Sick of Irrelevant YouTube Recommendations? Here’s What You Need to Do

Gavin Phillips Updated 09-12-2019

YouTube isn’t completely evil. Yes, there are some undesirable features, such as anonymous YouTube trolls. Then there’s the whole thing with Google sticking its hands into your privacy through tracking. It isn’t all bad.

Just compare the modern-day YouTube interface with the interface from 2005 if you don’t believe me. Many features, though annoying, are good-intentioned, and the YouTube Recommendations feature is one of them.

The problem is that YouTube’s Recommendations become confused over time, and begin showing you irrelevant or useless content. Tired of terrible YouTube Recommendations? Here’s how you fix them, for good!

How to Reset YouTube Recommendations

Nobody knows what exactly goes into the YouTube algorithm for suggesting recommendations. Well, nobody other than the YouTube engineers, of course.

However, it’s safe to say that two things have a very strong impact on what YouTube ends up recommending: search history and watch history. If you reset both, you can pretty much reset your recommendations back to a blank slate.

youtube recommentations data controls

How to Delete Your YouTube Search History

The first thing to do is clear the YouTube search history. Without a search history, the YouTube Recommendation algorithm doesn’t know what you usually watch. Plus, deleting your YouTube search log also erases all of those “guilty pleasure” video searches you never wanted to see the light of day.

To delete your YouTube Search History:

  1. Select your username from the top bar
  2. In the menu that appears, click Your Data In YouTube
  3. Scroll down and select Manage your YouTube Search History
  4. Set the Delete by Date to All Time using the dropdown box
  5. Click Delete

If you want to turn the YouTube Search History option off permanently, first head back to the Your Data In YouTube hub.

Scroll down to YouTube Search History. Underneath the section header is a small toggle with an arrow. Hit the arrow, then switch the YouTube Search History toggle on the next page. Once switched off, YouTube will no longer retain your video searches.

youtube recommentations delete by date

How to Delete Your YouTube Watch History

The second thing you need to do is clear your YouTube Watch History. The YouTube Watch History is the log of every video you’ve seen. Your history doesn’t have a date range cap, either. I just checked my watch history, and it goes all the way back to 2010, containing tens of thousands of videos.

Deleting your YouTube Watch History will help YouTube lose track of your watching habits, a key aspect of resetting the YouTube Recommendation algorithm.

To delete your YouTube Watch History:

  1. Select your username from the top bar
  2. In the menu that appears, click Your Data In YouTube
  3. Scroll down and select Manage your YouTube Watch History
  4. Set the Delete by Date to All Time using the dropdown box
  5. Click Delete

If you want to turn the YouTube Watch History option off permanently, first head back to the Your Data In YouTube hub.

Scroll down to YouTube Watch History. Underneath the section header is a small toggle with an arrow. Hit the arrow, then switch the YouTube Watch History toggle on the next page. Once switched off, YouTube will no longer retain your video searches.

Please note that after deleting your YouTube Search and Watch Histories, you might need to wait a while for the YouTube Recommendations to reset. Sometimes, the recommendations won’t reset, even after you clear everything.

Unfortunately, there are other external factors taken into consideration when formulating YouTube Recommendations. If this happens to your account, there is little else you can do. Google wants you to keep clicking through videos. Even if you turn off recommendations specific to your viewing habits, it will still display the global YouTube recommendations.

How to Remove YouTube Recommendations

Resetting your YouTube Recommendations is one option. But removing YouTube Recommendations entirely is another way to solve the problem. The nuclear option is best if you never want to use YouTube recommended videos—and never want to be bothered by them again.

The quickest and safest way to remove YouTube Recommendations is via a browser extension. YouTube Recommendation blocking browser extensions are available for Chrome, Firefox, Opera, and other popular browsers.

1. Remove YouTube Recommended Videos

Remove YouTube Recommended Videos is available for Google Chrome. Once installed, the extension removes the YouTube recommendations sidebar, up next video, user comments, and video suggestions wall.

The Remove YouTube Recommended Videos extensions turns YouTube into a distraction free video player.

Download: Remove YouTube Recommended Videos for Chrome (Free)

Remove YouTube Recommended Videos will work with most Chromium-based browsers that support extensions.

2. Remove YouTube’s Suggestions

Remove YouTube’s Suggestions is an open-source extension that hides the YouTube suggested videos and recommendations sidebar. You can use the extension options to select which elements you want to remove, and which to keep (if any).

There is also the option to remove the YouTube Comments section, too.

Download: Remove YouTube’s Suggestions for Firefox (Free)

3. ImprovedTube

ImprovedTube for Opera is a slightly different take on removing YouTube Recommendations. Instead of hiding everything, the ImprovedTube helps you hide specific elements of the YouTube page.

For instance, you can hide the header, footer, related videos, comments, and more. In this, you can pick and choose the YouTube features you want.

