You might remember our post from October last year about the increasingly useless system of star ratings used on online content and shopping sites such as YouTube, eBay and Amazon (“Drowning in high-fives, star ratings used online could soon go under“).
The article identified the somewhat surprising phenomenon that the vast majority of people are too nice when rating things online, rendering aggregated user ratings virtually useless. It also suggested that YouTube was considering dumping the five-star rating system in favour of a straight thumbs up or down.
It seems that that day has almost arrived. In late January, YouTube offered users a sneak peak at what it describes as “one of the biggest redesigns in YouTube history”. In late February, it unveiled more of its new redesign, including a number of new features. While most attention was directed to the reworked playlist and comments organisation, also notable was the thumbs-up/thumbs-down rating system, in place of the old five-star system.
Can’t see the new layout? It’s opt-in only for now. We’ve ben using it for a few weeks and its a vastly improved YouTube experience. Head on over and check it out. You can always opt out and return to the trusty old YouTube layout you’re used to.