Youtube’s HTML5 Player

html5-logoI recently noticed that the progress bar on many YouTube videos no longer responded to my clicks or keyboard shortcuts. Because I use YouTube as a resource to transcribe material for students and gigs it was really frustrating not to be able to pause/fast-forward/rewind videos. So I started Googling for a solution. It took me a few days to identify the issue: YouTube’s new HTML5 Video Player. It looks exactly the same as the default Flash Player but wasn’t functioning properly for me in Chrome. Apparently you should be able to opt out of the HTML5 Player using this link: but even after selecting the Flash Player and clearing my cookies and restarting my browser the issue persisted. A little more searching eventually led me to the YouTube Center Extension. (Versions are available for most major browsers.) This extension allowed me to override the HTML5 player and return to the Flash Player and a fully functional YouTube experience. In addition to being able to select the Flash Player, YouTube Center also has dozens of other options allowing users to select the player size, auto-resolution preferences, auto-repeat, keyboard shortcut enhancements, and even the ability to download video and audio files.

I don’t know if everyone will experience the same issues I had with the HTML5 Player. I’m pretty sure it is supposed to work as well as the Flash Player and I’d be happy to use it if it did. Until then, the extension is a great problem-solver for me.

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