Beyond the blatant racism and sexism that fills YouTube comment feeds, there is something equally nefarious. Pages of stupidity steeped in poor grammar and spelling that is so often not relevant to the video in the first place. Rather, it resembles a place under a bridge where trolls live, and where wit and intelligent prose go to die. Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) has grown weary of this of late and has decided to mix things up a bit for uploaders of video content.
Google to monitor comments relevancy
Yesterday saw a limited number of uploaders given more control to manage comments on their videos. No longer will the most recent comment grace the comment feed but, rather, Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) has determined that relevancy will now take precedence over recency. Google, who will roll this out to all users over the coming months, has introduced new moderation tools.
According to Nundu Janakiram, product manager at YouTube, the new commenting system was developed jointly between YouTube and Google+ teams.
“Currently, you see comments from the last random person to stop by,” Janakiram said. “The new system tries to surface the most meaningful conversation to you. We’re trying to shift from comments to meaningful conversations,” he said.
Youtube comments evaluation
Community engagement by the commenter, the commenter’s reputation, and up-votes for a comment will now determine where the comment comes in. Users who have been flagged for either spam or abuse will now find their comments buried and those with strong Google+ ratings, like celebrities, will be given additional weight to their comments.
Just because it’s powered by Google+ doesn’t mean that you’ll lose your YouTube identity, though. “You are still allowed to use pseudonyms,” said Janakiram, whether you’re “a Syrian dissident or SoulPancake“.
New conversation style on Youtube
In addition to the aforementioned changes, YouTube, in an effort to build conversations, will allow comments to be displayed either publicly or privately to people in your Circles and will be threaded similar to Gmail.
YouTube hopes that new moderation tools will make it easier for video owners to guide the conversation, Janakiram explained. “There have been challenges in the past with certain comments and what’s been shown there.”
Don’t expect the sophomoric drivel to completely dry up on YouTube, just expect it to be more hidden as more and more uploaders are given the tools to drive the conversation away from the lowest common denominator.