OffBeat

YouTube adds a ‘crappy VHS’ mode to its video player

YouTube is known for doing quirky things, such as adding a rainbow loading bar to the original Nyan Cat video or making its website do the Harlem Shake. So its latest gimmick isn’t a huge surprise.

To celebrate the 57th “birthday” of the first video cassette recorder, YouTube has added a new VHS mode to its video player. Many videos on the site now have a cassette button near the other video settings (resize, video quality, etc.) that, when clicked, allows you to add squiggly lines, static, and a general crappy quality not experienced since the early ’90s. Keeping the video on pause while cassette mode is on interacts with your mouse to produce the effect.

As YouTube describes it on its Google+ page, it allows you “to relive the magic feel of vintage video tapes.” And since I was getting bored with 720 / 1080p-quality videos, I know this is exactly what I want to do.

Check out a sample video here if you’re curious. (You must click through to the YouTube website to see the mode in action.)

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