YouTube will experiment with a selection of users who will be prevented from seeing how many “dislikes” a video on the platform has received in a bid to make people feel better.
On Wednesday, the Google-owned site said the decision to hide dislike tallies for some users was prompted by “creator feedback around wellbeing and targeted dislike campaigns”.
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The dislike button isn’t going anywhere but similar to what Instagram has done with the like counter, the tally won’t be public knowledge.
“For viewers, if you’re in the experiment, you can still like or dislike a video to share feedback with creators and help tune the recommendations you see on YouTube,” the company added.
Commenters on social media questioned how it would help creators being “bullied” if they’re now the only ones who can see the dislike count, while others said they rely on the counter to determine whether they’ll enjoy a piece of content before they start watching it.
YouTube’s action is the latest by a tech platform trying to get people to be nice to one another on the internet.
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TikTok recently rolled out new features it claimed were aimed at fostering “kindness and community” like the ability to filter comments and by prompting users to “reconsider posting a comment that may be inappropriate or unkind”.
Facebook is going to start letting you turn off comments for your posts and do the same for pages, mirroring similar moves recently made by Twitter.