YouTube explains why it is hiding dislike counts on videos

Virginia Glaze
YouTube dislike count

After experimenting with video dislikes earlier this year, YouTube has announced that it will officially hide the number of dislikes on videos across the platform.

YouTube has rolled out a major change for viewers and content creators alike, stating that it will now remove the dislike count on all videos on the site.

This change comes after YouTube’s experiment in March 2021, when the platform tested site and application designs that hid the number of dislikes from viewers.

It looks like this adjustment has stuck, as on November 10, 2021, YouTube claimed the change will be a mainstay fixture moving forward.

However, this development won’t affect content creators’ own videos. They will still be able to view the amount of dislikes that their videos receive, and the like to dislike ratio will also affect recommendations (the videos that YouTube feeds viewers based on their preferences).

YouTube’s initial decision to remove dislike counts came as a response to “dislike attacks,” where viewers would mass-dislike a creator’s videos as a means of harassing them.

YouTube reveals why it will hide dislike counts on videos

“We want to create an inclusive and respectful environment where creators have the opportunity to succeed and feel safe to express themselves,” the platform stated in a blog post.

“This is just one of many steps we are taking to continue to protect creators from harassment. Our work is not done, and we’ll continue to invest here.”

This isn’t a new idea, by far; YouTube bandied about the idea of removing dislike counts on videos as far back as 2018 — the same year that YouTube Rewind became the most-disliked video on the site.

YouTube Rewind 2018 most disliked
YouTube Rewind 2018 quickly became the most-disliked video on the platform.

In 2019, the site brought up the issue again, with YouTube’s Project management director Tom Leung claiming the platform was discussing ways to mitigate “dislike mobs.” After years of debate, it seems the site has crafted a firm response to these dislike campaigns, although the response has been decidedly mixed.

Many users have expressed a “dislike” for this development, asking YouTube for greater options when it comes to preventing harassment via dislike or hate mob on the site.

This latest dislike count change will begin to gradually roll out for users starting November 10, 2021.