In a move that will make both viewers and creators happy, YouTube has announced plans to remove the “301+” view placeholder and replace it with a more exact count.
The world’s most popular video streaming service dropped a short and sweet tweet to let everyone know about the change:
We're saying goodbye to 301+ and hello to more up-to-date video views. pic.twitter.com/33OQuOvxcs
— YouTube Creators (@YTCreators) August 5, 2015
In the past, YouTube would pause the view counter at 301 for up to 24 hours while its servers subject the video, and its views, to a statistical process that checks whether those views are coming from real people or from bots.
‘Botting‘ was a big problem in the early days of YouTube, where unethical creators would pay services to make their videos look more popular than they actually are.
Earlier this year, Google rolled out their NoCaptcha ReCaptcha service, which allows them to verify whether a user is a real person or a robot with just a single click. Now, with this move, YouTube and Google are showing just how confident they are in their ability to distinguish human views versus those coming from an automated system.
For a company like YouTube, having accurate view counts is essential to attracting and retaining advertisers; who demand exact data. Creators will also be happy that they don’t have to wait to see just how many views their new video is pulling in.
As for the viewers, it probably doesn’t mean much to them. But I’m sure they’ll appreciate never having to see the annoying “why are there only 301 views and x number of likes” comments ever again.