netflix-rating-system

The Netflix rating system has always been misconceived, and that’s about to change. Get this, you’re the star of the ratings and suggestions you see on the app! The more you rate and watch on Netflix, the more precise the Netflix rating system is.

Netflix tracks your on-app activity to understand your preferences and gives you tailor-made content to binge on. Your history on Netflix creates the green match percentage you see on all movies and shows!

What is the Netflix Rating system and how does it work? All you need to know about the ratings and what they’re based on. Here’s Netflix Explained.

How Does The Netflix Rating System Work, And Is It Personalized?

Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

The Netflix rating system essentially started with a star rating (1 to 5 stars). If you can’t remember these days, you’re too young.

However, the user rating has taken a new shape since 2017, changing to Thumbs Up and Thumbs Down, kinda like Tinder.

You have the choice to rate before or after viewing the content. This feature was added to check your interest or intent in watching the content showing in your library.

Does rating a movie or series matter on Netflix?

When rating a show as Thumbs Up or Thumbs Down, Netflix learns more about your interests and will give you custom content accordingly.

For example, if you gave “Stranger Things” a thumbs-up, Netflix will suggest similar shows. Furthermore, Netflix can show you more from Stranger Things’ own Millie Bobby Brown, so expect to see “Enola Holmes” in your suggestions list.

On the contrary, if you give a “Stranger Things” a Thumbs Down, the Netflix system will learn that this isn’t your jam and will stop showing it in your library. Don’t worry, they don’t take things too personally.

If you’re not up for disappointment and time-wasting content, rating shows will get you one step closer to absolutely fitting shows and movies.

Netflix’s Match Percentage

The Netflix rating system is also responsible for the 98% Match or 60% Match green labels you see beside each movie or series. (see below)

What does the Match percentage on Netflix stand for? In this section, I’ll be discussing the very misunderstood percentage that you see on the screen.

It’s not based on reviews

To clarify, this percentage is not based on movie critics or Netflix reviews. The percentage has nothing to do with how good the movie or series is. This percentage is Netflix’s own estimate on how fitting this show is to you.

It’s Your unique number

The same movie that can get a 90% match on your Netflix can get a 60% match on mine. Why is that? Because our viewing habits are unique. For example, if you watch horror shows, “The Haunting” might get a 97% match on your list. If your friend watches cooking reality shows, “The Haunting” will have a way lower match percentage.

Similar Netflixers

Not saying that you aren’t unique, but other Netflix users have similar viewing habits and interests as you do. With that said, Netflix has put you in the same pool with them and will use their interests to help set you up with the perfect match and detect a suitable match percentage for you. In return, you play a role in the percentage of others by just being you!

Encore: Fun Fact about Thumbnails

Did you know that Netflix shows you personalized thumbnails instead of a standard movie poster? 

Netflix also uses your viewing history and taste to show you thumbnails that are more appealing to you! In fact, each movie or show has different thumbnails that can change in real-time and update.

What does that mean?

You see a different thumbnail to a show than I do. You might also see different thumbnails of the same show as time goes by. Whoa! 

“Peaky Blinders” has always been suggested to me using actor Cillian Murphy’s face as a thumbnail. I’ve always seen it while browsing Netflix searching for shows, but never cared enough to start watching it.

Netflix sees an opportunity and takes it:

After binge-watching “The Queen’s Gambit” in a single day #SueMe, the ‘Peaky Blinders’ thumbnail, directly changed to actress Anya Taylor-Joy, the star of “The Queen’s Gambit”. That is to say, Netflix used the photo of the lead character from “The Queen’s Gambit” to promote “Peaky Blinders” that Anya has only appeared in one season of. Sneaky, but I like it.

I’m now on the verge of watching “Peaky Blinders”. They got me!

Here’s what Netflix wrote about their suggestions system: “The more you teach us about your unique tastes, the better job we can do suggesting your next great binge-worthy show or that perfect title for movie night”.

To sum up, the Netflix rating system works to give you the best experience based on the genres you watch, your ratings, your viewing history as well as other Netflix members with a similar taste.

Does Netflix get the ratings right for you? Let us know!

Nash Jurdy
Born a Cinephile. I write about Movies, Television, and music at Calibbr. I juggle design, digital marketing, and publicity for several major Hollywood studios.

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