, Tazio, when you brought this up you were one of the first to do so. I can't work on every issue. When this hit critical mass I decided to step in and make a better solution that was automatic. The API died last week while I was on vacation. As soon as I got back I figured out a fix.
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Hampus

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Small problem. Adding a new site works, for example, I add https://www.youtube.com/user/BohemianEagle that creates a new site with no problems (though curiously when I check settings api feed as the feed address). But you can't change the URL on a site you've already added, when I tried changing the feed to the address above and click reparse all feed items disappear and the status of the fetch is "SAX Exception (553)".

Obviously it'd be nice if I could switch over to your internal solution without having add all my youtube subscriptions as a new sites as some of them have quite a bit of intelligence training on them.
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Hampus

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OK. If people want to convert existing sites from either the old formats or DMack's solution the URL format you need to use in site settings is http://gdata.youtube.com/feeds/base/users/[USERNAME]/uploads changing to that will work, unlike just using the direct link to the user which works for adding new sites but not when changing settings for an old one.

-----

Now I just need to decide which solution to use for all my feeds...
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Samuel Clay, Official Rep

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I'll be fixing channels on Friday, but if you have any examples of URLs that don't work but should, please let me know. I need to know both the feed URL and the page URL. Obviously I don't need repeats of patterns, and I honestly only think the channels need some help.
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g3styx

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Samuel, what if a particular YouTube feed has duplicate items? Is that something you can fix or want to know about?
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Emma

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Seems like the latest fetch of my Youtube subscriptions didn't work and instead has an error (500) on it.

Feed: https://gdata.youtube.com/feeds/base/users/lamonshee/newsubscriptionvideos

Website url: https://www.youtube.com/subscription_center

I picked up this rss address quite a while ago, so I don't know if with the api changes that have happened since then there would be a different address structure or something I should/could be using, I haven't really been following these changes much.
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francisco delatorre

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hmph, most of the attempts i've made to copy/paste channel/user URLs have worked like a charm, but this one doesn't seem to be working for some reason.  
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCyp1gCHZJU_fGWFf2rtMkCg

since i'm trying your "just use the channel URL" method, i don't have a corresponding feed URL. but i tried plugging the username into the gdata link format above, and that also failed:
https://gdata.youtube.com/feeds/api/videos?max-results=50&amp;alt=rss&amp;orderby=published&amp;author=numberphile2
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Splike

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This is awesome! One thing I noticed, is that the embedded videos don't have a full screen button. Would you be able to add full screen support to all the embedded videos?
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Michael Sindoni

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It looks like Google's export OPML feature for Youtube subscriptions converts everything to the "channel" format.

I say that because I exported my feeds from Youtube when the API switchover happened, and ALL my feeds are now in that channel format. My old feeds are gone.

I hope you can get Newsblur's new Youtube features working with those "channel" feeds because I can't bring myself to try and convert my 50 or so Youtube feeds manually.
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francisco delatorre

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sam, THANK YOU.
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Samuel Clay, Official Rep

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YouTube feeds with a channel_id and not a username have now been fixed. I also added a fullscreen attribute to force the embedded player to show fullscreen. 
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John Morahan

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Awesome!

Say... as long as you're manually generating the embed url, any chance you could use the HTTPS version?
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Marcel Woltex

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I used the feed to include our Youtube videos on our website (and be able to search them using a keyword).

The new URL would be https://www.youtube.com/feeds/videos.xml?user=woltexnl

Problem that I encountered is that when I test it with a Youtube user with a lot of vidoes it only shows the last 15.
https://www.youtube.com/feeds/videos.xml?user=robberthardwell

Not a huge problem at the moment but it will be once we added the 16th video. Is there any way to add commands to show more or show the next 15?

With the old RSS you could give additional commands.
This gave the first 50.
http://gdata.youtube.com/feeds/base/users/robberthardwell/uploads?orderby=updated&v=2&client=ytapi-youtube-rss-redirect&alt=rss&start-index=1&max-results=50

This gaves the next 50:
http://gdata.youtube.com/feeds/base/users/robberthardwell/uploads?orderby=updated&v=2&client=ytapi-youtube-rss-redirect&alt=rss&start-index=51&max-results=50

I tried these additional comments to the new feed but they don't work. :(
Any alternative?

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Hampus

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1. This isn't exactly the correct place to ask for help regarding Youtube's RSS feeds or their format/options.
2. Feeds are almost always limited to a couple most recent items. If you want to show more than that you have to do what all feed readers do and save/remember the old items.
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Kenny

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