Want YouTube without recommendations? Now, that's an option


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If you’ve ever wished you could just use YouTube without the platform imposing its recommendations on you, that wish is about to be granted. Or maybe it already has.

YouTube announced that, as of August 8, the platform is changing how users see recommendations.

As you may know, the algorithm uses what you’ve watched to help determine what to recommend. With the new change, “if you have YouTube watch history off and have no significant prior watch history, features that require watch history to provide video recommendations will be disabled – like your YouTube home feed.”

That means that your home feed may look a lot different, the YouTube announcement continued. That’s because, without the recommendations, your homepage will have a minimalist appearance where the screen is mostly blank. You’ll be able to see the search bar and the left-hand guide menu.

YouTube said this change allows users to more easily search, browse subscribed channels, and explore Topic tabs instead of being bogged down with recommendations.

YouTube said it’s making this change to show users which features rely on watch history and also to make it more streamlined for those of you who prefer to search for content rather than have content suggested to them.

It appears that the change may not be available to everyone all at once. “We’re rolling these changes out slowly, over the next few months,” the company said.

When it’s available to you, if you want to turn off your YouTube recommendations, remember, your history must be turned off, and you can do that by visiting visit My Google Activity at myactivity.google.com/activitycontrols. You may also need to clear your history.

If you try the recommendation-free YouTube experience and find that you don’t like it or you want to switch back for some reason, you can change your history settings any time.


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