Ever watch something on Netflix that you’ve instantly regretted? Worst still, you’re now getting recommended videos based on a movie you simply hated?
Luckily there are a few things you can do to fix that.
The problem is that Netflix has a TON of content to view. The platform is always changing as new shows get added and old ones removed. On the Stream Team Show, we try to help by curating content and giving reviews on the things we watch so it’s easier to find something you’ll likely enjoy.
Even the Stream Team runs into some flops (check out episode 15 for example). A price we’re happy to pay if it means saving you some time.
There’s also human errors like clicking things that you didn’t expect, or forgetting that you’re in the wrong profile before watching a movie.
Sure, we wish there was better functionality around profile management on Netflix but that’s a topic for another day.
How Netflix Recommendations Work
Understanding the invisible array of algorithms that power our Netflix’ suggestions has sparked a lot of speculation. Subscribers are left to wonder what’s actually going on in that galaxy of big data that’s powered by billions and billions of user ratings.
Turns out there are over 800 Netflix engineers working behind the scenes at their Silicon Valley HQ. – Wired Magazine 2013
Netflix tracks what you play, search for, or rate, as well as the time, date, and device you are watching from. They even track your interactions such as browsing or scrolling behavior.
All that data is fed into several algorithms, each optimized for a different purpose. In a broader sense, most of the algorithms are based on the assumption that similar viewing patterns represent similar user tastes.
The algorithms rely heavily on titles you decide to play, so yes, this means the full play through of that movie you barely stomached holds some weight.
Nearly every action Netflix takes is a recommendation. The ‘Search’ option doesn’t normally come into play until you’ve scrolled through countless titles that didn’t grab your interest. So, anything you do to help tailor Netflix recommendations will have a big impact.
How to fix your Netflix recommendation list
Option 1: Delete things from your Netflix view history
Here are the steps to delete shows from your Netflix view history:
1 – Sign into Netflix (easiest in a web browser).
2 – Select your profile.
3 – Got to ‘my account’ page.
4 – Click view activity.
5 -You can then click the ‘X’ next to any show you want to remove.
Now, your significant other won’t know about your My Little Pony obsession.
Stream Team Tip: Child accounts don’t have the ‘delete’ feature, so you can still find out what your kid has been up to on Netflix.
Option 2: Rate what you loved and what you hated
If you’re like most, you won’t bother to continue watching something on Netflix if you’re not feelin’ it. Why waste the time on content you’re not enjoying?
While we don’t expect you to spend your valuable time watching something you don’t like, it’s worth the extra 20 seconds to give the film / series the stars you think it deserves. This is a key way to influence your recommendation queue.
It’s good to rate things that you love, but it’s even more important to rate things that you hate.
Netflix will use your ratings to tailor the types of movies shown to you first, which will also affect the ‘channel’ list that is displayed under your profile.
This means you should be honest with yourself and avoid giving something a high rating just because it’s expected to be good. That’s aspirational rating.
At the same time, you should steer clear of rating something poorly just because it doesn’t have critical acclaim. Be honest, we won’t judge you.
Stream Team Tip: You can also easily update a rating on your Netflix profile from the “View Activity” page.
Navigating the Netflix stream can be difficult
Netflix has one of the biggest libraries of content available to stream on-demand, which makes it challenging to find something worth watching. Luckily, we’re here to help.
Don’t forget to checkout our previous episodes of the podcast for more suggestions on what to stream.
Have you watched a show recently that you’ve instantly regretted? Let us know in the comments below.
Remember until next time… stream on!