Comments Explorer Overview

I’m excited to have just deployed a working demo of a React app I’ve been developing which allows users to pull comments from Youtube videos and search them by text/author/date/like count.

Click HERE for the Prototype Full Version.

How to use the app:

Just find a Youtube video you have an interest in exploring the comments section of, and copy and paste the URL into the form field on the landing page.  Click the Display Comments button and you’ll be presented with a list you can search through using the filters at the top of the page.  If you want to reply to or edit and delete your own comments, just log in with Google by clicking the button in the top header of the page.

The reason for the App:

I was always frustrated when reading through comments on Youtube videos to see if a question I had about the video topic had been addressed by somebody already.  Since the comments are loaded as you scroll down the page, you can’t just hit CTRL-F and search for what you’re looking for without sitting there for a long time scrolling and scrolling.  With this app, pages of comments are downloaded and searchable by text, date, author and sort-able by like count and newest/oldest making it easy to search for comments that match what you’re trying to find.

Use Cases:

  • Social Media Managing Tool: Monitoring and exploring comments for videos in an easy to use GUI (Graphical User Interface) for small businesses or content creators.
  • Researching a particular topic of interest and seeing what other people  have to say about it in the comments section.  For instance, if someone is interested in a phone or laptop, they could search the comments for “battery” or “good tips”, etc.  This could be for any topic such as a video on a hiking trail, investment related videos and whatever else you can find on Youtube that is of interest.  The possibilities for research and discovery by scouring the depths of the comments section was the original inspiration for creating this app.
  • Finding new ideas for insults or names to hurl at other people.  The comments section can be a very useful resource for this.

Main Features:

  • Search a list of comments for a video by text (phrase or keyword) or by author. 
  • Respond and reply to comments found in search results through the app Interface easily by logging in with Google.
  • Delete or edit comments of which you are the author after logging in with Google.
  • Sort comments by date, like count, thread or spread out individually.

Features in the full version:

  • Dashboard for managing saved comments and previous searches with the ability to organize saved items in category folders (i.e. you could have a “Customer Complaints” folder or a “Response Complete” folder for managing comments posted by customers and viewers).
  • Retrieve up to 40 pages of comments (would equate to potentially 4,000+ comments) for searching, exploring and managing comments on videos of interest.  The demo currently only allows a search limit of 5 pages of comments (~500 comments).
  • Easily Mark comments as spam or remove them from your video comments page as a content creator.

Example of a list of comments on the results page with search filters, etc:

Tools and Technologies Used:

The app consumes the Youtube DATA REST API and is currently awaiting approval for commercialization from Youtube.  It was built with React using Redux, Node.js with Express, PostgreSQL using Knex.js as the ORM.

I hope you find this app useful and fun to use and I would love to hear any feedback or suggestions from anyone who uses the app.

2 thoughts on “Comments Explorer Overview”

    1. Thanks, Jacob. I made the app because I always found trying to find something in the comments section difficult since you had to scroll through the list to load them all to search anything. If you have any suggestions or improvements to the app, I’m all ears. I hope you find it useful and enjoy using it. Thanks for checking it out.
      -Brent

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