Newest not always best
People are generally used to YouTube suggesting what they should view next. People know those suggestions are algorithm-driven.
Until now, however, the subscriptions feed has shown logged-in users videos from their favourite channels in a ‘most recent video first’ fashion.
Apparently, since early 2018, that hasn’t universally been the case.
Personalising view priorities
For selected test subjects, YouTube is shuffling the order of videos in their subscriptions feed.
YouTube’s official Twitter account explained the move in a reply to a user query:
‘We find that some viewers are able to more easily find the videos they want to watch when we order the subs feed in a personalized order vs always showing most recent video first.’
So, for experiment subjects, videos from subscribed channels are no longer appearing in chronological order.
Nothing’s set in stone
If Twitter conversations are anything to go by, first reactions are unfavourable. But, Twitter groupthink is not in itself an actionable metric.
YouTube’s tweet officially acknowledges that anachronous Feed presentation has been tested, but it will only hit the mainstream if test data shows it has potential.
Do potential user engagement issues with YouTube’s subscriptions feeds outweigh the possible positives of its targeting algorithm?
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