Download: ImprovedTube for Opera

4. Options

Your penultimate YouTube Recommendation blocking tool is Options. Formerly known as YouTube Options, Options is a premium browser extension for Chrome, Firefox, Opera, and Safari. It blocks a huge range of YouTube elements and features, offering you fine-grain control over the content YouTube shows you.

If you want to block YouTube’s recommended videos and then some, Options is worth a look.

Download: Options for Chrome | Firefox | Opera | Safari (All $1.99 p/m subscription)

5. Quietube

The YouTube Recommendations blocking list terminates with Quietube. Unlike the other options, Quietube is a bookmarklet. You head to the Quietube site, drag the bookmarklet to your browser toolbar, and click it before you watch a YouTube video.

Quietube also works with Viddler and Vimeo, with more to options to come.

Train YouTube to Show Better Recommendations

You don’t have to go nuclear and remove everything from YouTube. There are integrated options to help you bend YouTube’s never-ending stream of recommended videos to your will.

The three-dot icon alongside the video title hides the Not Interested option. Click this button, inform YouTube as to why you are not interested in the suggestion, and it won’t appear again.

Better still, Google announced a change to how viewers control YouTube content.

  • Explore Topics on the Homepage and Up Next: YouTube is making it easier to explore topics and related videos. You’ll see these topics both at the top of your homepage (when you scroll up) and on the Up Next section below the video you’re currently watching.
  • Stop Certain Channels Being Recommended: On the flip side, you can now tell YouTube to stop recommending videos from particular channels. Just tap the three-dot menu next to a video and select “Don’t recommend channel” from the dropdown menu.
  • Discover Why YouTube Is Recommending Videos: YouTube is also explaining why it’s recommending particular content. When YouTube recommends videos based on what other viewers have watched, you’ll see an information box underneath the video.

These changes are currently rolling out across YouTube, so check your account to see if you have the new additional controls. In the meantime, you should also know how to delete a YouTube video How to Delete or Restore a YouTube Video Wondering how to delete YouTube videos? We show you how to remove YouTube videos from your channel and much more. Read More from your own channel.

Related topics: Online Video, Troubleshooting, YouTube.

Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the site alive. Read more.

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  1. George
    May 7, 2020 at 10:42 pm

    Nothing works. I keep getting tons of recommendations no matter what i disable or not. Its completely stupid. My recommendation to everyone will be to just stop using the homepage of youtube, period. Just only use youtube when you really need to search something, not just because you are bored... if you know what i mean.

  2. Jared Barlow
    March 29, 2020 at 1:37 pm

    !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!DO NOT DO ANYTHING LISTED ABOVE!!!!!!!!!

    This has made my youtube experience 10x worse!!!!! DO NOT LISTEN TO THIS ARTICLE

  3. GG
    February 12, 2020 at 5:40 am

    "Not Interested" option doesn't work since 2019 anymore.
    Youtube doesn't care if you're interested or not, it will reappear in just about few minutes.

  4. Jose Ole
    January 22, 2020 at 2:20 am

    I use blocktube (chrome addon) and just block any channel that they keep pushing I don't care about. I don't want to sign in or sign up for youtube, and this option allows me to prevent certain videos/channels from being recommended (finally got rid of that stupid lofi hiphop to study by video that never left regardless of what video I watched). The only downside is that this addon doesn't block the "youtube movies" channel. You can try to, but it just pops up anyway and the option to block it is not longer in the popup. All in all pretty useful, but not perfect. Youtube floods the sidebar with it's movies sometimes, but at least now I've gotten rid of mainstream tv networks, drama channels, and any other crap that has no place on youtube.

  5. Birdie Plays
    December 7, 2019 at 11:49 pm

    None of this shit helps. I'm on Android app and could care less for the faggotry YouTube and Google suggests. They should take a hint and only suggest things related TO WHO WE ARE SUBSCRIBED TO! Instead of all this Indian crap and non-speaking English bullshit. Stop invading our privacy with your crap and figure it out we want to watch what we are interested in. Not what YouTube wants us to watch.

    • GG
      February 12, 2020 at 5:44 am

      Search and watch history shouldn't be omitted though, but recommending the same shit that you already watched is beyond sanity.

      What they really should stop doing is recommending only very popular content.
      This way 99.9% of great content remains invisible while users got frustrated by being recommended the same shit over and over.

  6. jaz
    September 28, 2019 at 3:57 pm

    It really helped me... thank you so much!!!! you made my day!!! thanks a bunch, man... I can never be grateful more... I feel blessed... thank you so much ad esp that remove the YT recommendation Extention for chrome... it really helps to focus only on the content you wish to watch... esp for a student like me who used to get distracted even by the slightest change and prefers online study... thank you soo much!! Thank you so much for sharing this information!!

  7. Lance
    June 18, 2019 at 8:28 pm

    My issue is that search results are heavily skewed to my watch history. Also, I am NOT logged in, yet it still happens.

