YouTube Removes Dislikes

Disney recently released a video of their their new Star-Wars-themed hotel. It probably has a lot of dislikes. I don't know how many dislikes it has because YouTube removed dislike counts from its platform.

YouTube claims the reason for removing dislikes is to protect small creators. This is obviously bullshit. What small creators want is the ability to get discovered. The ability to discover new creators is maximized when viewers can quickly identify what kind of content is good. When viewers can't tell what is good, we default to familiar incumbents.

The dislike count used to be the fastest way for me to tell whether a video was good or bad. How am I supposed to tell if a video is bad? Answer: I'm not. YouTube purposefully removed the dislike count in order to prevent users from quickly assessing whether a video is bad.

YouTube has demonstrated repeatedly, over many years, that they don't care about and are out-of-touch with their creators through stuff through their demonitization policies and their copyright strike system. YouTube Rewind 2018 included celebrity Will Smith but not PewDiePie.

YouTube wants its viewers to watch bad content. This isn't a terminal objective. It is just a means to an end. YouTube wants to control what is popular on its platform so that its viewers will watch videos by rich, powerful organizations like Disney. YouTube want its viewers to watch corporate advertising. Corporate advertising just happens to bad because of Sturgeon's law.

The removal of dislike counts is bad for viewers. It is bad for small creators. It is bad for medium creators. It is bad for democracy. YouTube co-founder Jawed Karim believes this change will cause a decline of the platform. Why deliberately corrupt your platform? Because YouTube has matured. It is run by the kind of people who win battles for control of large monopolistic organizations. YouTube is run by people who thrive in a corrupt environment.

"Don't be Evil" is no longer Google's Alphabet's motto.