Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views)

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Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) easymoney1972 12/14/09 9:21 AM
If anyone doubts Youtube would fraud it's users and sponsors I would ask them to consider the following. Last night while browsing videos I came across a certain T-Pain video 3 weeks old with 38 million views, and 9 comments two of which were asking how a video 3 weeks old had 38 million views. The record label that handles T-Pain has yet to get that many views in three years. How does this happen? To find out do the following experiment. Go to the most popular page, set up screen capture and auto-refresh. What you will see is some videos having millions of views the instant they're uploaded.
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) JDoors 12/14/09 10:56 AM
"... you will see ... some videos having millions of views the instant they're uploaded."
 
Interesting. Good thing I don't care about views or I'd be pissed.
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) epontius 12/14/09 1:57 PM
Where is this video?
I don't know if you noticed, but YouTube went through some lengths and a lot of bad feedback because they changed their counting system to prevent fraud and gaming of the views counter.
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) epontius 12/14/09 3:07 PM
@IndoorSeesaw
Good point...
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) easymoney1972 12/14/09 7:09 PM
Just do the experiment.
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) epontius 12/14/09 8:05 PM
What's the experiment?
If I go here:
http://www.youtube.com/videos?s=pop
and refresh the page a few times...I see the same videos...the top video was uploaded 3 days ago and has around 640k views.

Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) ebbixx 12/14/09 9:21 PM
Is this the one?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kWBE0sQC5L8 

Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) easymoney1972 12/15/09 12:11 AM
I'm sorry I should have said "most recent" videos. If you set up a screen capture and macro to refresh the page for a couple hours you will see views added in chunks of thousands. Visit this link, do the math and see if this adds up. http://www.youtube.com/user/Hyldig87 One of the 2 videos on this channel did 416 thousand views in a day. Or more accurately 10 minutes.
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) easymoney1972 12/15/09 1:13 AM
BTW Go to any and all Fred videos, for all the positive comments click on the channel from whence it came. You will find 2/3 of them share a common trait: 0 uploads and 2 or 3 favorited videos most sponsored with more than 500 thousand views. Then go to Fred's channel and click on his friends. You will find at any given time half of those accounts are either inactive or closed altogether. You will notice too that most positive comments are vague in that they don't make a specific reference to the video. These comments can-and I suspect-are added to any number of videos. I myself can design a simple macro to browse and comment on ONLY sponsored videos with a generic comment. The comments of course coming from my own channel. With 4 Youtube accounts I could open 4 instances of my browser and run 4 macros simultaniously on my own out-dated hardware. Imagine what Youtube can/does with 200 bogus Gmail accounts.
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) easymoney1972 12/15/09 1:28 AM
@IndoorSeeSaw  so, VEVO transferred his views but not his comments?
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) JDoors 12/15/09 7:45 AM
"... If you set up a screen capture and macro to refresh the page for a couple hours you will see views added in chunks of thousands. Visit this link, do the math and see if this adds up. http://www.youtube.com/user/Hyldig87 One of the 2 videos on this channel did 416 thousand views in a day. Or more accurately 10 minutes."
 
I dont' see that as suspect. So the counter isn't real-time, it adds views in large chunks. That wouldn't and shouldn't be surprising in the least (read other posts about the view counter and how it is not accurate at any single point in time). So the counter waited and added an enormous chunk all at once, again, not surprising. That a popular channel gets half-a-million views in one day is not surprising, and that the counter got so far behind all those views were added at once, is also not surprising.
 
I'm not sayin' nobody's gaming the system, but I do think you're over-thinking this.      ;)
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) ebbixx 12/15/09 7:52 AM
On the other hand, claques have been around since the time of Nero.  The only difference now being that you don't necessarily need to hire individuals to be the claqueurs.
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) JDoors 12/15/09 10:11 AM
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) easymoney1972 12/15/09 11:39 AM
@JDoors Okay, so what we have here is a channel with 2 uploads and 20 subscribers generated 396 thousand enique views? In 24 hours?
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) JDoors 12/15/09 11:48 AM
Don't forget that whatever the view counts are, YouTube stops them at some point to allow whatever they determine to be valid views to catch up to the automated count. Even if you game the system, it checks your views and stalls them until they catch up to reality.
 
Lots of users post here complaining that their view counts were stalled in such a manner.
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) faberoptime 12/15/09 12:35 PM
@ebbixx - a shrewd point (and as an etymologist, thanks for the term!).
I think you put your finger on the crux of it - there's an obvious distinction between folk behaving in that way and non-human accounts doing the same.
Surely the latter isn't legitimate (against ToS/Guidelines)?
Whilst most popular publishers such as Fred doubtless do have a substantial body of legitimate subscribers, if there's non-human claqueurs in and amongst, that's something fair to object to.
 
@easymoney1972 - yep, the headline stats you stated do seem anomalous.
Can you provide a link to the vid you're referring to so we can take a look?
 