    • Kendrick Jamone Davis
      September 9, 2019 at 4:30 am

      Go into settings in youtube and turn off permissions... You can changed recommended things... You can even turn off showing things that you viewed from coming back and making reccomendations of. Its in settings... It would direct you to browser settings next... I yse google i turned everything off

  8. kamal
    May 21, 2019 at 4:40 pm

    In my case its not working, seriouslly recommendation are worst, why those utubers exists

  9. SunFlower
    May 13, 2019 at 8:26 pm

    "Once you watch just one all of those old recommendations will reappear." exactly
    "None of this actually deals with the flood of unwanted videos. It just changes one stupid flood for another." - exactly.
    I am flooded with STUPID cobra kai suggestions very often, and no matter I set "not interested", after few days here it is. And I never watching such videos. So YT is constantly trying to induce you on VIOLENCE. So is YT evil?

  10. Mike
    May 11, 2019 at 1:44 am

    No it doesn't. It will keep giving random channels to check out. Once you watch just one all of those old recommendations will reappear.

  11. Fletcher
    February 27, 2019 at 6:30 am

    Clearing watch history and search history just makes your entire Home page irrelevant. Thanks for ruining my recommendations even further.

    • Kendrick Jamone Davis
      September 9, 2019 at 4:33 am

      Go to settings in yoytube and it would turn it off ... You can even change your browsers algorithms in browser settings as well

  12. mata
    December 23, 2018 at 1:41 am

    You are a YT lover so your article help no one but the a-hols from youtube

  13. Robert
    December 21, 2018 at 5:30 pm

    None of this actually deals with the flood of unwanted videos. It just changes one stupid flood for another.

  14. Wendell Bud
    December 18, 2018 at 2:58 am

    YouTube's recommendations have gotten as bad as Google's completely irrelevant and/or cherry-picked agendist search results.

    Even a couple years ago YouTube's sidebar recommendations used to be right in-line with what I was watching, having me clicking away. Now I can't even find search results that meet my criteria, and the sidebar recommendations are obviously some lame attempt to force "trending" onto certain videos that have absolutely nothing to do with my viewing patterns.

  15. buck rogers
    December 10, 2018 at 4:59 pm

    Certain youtube recommendations are sick, they should include an option to control or remove certain recommended videos or channels, so it could better modify the algorithm's pattern weaving.

  16. JP
    November 15, 2018 at 12:18 am

    I do this regularly, however when i reset my history youtube then starts just recommending all sports videos and anything and everything to do with kim kardashian, and endless endless "live" videos , which I have absolutely no desire to watch either. I'm pretty certain their algorithms are broken because when i say i'm not interested in a sports video and tell them because "i dont like the video" and "i'm not interested in channel ESPN", i'll go back to the home screen and BAM, now they've carved out a whole separate section of recommended videos just for ESPN.

  17. xsfx
    November 1, 2018 at 5:40 pm

    I have a right-side click that allows removing suggestion right inside the suggestion box. Yay! See if your version allows-and I NEVER update a bloody thing unless death is NOT a lesser evil.
    reloading/go to new video fixes. (Any cure for Adobe? :P )

  18. Uncle Joe
    September 26, 2018 at 6:32 pm

    Yeah, right. And if you feel bloating - kill yourself, and bloating will disappear. Wonderful advice. Killing history is equal evil to having recommendations.

    • Ikomrad
      September 2, 2019 at 2:23 am

      True, I use my history extensively to remember a video that I watched a few days ago that I now want to download or maybe leave a comment on, so blowing it away is not an option.

      I've started using the "don't recommend channel" but I don't want to just block recommendations, I'd like to configure them.

      Like when I click on Home in the iOS app ( I never watch videos in an Web browser ) , I've noticed there are topics there, but not topics I am interested in . I'd like to be able to select which topics are on Home.

      And it would be great to mark channels and topics as favorites so that they are at the top of my feed! Maybe even have Folders to put subscriptions into to organize them better.

  19. Uncle Ruckus
    August 14, 2018 at 12:16 am

    You cannot possibly be serious saying that Youtube's recommendation feature is good intentioned. Their algorithm is complete trash, the porn sites I visit have search, filter and recommendation algorithms that give far better results than Youtube.

    So how can a multi-billion dollar company have a worse core product than the average porn site? We could chalk it up to incompetence, but given Google's MO, I'm fairly confident 'recommendations' are just what they call "we want you to watch this for political/corporate reasons."

  20. Common Sense
    August 10, 2018 at 6:16 am

    Exactly what last guy said:
    2013 article youtube help is no longer relevant in 2018. Google changes yt on a regular basis so I can't follow the method used here.

    AND so you need to PULL it DOWN - delete this article - OR UPDATE it DUDE. Otherwise, it's just GARBAGE, IN THE WAY OF USEFUL information.

  21. Me
    August 7, 2018 at 12:57 am

    2013 article youtube help is no longer relevant in 2018. Google changes yt on a regular basis so I can't follow the method used here.

  22. Paul
    July 29, 2018 at 5:18 pm

    That was what I was looking for, your info helped out a great deal, thanks.

