Netflix Adds Two Thumbs Up Button to Improve Recommendations

Posted on April 11, 2022 by Laurent Giret in Music + Videos, Netflix with 9 Comments

Netflix is introducing today a new Two Thumbs Up button to improve its recommendations algorithm. The new button will appear next to the existing Thumbs Up and Thumbs Down buttons, and it will let users tell the algorithm what movies and TV shows they really like.

“A Thumbs Up still lets us know what you liked, so we use this response to make similar recommendations. But a Two Thumbs Up tells us what you loved and helps us get even more specific with your recommendations. For example, if you loved Bridgerton, you might see even more shows or films starring the cast, or from Shondaland,” explained Christine Doig-Cardet, Director of Product Innovation at Netflix.

It’s been a while since Netflix got rid of its five-star rating system in favor of Thumbs Up and Thumbs Down buttons, which are something everyone can easily understand. According to the exec, though, the company “learned over time that these feelings can go beyond a simple like or dislike.”

The new Two Thumbs Up button is now rolling out on all platforms where Netflix is available including smart TVs, the Web, Android, and iOS devices. It will likely take some time for Netflix users to understand what a Two Thumbs Up can do, but Netflix really believes that this new button will help to surface content that better matches its users’ tastes.

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Comments (9)

9 responses to “Netflix Adds Two Thumbs Up Button to Improve Recommendations”

  1. munkeybuziness

    :facepalm: they used to have a five star system which would've, gasp, perfectly handled this situation.

  2. crunchyfrog

    Sounds like a nod to the Siskel & Ebert system if you ask me.

    • jgraebner

      Turns out it was actually a theft from Siskel & Ebert. Their estates still have a trademark on "Two Thumbs Up", so Netflix had to quickly rename this feature shortly after announcing it.

    • waethorn

      It was actually considered Ebert's intellectual property. They sued people that used it while they were alive. The estate owns it now. Either they made it publicly available or Netflix is using it without permission.

  3. christianwilson

    They quickly changed it to "Double Thumbs Up" as "Two Thumbs Up" is trademarked.

  4. darkgrayknight

    If they add the two thumbs down, then we are nearly back to the 5 star system--but with better user understanding (for those that don't get star systems?). Add "meh" or I don't know for not liking, but not disliking and we have a better system than the 5 stars.

  5. seattlemike

    No matter. I never click on either Thumbs Up or Thumbs Down. I give them enough data just by watching things.

  6. bleeman

    Sounds like TiVo's system except you have 3 thumbs up or 3 thumbs down.

  7. iAlrakis

    *sigh* The problem with their recommendations is that the list is full of things I've seen already. That is what they should address. Not the rating system.

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