Mozilla recently raised an inefficiency issue with some feedback buttons on the YouTube platform. These are the buttons “I don’t like”, “Not interested”, “Stop recommending the channel” and “Delete from the history of watched videos”. Even when users tell YouTube they aren’t interested in certain types of videos, similar recommendations keep coming in, according to new research from Mozilla.

The study was based on video recommendation data from over 20,000 YouTube users. Obtaining the results, the researchers said that ” YouTube should respect user feedback about their experience and treat it as meaningful signals about how people want to spend their time on the platform “.

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More details on the study conducted by Mozilla

In order to collect data from the videos and real users, Mozilla researchers recruited volunteers who used “Regrets Reporter”. It’s Mozilla’s browser extension that helps you eliminate harmful YouTube recommendations, clickbait, and all the other content you wish you’d never see. Thus, this extension superimposes a general “Stop recommending” button on the YouTube videos watched by the participants.

On the back-end, users were randomly assigned to a group, so different signals were sent to YouTube each time they clicked the button placed by Mozilla. Next, the researchers evaluated machine learning to decide if the recommendation was too similar to the video a user had rejected. The researchers concluded that the tools offered by YouTube are still insufficient to ward off unwanted content.

How did YouTube respond?

YouTube spokeswoman Elena Hernandez explained that these behaviors are intentional because the platform doesn’t try to block all content related to a topic. She argued that Mozilla’s report does not take into account the actual operation of their system and therefore it is difficult for her to gather much information.

According to her, ” it is important to note that our controls do not filter out entire topics or views, as this could have negative effects for viewers “.


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