  23. Boris S.
    July 29, 2018 at 4:20 am

    Huh, and what would one do with youtube DEFAULT recommendations which are shown with empty (& switched off) spying "feature"?

    Every time I open YT the 99% of videos it suggests is Russian scum. Mostly pro-Putin, anti-Western and anti-Ukrainian propaganda. No matter if I do login or not, whether I use desktop/laptop or mobile/tablet. Looks like the YT determines my location by IP and recommends the very things I do NOT want to watch. Yeah, I live in the Ukrainian region occupied by Russians, and it can be discovered from my IP. But why the hell they in google desided that everyone here is happy with the information blokade established by Russian terrorists and preferres to watch their propaganda everywhere???

  24. ru342gt983gt9
    July 7, 2018 at 11:44 pm

    None of these worked for me.

    Stupid YouTube Recommendations, always hindering my recovery progress towards porn addiction.

    • Peter Nelson
      July 13, 2018 at 1:52 am

      Youtube doesn't have porn.

      • ru342gt983gt9
        September 7, 2018 at 2:04 am

        You're right, but YouTube does have half-naked women in nearly every thumbnail.

    • Peter Nelson
      July 13, 2018 at 2:03 am

      None of these worked for me.

      When I go to Youtube I always log in as myself, so it knows who I am. And 95% of what I watch is either . . .
      - History (mostly military, but some civil)
      - Technology tutorials such as on Adobe Premiere, Photoshop, OpenToonz, or sofware development.
      - Classical music and modern dance
      - Travelogues - I travel a lot and check out places I go before leaving

      I wouldn't mind more recommendations in those things but I hardly EVER get recommendations in those. Mostly I get recommendations in completely irrelevant stuff, like TV shows (I don't watch *ANY* TV), funny cat videos, movie trailers, celebrity news and other irrelevant fluff. I have no idea how it comes up with those and I have no idea why it ignores what I DO watch.

  25. vstdgmr
    June 30, 2018 at 7:15 pm

    Ok... I can understand this being the case if I've watched a video from a channel and all I'm getting from that point on is that channel's uploads. But I don't see this fixing the constant "learn colors with toy trucks" 24/7 streams that keep showing up in my recommendations.

  26. AnonymousGuy
    May 24, 2018 at 7:09 pm

    How to do this on MAC????? It doesn't work for me

  27. spuds mceknzie
    May 15, 2018 at 10:51 am

    I don't mind the recommendations, but just because I watched a video from one person doesn't mean I want to watch every video that person has ever uploaded. Lately it seems that after watching one, the recommendation list has about 10 videos from the person I just watched. I don't want to block them....I just don't want to see everything they've ever done.

  28. a
    April 29, 2018 at 1:02 pm

    that's fake with some random picture with "options". youtube has no such menu

  29. you
    April 16, 2018 at 5:19 pm

    My issue is that I get recommendations for videos I already watched. Clearing my history isn't going to fix that, it's going to make it worse.

  30. Sum Ting Wong
    March 23, 2018 at 5:19 pm

    BULLSHIT! I have never searched for videos popping up in my recommendations and I have accidentally watched ONE, yes ONE!

  31. Debabrata Patnaik
    February 4, 2018 at 1:07 pm

    Thanks for the explaination. Really helped to get rid of annoying recomendation.
    One point to add, use incognito mode or dont login to google account to ensure your youtube views are not getting tracked. Hope it helps.

  32. Teri
    January 7, 2018 at 7:09 pm

    What I am looking for is how to control what is shown after MY uploaded videos and that of my clients. I have several clients who have YouTube channels. They don't want people to associate them with the videos that randomly pop up after their videos. I totally agree. Is there a way to control this? If not, I can't recommend Youtube for my clients.

  33. Ky Andersen
    January 7, 2018 at 12:30 am

    It's so obvious it's for ads! all recommended videos I mean all are for advertising first! period!! Any statement otherwise is misleading or a company with interest in youtube, Google or related advertiser losers!

  34. Emanuel M. Fróes
    January 4, 2018 at 6:57 am

    God! Think! they will return since you beginnn to search things again! I does not make any sense. The point is: people dont want weird recomendations every time, they want do set it on other off. Sometimes is good, other not. I wasted time seeing the stupid idiotical and crazy russian roofers who dies doing this for ex. On the ther hand, i wrote a good review of it, thats was the good point.

  35. Nunya
    December 23, 2017 at 4:22 am

    Worthless article....totally and i really really mean that.

    • Ky Andersen
      January 7, 2018 at 12:30 am

      Your so right!

  36. Nunya
    December 23, 2017 at 4:19 am


    • Rob
      April 10, 2018 at 1:04 pm

      Blimey, don't type PERIOD, i hate to think what videos you'd be seeing!

    • Indra
      May 28, 2018 at 4:14 pm

      100% totally agree with you, Nunya!

  37. Eric
    November 22, 2017 at 4:30 am

    I'm tired of what is recommended more by the channel and not the group, for instance I like to watch minecraft videos of a few ppl yet I get DanTDM or some other adult trying to get in the pants of a 5 year old as recommended to me, it seems utub has a whole list of certain ppl they try and shove on you when you have shown zero interest in them.

