Today, YouTube announced it will begin testing what could be a significant change to itsIt will try hiding the dislike count on videos from public view. The company out a few different designs where dislike counts are no longer shown; however, none will see the “dislike” button itself removed entirely.
Theon Twitter but then explained further in a community forum post that the goal is not to remove the ability for users to signal they disliked a video — creators will still have access to the video’s like and oppose count from YouTube Studio. Dislikes will still help power YouTube’s recommendation algorithms.
Instead, YouTubedislikes are based on creator feedback. “We’ve heard from creators that the public dislike counts can impact their well-being and may motivate a targeted campaign of dislikes on a creator’s video,” the announcement reads. “So, we’re testing designs that don’t include the visible like or dislike count to balance is accounted for and shared with the creator.”
Of course, there can be a sort of mob mentality that accompanies the use of the Like and Dislike buttons on YouTube. But seeing the dislike count can also help signal to others when videos are clickbait, spam, or misleading, which can be helpful.
YouTube showed off one potential design being tested that shows the same button layout, but instead of several dislikes, the word “Dislike” appears underneath the thumbs-down icon. There will be no way to opt out of the test if you see the changes occur when you’re logged into YouTube — you’ll only be able to share feedback, the company notes.
To be clear, however, YouTube isn’t yet committed to removing the dislike count for everyone at this release designs like this more broadly.. The feedback from this test will help inform YouTube as to if, when, or how it will
YouTube wouldn’t be the first to experiment with removing metrics from a. Instagram has also been engagements (Likes) to make the experience feel authentic and less about chasing clout. And Facebook this released the “Like” button from Facebook Pages in favor of the more accurate “Followers” measurement.
However, when removing just the dislike count and not the likes, viewers may misunderstand a video’s actual popularity. The company hasn’t said how long the tests will run before it has enough feedback to decide on the feature’s permanence.