by WebVideoCrew on May 9, 2013


Our world is filled with so many mysteries, such as unexplainable sculptures, doubtful ancient civilizations and artifacts as well as debatable scientific discoveries and theories. Quite similarly, the Internet is riddled with many mysteries, perhaps one of the most popular ones being YouTube’s 301 views.

YouTube 301 Views Explained

It doesn’t matter if you have a small YouTube channel or a highly popular one. Once one of your videos gets an influx of views in a short amount of time, there’s a high chance that the video’s counter will freeze at 301 views. Why exactly does this happen?

Brady Haran, the brain behind Numberphile, got to the bottom of it and sought Ted Hamilton, YouTube’s product manager for analytics, to obtain a sensible explanation to this phenomenon last year. According to Hamilton, the basic reason why the view counter freezes at 301 views is because YouTube is trying to verify where all the sudden views came from—it’s trying to figure out if the views are real or not.

That might sound silly, but it’s basically a way for YouTube to maintain its integrity. After all, with so many companies offering services to make videos viral in the shortest possible time, the authorities have to implement some steel-fist rules to prohibit users and videos from going berserk all at once.

If you think the above explanation is still quite perplexing, here’s an easier way to understand the process:

  1. You upload a video.
  2. YouTube counts all views, regardless of where it came from or how long the video was watched.
  3. Once your views get over the 300 mark, YouTube starts verifying the views’ authenticity.
  4. During the verification process, the view count is delayed and, consequently, frozen at 301 views.
  5. After the views are verified by YouTube, the counter displays the real view count.

YouTube’s Answer to Frozen View Counters

301+ Views

The thing is, not everyone knows the reason behind YouTube 301 views—even the WebVideoCrew team remains baffled by YouTube’s algorithm and verification rules. With so many people arguing back and forth about the view counter and the discrepancy between it and the likes, dislikes, and comments, YouTube just has to do something.

Now the important question comes: what did YouTube do?

Well, it changed 301 views to 301+ views. We know. That solution, if we can even call it that, is just as silly as the original, but what can we do? At least now, people know that the views are actually more than 301 and that YouTube’s trying to do something about it. Although, we have to say, YouTube probably needs to get a new development team to make something better than this.

What do you think? Is the fix for YouTube 301 views a good one or not? Share your thoughts with us on the comment section below!

Primary photo credit: Walyou

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Tags: YouTube Marketing