    I could like utub more if they stopped trying to shove their favorite filth channels on me.

    • Rob
      April 10, 2018 at 12:02 pm

      I've never had any filth, in fact i've never seen ANY filth on YouTube in all the years i've been using it!

  38. Some Guy
    October 9, 2017 at 3:08 am

    This is click bait and it's stupid. I'm not trying to be a troll, but it says that anonymously trolling is a feature, when you can't comment anonymously and that isn't even a feature ("feature". Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc. 9 Oct. 2017. .). and Google only tracks you for making ads that you might like appear, it's not like they sell it! And assuming that people think YouTube is evil? Man, People are just fabulous at jumping to conclusions...

  39. spykerhond
    September 30, 2017 at 8:56 am

    but even these comments get filtered by people interested in fake representation of what users really think. This started with the so called improvements.

  40. spykerhond
    September 30, 2017 at 8:54 am

    All critical comments get moderated

  41. spykerhond
    September 30, 2017 at 8:54 am

    all positive comments don't get moderated ?

  42. spykerhond
    September 30, 2017 at 8:52 am

    choice bigotry.

  43. Emil Ankerstjerne
    August 29, 2017 at 6:18 pm

    This is the most worthless solution to a problem ever. Who'd want to get rid of their youtube history for this little? Thanks for nothing.

  44. Dawl
    August 29, 2017 at 4:07 am

    Screw youtube, i've done the aforementioned and it keeps showing me recommended videos of spoilers to shows i stopped watching years ago.

    After ghostery and adblock, i guess i will have to find a way to rid myself of everything but the video itself, hit em where it hurts....their pockets.

  45. binary01
    August 24, 2017 at 12:12 am

    It would seem that until YT is a paid service we will always receive recommendations to videos/channels they hope we'll watch, and in turn generate ad revenue.

    It's much like when you go shopping for a car, you know exactly what you're after but the dealership will show you a wide range of cars whether they suit your needs or not.

    I don't approve of this method but I understand the reasoning behind the madness. I typically select "not interested" and it does eventually tune your recommendations. There will be instances where popular main stream channels will always be promoted by YT, but using the "not interested" function is as close as we'll get to removing junk from the recommended list.

  46. Vlad
    June 30, 2017 at 7:23 am

    These suggestions assume that you are logged in when using Youtube. (Look at the screenshots.)

    So it's a biased article. It's from somebody who accepts and actively encourages surveillance of all Internet users, all the time.

    Looking at the actual issue, complete removal of history etc. is not what users generally want. If they're like me they appreciate some suggestions and not others. (I've read material from brainless idiots, now I keep getting suggestions to see more brainlessness; great huh!)

    I guess the answer is to control the suggestion engine. It would be nice if there were a way to send your tuned "search" and "watch" lists to Youtube, if that is all that it is able to understand. Google may have no interest in helping you there, but it might be doable.

  47. andres
    June 18, 2017 at 9:37 pm

    I don't think it's based on either of those. It's suggest things that I have never watched. Not even close. It's suggest live stream gaming. Never watched a gaming video in my life. It's suggest how to do makeup. Haven't watched any of those either.

    • mica
      October 24, 2017 at 7:44 am


      Same here. I never ever watch gaming videos or videos on 'how to do make up'. Yet my recommendations for the last month have been mainly videos for 'how to do your make up', 'Logan Paul videos', 'KSI', 'Connor Mcgregor' and videos about 'Trump'.

      I have never watched a single video on President Trump while signed in or out of Youtube, I don't know who Logan Paul is, I have no interest in boxing and what is KSI?

      The youtube app on my mobile is even worse, they recommend stuff I would never ever watch. I get loads of football (soccer) videos and I hate football.

      Deleting or pausing your history or searches is not going to help. They simply do not offer people videos based on what they watch and like, they offer you the videos they want to push in your face. Trending videos are usually nonsense but I get those pushed at me all the time.

  48. William
    May 11, 2017 at 5:49 pm

    Deleting your watch history is ineffective as YouTube still recommends videos based on what history you deleted. I've had recommendations of videos that I deleted a long time ago pop up. YouTube still keeps your history no matter what you do to remove it.

    • TheMan
      August 17, 2017 at 5:07 am

      I concur. I've had the same thing happen to me.

      • William
        August 17, 2017 at 8:10 am

        It's annoying how there's no way to tell YouTube about this so they can fix this because leaving feedback and chatting with their support did nothing for me lol. You'd think they'd actually care about a problem that makes up a third of all of the traffic made on the site. But oh well, it's not like I pay for YouTube Red anymore, I'll just start using a strict ad block from now on and justify it by claiming that if YouTube can't listen to their users, I can't listen to their ads.

  49. tersse
    May 5, 2017 at 7:39 pm

    i dont want to remove recomendations i want to make it current, i dont want recomended vids from 9 years ago, cant they add a selec vids from button and let us type in last week or last month , last year etc, this would be very helpful.

