The video company just announced it will start implementing @name identifiers for accounts across the platform.
Creators will hopefully gain visibility and have an easier time reaching audiences with specific account handles. While YouTube will start the transition process this week, certain users will be able to pick their handle before others. Who gets to choose first will likely be related to overall popularity on the platform, number of subscribers, and activity on the channel. This change applies to Shorts, channel pages and other areas across the platform.
YouTube seems to be hoping that creators not on the platform will be tempted to join, or those who have been neglecting their account will become active again.
The media company is likely making some of these changes to invest in its Shorts platform, of which TikTok is a competitor. YouTube announced monetization and watermarks to Shorts, giving users more of a reason to choose it as a content creation source. Creators will be able to keep 45% of the revenue generated from Shorts.
While increasing competition between services will give users more options, it will be interesting to see if this is a worthwhile investment for YouTube to make.