@JDoors - I well recognise the thrust of your argument! But perhaps of peripheral import to this discussion? 396k views clearly exceeds the known threshold by orders of magnitude.
If anything, the example easymoney1972 alluded to (subject to examination!) could be evidence that the new view counting systems remain prone to some manipulation.
If so, a worthwhile endeavour to try to clarify and nail it down so that YT can consider.
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) easymoney1972 12/15/09 12:37 PM
@JDoors Precisely, the counter results are purely analytical. Ultimately the final results are at the webmaster's discretion. So, in instances where the views are quite obviously fake Youtube makes the final decision.  Some would be entirely trusting of Youtubes ethics, others would point out apparent trends of views flooding on certain channels and others being meticulously scrutinised. As in my Fred example it would appear from his channel that a certain number of mysterious Youtubers open accounts only to view, rate, favorite, and comment on exclusively Fred videos. For such activity not to register as at least questionable, one would have to be either niave, or a Google employee.
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) epontius 12/15/09 1:24 PM
I think you could be playing the IF and conspiracy game for a long time.
Fred has over 1 million subscribers. If only 10% of those subscribers view his video...he still has 100k views...not very hard to get hundreds of thousands of views within a short period of time. No one knows the inner workings of the counting system...
You could also make the case that some unscrupulous scammer/spammer sets up some sort of automated system to create bogus accounts, subscribe and make comments on Fred's videos...not because they are in cahoots with a Fred/YouTube conspiracy, but because Fred is popular, his videos (and comments) are seen by hundreds of thousands of people...what better way to advertise and/or try to prove your legitimacy?
I manage several corporate accounts...some videos get tens of thousands of views...they always get targeted by spammers using obviously automated off topic comments.
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) easymoney1972 12/15/09 2:01 PM
@faberoptime http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lt2wjJlP2N4
And to show some consistancy this one has 71 million views, 105 ratings, 85 comments.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eNII9PDlFJ0
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) easymoney1972 12/15/09 2:58 PM
@epontius "You could also make the case that some unscrupulous scammer/spammer sets up some sort of automated system to create bogus accounts, subscribe and make comments on Fred's videos...not because they are in cahoots with a Fred/YouTube conspiracy, but because Fred is popular"
       Very true, and one would assume these spammers would employ the same technique on any number of channels. Therefore the same ghost accounts and generic comments would appear on any number of mega-popular channels. So distinguishing regular spam from something a little more covert wouldn't be difficult at all.
       Again, what I found alarming was the number of "friends" with 0 uploads, 2-3 favorites, and basically the same comments who deal exclusively with Fred. If this was typical spam I would expect to see Shane Dawson, NigaHiga, and Chris Crocker as well. Why would anyone spam a single channel? With 0 uploads you have nothing to promote. In this case the only person who stands to gain anything is Fred Figglehorn.
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) easymoney1972 12/18/09 12:00 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BLEAYS6MneE
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) faberoptime 1/12/10 2:15 PM

Let's get this fixed!

As per here:
http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/youtube/PKJx/~3/nXFazRp6LL0/spring-cleaning-comes-early-to-youtube.html

You may like to express your view about what should be done about this ongoing problem.

Based upon (too much!) legwork and research, I've put up four suggestions (intended to look forward, not back) to improve things (vote for whichever you prefer), but do feel free to suggest better if you have them!

Note that I've numbered them #1 through #4, in decreasing order of personal preference (taking into account the nature of the majority of expressed user concerns; the practical implications; the degree of impact to statistics and the community and the nett benefits availed as a whole). I should also say that YT has to date seemed deaf to option #3 and option #4 equates to no change at all from how it is now.

Positive votes for progressive change encouraged and appreciated.

Go here to vote/suggest:
http://productideas.appspot.com/#9/e=3d60a&t=fix+view+count

Do shout back if you want to discuss anything about the options that I suggested.

Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) BlinkxbBlues 1/13/10 5:21 AM
"... you will see ... some videos having millions of views the instant they're uploaded."
 
Good point. I'm pretty sure that channels like Britain's Got Talent and X-Factor UK don't get 1 half a million views in 3 minutes. I bet they put they're videos in private then they make it public the following day do make it look like it got it by itself.
 
I'm sure that Simon Cowell pays YouTube put the views on high profile.
 
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) crisdeli 4/23/10 1:31 PM
Hi everyone,

There's nothing wrong with the way YouTube counts the views. When the official releases of the videos were transferred from YouTube to Vevo they passed the counters along so that they wouldn't reset all videos. The stupid thing is that they didn't pass the comments as well so everything written before Vevo in those videos was lost... Stupid compatibility issues... And a video view countst only if you've seen the video until the end, so by just refreshing the page you're probably seeing other people's views, not your own's.
Re: Does Youtube think we're stupid? (fake views) megabug7 4/23/10 1:52 PM
This video contains content from Vevo, who has blocked it in your country on copyright grounds
 
:(
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