  50. Mike
    March 9, 2017 at 1:56 am

    That does not work at all. I just tried it. After clearing everything I got no recommendations. So I clicked on two videos of stuff I normally watch. Now I keep getting garbage again that doesn't relate at all to anything I watch.

  51. Brok
    February 27, 2017 at 10:43 am

    "But if you think about it, it’s a noble thing for YouTube to suggest videos that you might like based on your browsing habits". Why? I once told my ex wife that I liked spaghetti, she, like Google later, assumed that I wanted it for every meal. It is that same unimaginative thinking that places the fine cracks in a relationship.
    The truth is that Google are not interested in what you view, apart from the fact that they can direct advertising more efficiently if there is a trace on what you watch. It has nothing whatsoever to do with altruism, efficient 'service' or customer satisfaction, it is about revenue - advertising revenue. ... and now, we have the 'not interested button' I suppose a medical comparison would be the placebo.

    • Rob
      April 10, 2018 at 12:59 pm

      An alternative view would be to only have the option to search for subjects you want to see there and then.
      This is like walking into a library and being only allowed to wander down the shelves with books similar to the last book you took out.
      For younger readers use google to see what a library is.
      AND book...

  52. Alexander
    February 24, 2017 at 11:44 pm

    The worst thing is that the recommendations are always the same, and when you tap on the "Flame" button (mobile), those are also always the same. There's no way whatsoever to get "random new interesting videos" :(

  53. Ephraim Shofar
    February 6, 2017 at 3:45 pm

    This is pure speculation, you have no proof of this "solution" whatsoever. I can tell you from first hand experience as a YouTube user since 2/2007 that it's total bullshit.

    February 2, 2017 at 10:04 pm

    Thank you for your help in clearing out search history.

  55. Alice P.
    January 13, 2017 at 2:20 am

    Your viewing history is only part of it. Often I received recommended videos that had nothing to do with my viewing or interest. Just today, Youtube recommended three different new chiropractic channels to me. I have never searched for chiropractors or physiotherapists or anything in that sort. I wonder if these channels actually pay Youtube to recommend them to us. Sometimes they even recommend videos in foreign language that I couldn't understand. What's the point of that?

    • Mark
      January 18, 2017 at 9:19 am

      Indeed I am also sick of these recommendations. Often they recommend videos with such obscene thumbnails that I feel awkward to open YouTube home page in presence of others. I would really have paid for a premium at nominal price, if only they would provide a clean page with only a search bar leaving it to me , what I want to watch.

      • Rob
        April 10, 2018 at 12:53 pm

        I wouldn't mind being offered some smut, but i've never searched for or found any on youtube. Maybe i have some filter settings tab i've not found yet and it's set on default 'prude' setting?

    • Cosette
      June 7, 2017 at 10:33 pm

      This exactly. I get a ton of foreign language recommendations, and a bunch of recommendations for video games I have never played and TV shows I have never seen. I don't watch or play anything remotely similar so it isn't some guilty pleasure search from long ago. And if it's outside recommendations, where are they getting this wrong information from? I don't have kids, my husband has his own account, and he doesn't watch/play those things anyway.

      Honestly, if they try to show me one more Overwatch video, I am going to scream. I don't even know what it is. Shut up and give me back my political comedy.

    • Rob
      April 10, 2018 at 12:55 pm

      Don't forget google is everywhere. If you use chrome it's google. If you use google on your phone, it's linked...
      I read online that smart tvs with voice activation are just as bad. In fact ANYTHING that has voice activation is always listening. And recording...

  56. Normal Dude
    January 12, 2017 at 3:37 pm

    WTF?! Does YouTube/Google track our IP addresses so they can keep "recommending" the same $h!t we don't want to see?!!! DAMMIT, IT'S ANNOYING!!! There's only so much of any politicians, hollywood doosh, etc., I can take!!! uuuugggghhhh


  57. MatalicPebble
    December 29, 2016 at 10:33 pm

    I did this and it worked for a while and then it quit. I am back where I started. If it was not for Youtube having the monopoly of videos then I would leave and never come back. Browsing history is turned off and it still goes from my subscriptions to stuff that I am not even remotely interested in.
    Youtube Take a freakin hint!!!

    • Ulises
      December 30, 2016 at 4:14 pm

      I found a solution that actually worked. Just go to your history and delete the video that is being used for the recommendations you don't want to see. So let's say you watch a Family Guy video and from then on your recommendations have three or four Family Guys videos you don't want to see; just go to the History and delete only the Family Guy video you actually watched.

  58. Kooza
    December 24, 2016 at 8:27 am

    But it says that I have to be logged in, to see my history =(
    When I am logged in, it works okay, as I am watching movies and listen the music this way for the most time . The problem is that I sometimes use youtube while being logged out and listening to stuff like Nightcore music, where what some random people add some anime girls background (why???), makes them.... keep appearing in my recommendations, on almost every video I see :O

    Anyone knows what to do with this sh*t? I just want to listen to music normally >_<

    • Rayan Osman
      January 21, 2017 at 6:18 am

      Yes! You can still clear it on a laptop, even if though you can't view it.

