By far the most irritating thing I see on YouTube is when people dislike a video without leaving a comment on why. Most of my videos have a pretty nice like:dislike ratio, all above 0.95. But some videos got 10k views, and 5% dislikes. Now that would be 500 people. But guess what I don’t see? 500 comments on what I did so terribly wrong. Of course not. Because people are cowards. So please, consider to act differently. Not just on my channel. But on the whole internet. Consider being a normal human, even online. No, especially online!
Dislikes do not hurt content creators, they actually help them out quite a bit
I am not »hurt« by dislikes. In fact, they help my videos be pushed. Every interaction is good in the end, and the YouTube algorithm seems to like controversy. In fact, if you really want to »hurt« a creator, the best you can do is not to watch a lot of their video and not dislike it, and then leave their channel as fast as you can. If the creator gets suggested to you, click on »Don’t recommend channel«. That will kick’em out of your feed forever and flag them to YouTube.
However, I am always puzzled by this behavior. That itchy trigger finger-mentality. I mean, what are you—five years old? I can’t even remember one video I ever disliked. As explained above, that does not even downvote the video in any way. It might even help that bad bad creator you don’t like. So it’s pretty stupid to dislike videos you dislike actually. Ever thought about that? What I usually do is click off as fast as I can, and just get the channel out of my video suggestions whenever I see it. Because if I don’t want to see it, I don’t want to interact with it.
I almost never dislike videos on YouTube
Something must be really really outrageous to make me go out of my way to actually hit the dislike button. It is a rather ridiculous thing to me. Especially when I look at the little data I have from people who actually told me why they disliked a video (which is probably less than 10%).
One time, I made an English video on my German channel and told people to let me know whether or not they liked the idea of a bilingual channel… And, oh boy, did they let me know how much they didn’t like the idea. Okay, cool, I get it. But this is so immature, in a way. You could’ve just said it.
I don’t know. I think it’s just mean and childish, like storming out of a room without saying a word and just yelling at the person. Like how is this going to help?
Why you should behave like a normal person online
I mean, if a creator said or did something you really disagree with, it would make way more sense that you actually let them know what it was. How are they supposed to know?
In one case, I can only guess. I made a video about me not having a bed. I don’t have a bed. As in bed frame or box-spring bed. Or any kind of »normal« bed. I have a mattress on the floor. And my whole family is constantly giving me that »You need a bed, kid« talk. So I made this video about it:
I would consider it to be mild click-bait. Yeah, it’s not like I sleep on my floor or in a hammock. But it’s debatable how bad that really is. After all, I kind of expect the viewer to think for themselves, and I find it a fair question to ask: How stupid do you actually have to be to not read the title (which includes »minimal bed setup«) and then be super disappointed over that video. Like how? Second grade reading skills, anyone?
However, this is one of my most-clicked videos but also one with the most dislikes. And almost nobody let me know much about their outrage. I can only guess that it is because I had the audacity to put up this thumbnail (and then resolve the mystery like in the first 10 seconds, but okay, you go, because what…? Because you are disappointed that you didn’t have the brains to anticipate that I must sleep on something? Oh dear…).
This makes me think: What would these people actually say or do in real-life? Would they storm out of the room and just shout something unintelligible at me? I would love to know, really! Because I would not act like this on YouTube or outside of YouTube. Whenever I disagree with something, I actually have the balls to tell that creator to their face. So should you.
If you have a problem with something as ridiculous as a thumbnail that cost you 10 seconds of your life, then be the adult you claim to be and let me know.
I think that so many people don’t actually share their precious little opinions, because they are afraid of backlash, or simply an honest answer. For me though, it is a great practice in being non-judgemental and less defensive. And I actually value critical coments. They help me learn more about what people misunderstand and what I need to explain better.
But the commenters can also learn from it. Because you need to understand one thing: You only ever see a very small part of a person online. One video does not represent a whole person, their life, their mindset, their experiences. It is just a few minutes and you can never know a person from that. Never. Get it into your heads, please.
Instead, it makes more sense to practice some nice »Ask, don’t assume!« and actually find out what was meant by what the creator said in the video. What did they mean? Did they really want to express it that way? Was it meant to be harsh or judgemental? Start a real conversation—we need more of them!