In a move that’s sure to horrify crabby armchair critics, Netflix is swapping its one-to-five star ranking system for a simplified thumbs up-thumbs down rating, Variety reports. Subscribers’ profiles will still include prior ratings for movies they’ve watched, but aside from that, stars will completely vanish from the streaming service’s interface.
Netflix executive Todd Yellin revealed the new ratings method at a press briefing on Thursday. He explained that the company tested the thumbs up-thumbs down system on members in 2016, and found that thumbs (a simple "up" or "down" option) got 200 percent more ratings than stars (with five options) did, Entertainment Weekly reports. In other words, this type of system will yield more feedback from subscribers.
The streamlined ranking system will also help gauge what people are actually watching, Yellin noted. According to him, Netflix users often ranked acclaimed documentaries with five stars, and lower-brow movies with one star. But when it came down to their actual viewing selections, they were far more inclined to watch frivolous films.
"We made ratings less important because the implicit signal of your behavior is more important," Yellin said, according to Variety.
Since they're doing away with stars, Netflix will also change their percent-match feature: Instead of providing viewers with a match score based on reviews, they’ll change it so it’s based on compatibility. Shows or movies that closely match a user’s taste will get a higher percentage; ones that are less than a 50 percent match won’t show up.
Netflix's new ranking system will be rolled out in the coming weeks, executives say.
[h/t Entertainment Weekly]