  59. LL
    November 14, 2016 at 7:34 pm

    So you have to PAY to get rid of irrelevant sh**t?
    Are you f**ing kidding me?

  60. roman
    October 23, 2016 at 9:32 am

    Hi. I want to share my experience:
    It's enough to use filter
    with adblock or any other script blocker.

    • Dimitar
      September 1, 2017 at 9:37 am

      My god,
      This actually works. Thanks a lot.

  61. GoogleIsEvil
    October 17, 2016 at 4:43 pm

    Clearing your history does nothing. Selecting "Not Interested" does nothing. You'll see the videos Google wants you to see.

    • Quinn
      November 19, 2016 at 3:46 am

      For a while now my home page had my first 2 subscriptions showing as 'recommended channels'. . hello? .. but that was fine, it was keeping out the garbage-- until today.
      . . . An avalanche of stupid' so-called 'recommended videos', to be deleted individually, only to be replaced by more crap, and more, even the same crap returned. History/search has been cleared a long time, but they still spy on and track users.

      This crap on my homepage that keeps regnerating endlessly is INFURIATING. While I can't stop it, I thought of a way to NOT SEE IT ! I brought up my channel, with a pleasant self-chosen image for the banner, bookmarked it to the bookmark bar (in Chrome). So now when I go to youtube it's by means of that bookmark, I see only my channel art, and don't feel like smashing the PC with a hammer anymore.

  62. TheOncomingStorm
    September 10, 2016 at 1:02 am

    clearing and stopping the search/watch history does nothing. i did that yonks ago and i'm STILL getting channel recommendations. based off of what? i have no fecken clue.

  63. Lassiter
    September 4, 2016 at 2:51 pm

    I completely disagree with your premise. Their recommendations are not pesky, they simply are pushing content from corporations instead of really using our search history like they used to.
    Indeed, it is cool that YouTube used to use algorithms based on search history to recommend things relevant. That's the beauty of the technology they helped to invent, that's the point of their use of their archive, which has been uploaded by the world. It doesn't really matter how much content they get, that shouldn't impact the algorithm that recommends based on what we have historically liked before. Telling readers to just delete their history and start over and then calling the issue "pesky" is missing the point.
    YouTube should not let its algorithms be based on favoring corporate media subscriptions. That's the point. It's clear they're doing it. Why, I don't know; you're the journalist. Investigate please.

    • LegendLength
      September 8, 2016 at 12:32 pm

      I use youtube a lot and have seen no sign of corporate videos being pushed ahead of others in the recommended section.

      My problem is the section gives you a very limited range of videos and even if you have viewed thousands of different videos, it starts repeating recommendations every few pages as you scroll through the list. It even gives you videos that you have liked (often) or even disliked!

  64. josie
    August 31, 2016 at 11:19 am

    Question... how to remove "recommended" when I am not signed in? I dont want to be signed in to google if i can avoid it.. thanks in advance kind regards Josie in Australia

  65. Shyren
    August 25, 2016 at 8:04 am

    I already have my history paused. Maybe that's why absolutely none of the videos I see I like? I keep getting Steven Universe, The Amazing World of Gumball, random music videos, basketball, comic dubs, let's players and commentators that I can't stand, other channels I don't like, a random assortment of Anime YouTubers, Yandere Simulator, and other stuff I'm really not interested in. When I try to put "Not Interested", it either works, and does nothing to change them, or I accidentally tap on the video, which just gets me more videos I don't like.

  66. Puppy
    August 19, 2016 at 6:57 am

    I love animals and especially dogs. I've been doing a lot of activism against the very cruel and sadistic dog meat trade in Asia where they torture dogs before slaughtering and eating them (they believe torturing the dogs before slaughter has "health benefits" and makes their men more virile) However, I reached a point after months of doing this where I nearly had a mental breakdown. <:'( I have my strong moments when I can take it but every now and then I need a break to keep my sanity. I just turned on You Tube to watch some totally unrelated videos and low and behold got lots and lots of Yulin Dog Festival and Asian Dog Meat Trade video suggestions so panicked and just turned it off. I am crying now. I would like a way to filter content, sort of like the "adult content" filter only for things that I don't want them to shove into my face unexpectedly when I least expect it. Just FYI, I will never stop fighting against this sadistic sick trade. I just need a break from it every now and then. Unfortunately, You Tube doesn't realise this.

    • George
      August 28, 2016 at 5:45 am

      Use two accounts to log in to YouTube. Make sure you only browse the dog-related videos from one particular account, then when you've had enough, use the other account for your pleasant viewing.

