Netflix decides they value thumbs more than stars

March 16, 2017


Speaking at a press briefing, Netflix's VP of Product Todd Yellin told reporters they'd be eliminating the five star rating and moving towards a thumbs up and thumbs down system similar to Pandora. According to Variety:

However, over time, Netflix realized that explicit star ratings were less relevant than other signals. Users would rate documentaries with 5 stars, and silly movies with just 3 stars, but still watch silly movies more often than those high-rated documentaries.

"We made ratings less important because the implicit signal of your behavior is more important," Yellin said.

In addition to the thumbs ratings, they'll be attaching a percentage-match feature that gives a numerical value to how closely a show or movie will match an individual's taste, although shows that fall under 50% won't display a rating. So in case you were deciding between the new Adam Sandler movie or Memento, you won't have to rely on the overly broad rating of a thumbs up. If this is all too complicated, it's basically the same system as YouTube or PornHub. I mean, wait, what's PornHub? I've never even heard of or been to that site.

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