Netflix Realizes One Thumb Simply Isn't Enough

The streaming giant is using the new rating system to help you figure out what to watch... and gather more data on you.

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A photo of an Android device with Netflix on as the main event, with a remote off to the side with a Netflix shortcut on it
Netflix’s new rating system harkens back to when we relied on critics to find something to watch.
Photo: Florence Ion / Gizmodo

Netflix has officially debuted its Double Thumbs Up ranking system, making it easier to tell Netflix whether a piece of content gets your ultimate seal of approval.

Now when you’re perusing through Netflix’s content library, you can tap on the option to rate a title and then select whether you “like it,” “love this,” or whether it is “not for me,” with each category respectively identified with a thumbs down, thumbs up, or double thumbs up.

The streaming giant uses the singular thumbs up and thumbs down to determine whether it should serve you related content. But that double thumbs-up indicates that Netflix always surfaces content of that kind, with similar actors and producers.

A screenshot showing the Double Thumbs feature
The Double Thumbs feature is how to review content you love.
Screenshot: Florence Ion / Gizmodo

I made sure to go through and give two thumbs up to all Thomas the Tank Engine content for my kid’s Netflix profile. I also made sure to thumbs down Coco Melon. I’m still tracking down the person who introduced the show to my kid so that they can pay for their crimes.


The streaming service retired its five-star rating system years ago to streamline the rating process. Netflix’s director of product innovation and personalization experiences, Christine Doig-Cardet, told The Verge that the new two thumbs up option should help you better navigate its library of original content.

Life these days feels like it’s all about getting the algorithm tuned to your personal preferences, particularly streaming content. But sometimes, it’s a little overwhelming allowing the computer to make your choices for you, especially on a service like Netflix, which has eschewed many major network TV shows and blockbuster movies to showcase its homegrown content.


Back in the day, when I was a baby millennial, many people chose movies to watch based on whether film critics Roger Ebert or Gene Siskel gave it theirthumbs up” or whether they became a cinephilic Voltron with the “two thumbs up” rating. Whenever they both liked a movie, they’d use the trademarked phrase to indicate whether something was worth going out to watch. However, they usually followed up the review with a star rating and written analysis in their work for newspapers and books. The system of thumbs up or thumbs down doesn’t leave a ton of room for nuance. Adding more rating options means Netflix has moar data for pushing content your way and deciding what to greenlight in the future. That should be incredibly obvious but Netflix is the one who killed the 5-star system in the first place.

If you want to use the new rating feature, update your Netflix app on your TV, Android, and iOS device. The Double Thumbs Up ability is also available on the app’s web version.