YouTube needs to change their ratings system

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Many online have been working very hard to bring news of Iran and the events after the election, and one of those methods is to upload and spread news of videos of the protests and other related events. One nearly effortless way to promote a video is to give it a high rating which may result in it making this list for example.

At first glance, the ratings system seems pretty straightforward: videos go from awesome to pretty cool, to worth watching, then nothing special, and finally poor.

There's a problem with this though - take a video like this one. It's a somewhat grainy video called Basij Militia driving truck through the Iranian protesters". It's definitely a video that the world needs to see, but it just doesn't feel right to give the video an Awesome! rating. There's nothing awesome about a truck being driven into protesters, and the image quality is not awesome; nevertheless, it's a video that needs to be promoted.



When you think about it, giving a video five stars simply means "more people should see this video" and one star means "I wouldn't recommend this to anyone". At the moment there's a bit of confusion when you see a video of something you don't like but think should be seen by others -- as another example, let's say you're a supporter of a political candidate and you see his opponent saying something dumb - do you give it five stars because others should see it or do you give it one star because you don't like the person?

Therefore the ratings should probably be replaced with something like the following:

***** Must see video
**** Recommended
*** Worth watching (this one can stay the same)
** Not recommended
* Stay away

Now the ratings system is clear - you're either telling others to watch the video or not.

As for where to suggest this - perhaps here? Let me know if there's a better place to make the suggestion.

16 comments:

David Freiberg said...

I have had exactly the same thoughts about that. You are right

Anonymous said...

Somewhat agree, though I think ratings tend to sway from 1 star only to 5 stars only with very little grey-area.

Anonymous said...

ironically, 'awesome' is precisely the correct term for that video: having the power to inspire fear, reverence or dread.

of course, youtube is using it incorrectly in almost all other cases.

Anonymous said...

There is an interesting parallel with stumbleupon "I like it" and "I don't like it", there are some thing that I am interested in which I don't actually like

Micah Turner said...

This still won't do anything about false flaggers

Vania said...

awesome post! ;-)

Anonymous said...

I thought about this too- I think "Must see" is a good idea for 5 stars

Anonymous said...

***** should mean the world must see this!
Often what we need to be aware of is not awesome
or cool, but necessary. I absolutely agree with your evaluation.

Mr. Anderson said...

There should be two options, and for this example we can use the two of the ones you pointed out:

MUST SEE and STAY AWAY.

Like many others, I've been a YouTuber a long time, and in my opinion you are absolutely right.

Changing the rating system to something a little more specific would would make life on YouTube a lot easier for both producers (they would be able to easily tell which of their videos sunk or sailed), and the average watcher.

Quick, somebody tell YouTube about this idea ASAP!!

Also, if you get the chance, stop by my channel (shameless self-promotion ftw):

http://www.youtube.com/prehack

Devans00 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Devans00 said...

I totally agree with your suggestions to YouTube ratings. I put the suggestion in to YouTube at the following location. http://help.youtube.com/support/youtube/bin/request.py It's under Google Help › YouTube Help › Contacting Support

I chose the selection "Suggest a feature ", Additional Features:, I have another idea

I put a link to this page.

Anonymous said...

yup.

Breathe said...

glad you acted on your thoughts of the rating system and made it public -- Thanks!!

I just submitted the feed back for changing the rating system to youtube. The more people submit the better chances of them changing it! Just takes a couple minutes please do it!

Anonymous said...

youtube has a ratings system?

Marko said...

Agreed 100%! This logic should be applied to Facebook's "Like" link too. For example, I've seen a lot of videos of Iranian protests through Facebook. Hitting Like on videos where people get hurt/shot just isn't right.

Devans00 said...

I totally agree with your suggestions to YouTube ratings. I put the suggestion in to YouTube at the following location. http://help.youtube.com/support/youtube/bin/request.py It's under Google Help › YouTube Help › Contacting Support

I chose the selection "Suggest a feature ", Additional Features:, I have another idea

I put a link to this page.

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