Beginning on Wednesday, YouTube will remove public dislike counts, or the visible tally of how many “thumbs down” a video receives, across its platform.
The dislike button will still be accessible so that users can help regulate the recommendations they receive from the video-sharing site’s algorithm, though their dissatisfaction with a video will be kept private. Video creators will be able to view the number of their dislikes alongside all of their other private analytics, but the public number will soon disappear.
Earlier this year, YouTube conducted an experiment with the dislike button and found that users were less likely to engage in “dislike attacking behavior” when the number was not visible. Additionally, the video site confirmed that smaller creators are targeted by this behavior at a higher proportion through its research.
“We heard during the experiment that some of you have used the public dislike count to help decide whether or not to watch a video. We know that you might not agree with this decision, but we believe that this is the right thing to do for the platform,” YouTube wrote in a blog post on Wednesday.
The company said the removal of public dislike counts is part of the site’s plan to improve inclusivity and respect on its platform. “This is just one of many steps we are taking to continue to protect creators from harassment,” the company wrote. “Our work is not done, and we’ll continue to invest here.”
Elsewhere, Facebook will ban advertisers from targeting specific regions, political affiliations or sexual orientations.
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