Netflix is launching a new feature today that will allow members to give the service more information on the sorts of material they enjoy so that better recommendations may be made. Users will now be able to touch a Two Thumbs Up button beside the current Thumbs Up and Thumbs Down buttons on the page of a TV program or movie on Netflix.
This tells Netflix that you don’t just “like” but “heart” the program. This signal will be used to tailor Netflix’s suggestions even further, including through new features that have yet to be released. Netflix Director of Product Innovation Christine Doig-Cardet noted, “We’ve been hearing from members that it’s crucial for them to discern [between] programs they enjoy and shows they truly love — that that distinction was significant to them.”
She said the business originally tested the functionality with a range of inputs, including a heart button, which some could say is a more visible sign of affection. However, the results of the testing revealed that viewers preferred the Two Thumbs Up option, which seemed like a more logical extension of Netflix’s current rating system. Netflix pointed out that, despite the fact that the button has two thumbs, it does not have twice the weight of the One Thumbs Up button.
“We’re not putting any definite weight behind that thumbing,” Doig-Cardet explained. “It’ll just be another factor taken into account in the recommendations.” The signal will help Netflix determine which episodes are most important to the end-user, so that when they arrive on their site, they are presented with better, more tailored choices without having to browse as much.
Netflix aims to begin testing additional features based on this new type of user feedback after the launch. When Netflix first introduced its “Top 10” feature, which listed the most popular shows on the service, the top 10 shows would also display a badge when you visited their website.
Similarly, Netflix added a “Most Liked” label to identify which shows had received the most thumbs up from Netflix users who had seen them. The new Two Thumbs Up data may lead to a new badge that showed when a show was “most loved,” rather than just liked. Netflix has been working on numerous features to improve consumers’ experience and control over content and suggestions. Netflix just added the ability to delete films from its “Continue Watching” list. Members have also expressed a need for a mechanism to signal if they had already viewed anything when that information was not preserved in their experience, according to the firm.
And they want to conceal titles they don’t want to view, which is different from giving a Thumbs Down, which is more of a way of saying you watched but didn’t enjoy anything. Within the Netflix experience, the firm is also examining how it might better harness the fandom surrounding its series and films.
“People enjoy giving each other suggestions. Doig-Cardet mentioned that they have a lot of fandom groups. Netflix may also make it easier for viewers to find new shows to watch based on cast members or other variables. Fans of “Bridgerton” may, for example, see other series and films starring the cast members or other shows from “Bridgerton’s” production company, Shondaland, suggested to them. The new Two Thumbs Up option will display on the Netflix app in different locations, including the title page, pause screen, and at the end of episodes, for global subscribers adjacent to the Thumbs Up and Thumbs Down buttons. Starting today, the button will be available on TV, the web, and Android and iOS mobile devices.