On Wednesday, YouTube announced it is gradually rolling out a change that makes the dislike count only viewable to the uploader. The viewers can still use to click the thumbs down button to tune what videos YouTube recommends them, however, you can’t see how many other people disliked that particular video. Content creators can still use the data, among other metrics in YouTube Studio, to gauge their channel’s performance, without having to display the dislikes. The change will be applied across all of its platforms, by the time you read this article it might already be in effect.
For several years YouTube has been trying to deal with the problem of targeted harassment campaigns, which drive massive numbers of dislikes towards the targeted user. So, in March, YouTube experimented with making dislikes counts invisible to users.
Who is impacted by the Dislike count?
The dislikes can decrease the recommendations a creator/video gets, thus, limiting their channel’s reach as well as potentially their income. “YouTube commented it has found this happening to smaller channels more often“. YouTube has also found that many users determine whether to watch a video or not, depending on the number of likes versus dislikes, i.e., the likes-dislike ratio.
We don’t know if hiding the dislike numbers from the public stops dislike mobs, as it is too early to judge. YouTube hasn’t released a statement if a high number of dislikes can still limit the video/channel’s recommendations. What is certain is that YouTube considers the experiment to be a success as it has officially rolled out the change.
I was doing the watching random videos to time pass ordeal on YouTube, and then the huge all caps “DISLIKE” caught my eye, after carefully observing, I understood YouTube stopped showing the number of dislikes. All you can see is that you have disliked the video. We hope that now the mass dislike mobs will not be influencing the content, or will they? After this move by YouTube, the comment that says use me as a dislike button makes a lot of sense.
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