Understanding Youtube’s Subscriber Algorithm

If you have read my articles you will know that I like and follow Eric Kim. I noticed that a latest Youtube video from Eric was not in my subscription feed, even though time wise it should have been. This is youtube’s new subscriber algorithm.

A “snap” of my Subs list on the day.

Within an hour of the one video, Eric had posted another… This second video was not in my feed even hours after. I considered this a bug, but it wasn’t.

Youtube’s cap on small channels

As I pointed out in my article “Understanding Youtube” from March, Youtube killed the advertising on all smaller channels. I said this was the beginning of the end, and it is from a revenue and costs perspective.

With small channels producing content and youtube having to serve the requests without any revenue, this generates costs… So any channel that a user does view with adverts is preferable from youtube’s perspective and bank balance.

Youtube’s New Subscriber Algorithm

Social Blade has posted an article about the new algorithm that Youtube is testing to “help the subscriber” see what YT thinks they want to see. Original article from Social Blade.

The declared aim of the algorithm is to “assist” in navigating the mass of content. I don’t think so. If it were, the control on the algorithm would be public and controlled by the user.

Any secret algorithm that modifies choices that a user makes, is trying to manipulate that choice. But if we consider the disastrous position that Youtube has put itself in, as per my original article, this algorithm makes sense.

Youtube needs viewers to watch channels with advertising. Having killed advertising on many channels, youtube needs us to watch those channels that still have advertising.

If youtube wants to get rid of any meaning to being a subscriber then they will create a new disconnect. People will simply jump to other systems that collect feed information such as Feedspot. Subsequently youtube will have even less influence on its viewers.

Youtube Viewers Are Not The Problem

If we subscribe and follow channels that youtube has decided not to earn revenue on, then YT is hit twice. Firstly viewer time is limited, we only have 24hours a day and sleep, work and other things take some of it. That leaves even less time to watch content with adverts. Secondly the more content that earns youtube nothing is just a cost on their bottom line. They choose it through!

If you don’t understand your business, make bad decisions and can’t admit or reverse them; the only option left is to get the customers to change, with force if necessary.

Way to go Youtube!