YouTube gives more control over content recommendations

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YouTube has announced changes to how it recommends content to its users in a bid to give people more control on the video sharing platform.

The Google-owned service is also offering viewers greater insight into why some videos are suggested to them, as well as adding an option to remove a channel suggestion, amid concerns about the types of material its algorithm highlights.

A panel of suggested subject matters will now appear on the homepage, which will also be present when browsing the “up next” recommendations displayed alongside the current video a user is watching.

These will be broken down into different topic types related to videos the user has already watched.

Viewers will also be able to tell YouTube not to recommend a particular channel, though videos from those channels may still pop up if you search them or visit the channel page.

YouTube is also addressing questions about why some videos are recommended from channels viewers have not seen before, based on what other viewers with similar interests have liked and watched.

Essam El-Dardiry, YouTube product manager, said: “When we’re suggesting videos based on this, you’ll now see more information underneath the video in a small box.

“Our goal is to explain why these videos surface on your homepage in order to help you find videos from new channels you might like.”

The new features are set to appear on the iOS version of YouTube from Thursday, followed by Android and desktop “soon”, YouTube said.

Chris Price
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