Citizens continue to play a critical role in supplying news and human rights footage from around the world. YouTube is committed to creating even better tools to help them. According to the international human rights organization WITNESS’ Cameras Everywhere report, “No video-sharing site or hardware manufacturer currently offers users the option to blur faces or protect identity.” YouTube will be the first.

A new tool on YouTube has launched that will allow users to obscure faces within videos with the click of a button. Once the video is chosen, the user can edit within the Video Enhancements tool can go to Additional Features and click the “Apply” button below Blur All Faces. Before publishing, a preview of what the video will look like with faces blurred will appear. After saving changes to the video, a new copy is created with the blurred faces.

Visual anonymity in video allows people to share personal footage more widely and to speak out when they otherwise may not. Because human rights footage, in particular, opens up new risks to the people posting videos and to those filmed, it’s important to keep in mind ways to protect yourself and the people in your videos.