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Netflix Set to Shut Down User Reviews This Summer

Netflix no longer wants to share your opinions about TV shows or movies with the rest of the streaming community.

The streaming giant is reportedly set to phase out user-submitted reviews over the next two months. As first reported by CNET, Netflix will stop accepting user reviews as of July 30. Then, by mid-August, it will delete all reviews customers have submitted.

According to Netflix, over time it has seen a drop in usage of user reviews — which are available only on its website via computers. But some titles have garnered a strong outpouring of feedback: the popular original series Stranger Things, for example, currently has 3,897 reviews on the Netflix site.

Ultimately, Netflix’s decision to eliminate user reviews likely comes down to one factor: They probably did not, on balance, lead to people streaming more content from the service.

The reviews feature on Netflix have allowed viewers to rate a TV show or movie using a five-star scale. The reviews must be at least 80 characters, with a max of 1,999 characters.

Netflix’s shutdown of user reviews comes a little more than a year after it removed the longstanding five-star rating systems for content recommendations. Now, users rate titles using thumbs-up or thumbs-down, and Netflix displays a personalized percentage “match score” for titles based on its calculation of what kind of TV shows and movies you’ll enjoy.

According to Netflix, thumbs-based ratings deliver more accurate recommendations and is easier for people to understand than the five-star scale. The company said that in testing, it saw a 200% increase in ratings by users with the thumbs-up/thumbs-down system.

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