  67. psiklon
    August 11, 2016 at 3:27 am

    Your suggestions were right on, youtube saw I looked at radio control planes and sent me suggestions to watch the latest military weapons and why Clinton is an alien communist. Very weird system that they use. I also noticed that when I used firefox's private window mode to surf , youtube immediately made suggestions on another browser I later used based on what I watched. Looks like they do a lot of watching themselves. And they see through digital walls like superman...Thanks for helping me block a ton of unwanted suggestions.

    • Brooks
      December 13, 2016 at 2:39 pm

      You have absolutely 0 clue what private browsing is or what it isn't. It is no sort of wall whatsoever, get that out of your head. It keeps things from showing up on your computer, like visited websites but you still send out your IP and more when you go to websites, those websites can still use that data. Welcome to the close of 2016, you now know a little more about how the internet has worked since its creation. By now, anyone who doesn't know that things are watched whenever possible, has blinders on. I will leave you with VPN and Tor, those are more along the lines of what I believe you are looking for.

      • Rob
        April 10, 2018 at 12:42 pm

        I now use a VPN so nobody on the other side of my screen knows where i am. According to my IP address, i spend a lot of time in Eastern Europe...

  68. deepak
    July 8, 2016 at 1:27 pm

    Thank you dude!!!

  69. Mike
    July 3, 2016 at 6:11 pm

    I don't gather search or video history, so why the heck are they recommending video channels I don't care for..... How can I replace the recommendations with subscriber channels.

  70. Pete
    June 3, 2016 at 12:14 am

    Thanks for reminding me, Joel. I knew that, a couple of years go, after trying it a random.
    But, I'd forgotten. I recently came to the conclusion that it was fairly well intentioned.
    That was, UNTIL... 3 or so months ago, YouTube began to load up my account page with
    "recommendations" that were completely unrelated to what I'd previously viewed. I took
    the time to remove them and even took their little "Tell Us Why" survey. But, even though
    they claimed -- just after I clicked on "Not Interested" -- that they "Got it. We'll try harder to
    fine tune our recommendations"... well, they didn't try! Many of their very worst kept on
    appearing! After reading your little blog, though, I thought to myself: "Oh, yeah! That's it!"

  71. BrokenEye, True False Prophet
    May 27, 2016 at 9:35 pm

    I was more than a little freaked out to discover that I was receiving recommendations based on videos I'd watched on a completely different site, which uses a different video hosting platform. How the hell did they know about that? What right do they have to even be looking at that?

    On the bright side, after doing everything you said, I told it to ignore all the generic untailored suggestions on the homepage, and then did it again, and apparently this was enough to hamstring the suggestions engine, because now it's not giving me any suggestions at all. Thank god for life's little victories.

  72. Prek
    May 22, 2016 at 2:08 pm

    Seriously, I mean, Youtube (google) is going overboard with their recommendations. It is kind of creepy as well as embarrassing. There are many ways humanity can benefit from machine learning but this is not one.

  73. Don
    May 20, 2016 at 11:26 pm

    Great post! I just want it to not recommend videos that I have already seen or videos that are in my watch later queue. THAT is really the biggest problem with recommendations to me!

  74. Paladin
    April 28, 2016 at 12:56 am

    As a huge anime fan I can now watch videos in peace without being harrassed by spoilers from other YouTube accounts / videos so thanks a lot.

  75. Hemant kumar arya
    April 19, 2016 at 12:05 pm

    Awesome post. Now we can remove Recommended videos from Youtube home page in just one click. This is really helpfull.

    Thank you..?

  76. Sapphire
    March 16, 2016 at 12:14 am

    Where the HELL do you find the checklist that gives the option to show APPEARANCE, and then the check box "Hide video suggestions"????

    I REALLY HATE THESE SUGGESTIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS, waste of time, clicking myself into carpal tunnel and tendinitis to click to delete everything.

    Clearing search or watch history does nothing.

    • Potato
      April 24, 2016 at 8:24 pm

      LOL ikr??

  77. Tim
    February 25, 2016 at 12:38 am

    This info is inaccurate. Instead click on History on left of site and click "Clear all Watch History". Not only is this blog inaccurate, but the actual solution is simpler. I think you were more concerned with ad revenue then helping anyone. I wish you bad luck on your site.

  78. Quinn
    January 25, 2016 at 4:33 pm

    clicking on the Youtube Options link leads to a PAID subscription service NO.

  79. Grave
    January 25, 2016 at 2:39 am

    okay now teach me how to keep it from recommending videos i've already watched... even though i went to the trouble of selecting "not interested" and give "because i've already watched this" as a reason.

  80. Siifidf
    January 7, 2016 at 4:57 pm

    yes thanks .. this crappy feature was playing on my nerves for some time now ..

  81. kk
    December 1, 2015 at 2:23 pm

    Even when not logged also, I'am getting recommendations how to remove it and even these recommendations are entirely different to what i have subscribed/watched when im logged in .
    I have cleared my entire browsing history,cookies,cache & still getting the same, when i click on youtube main page recommendations are displayed . Atleast i don't want to see recommendations on the youtube main page.

    • ash
      December 3, 2015 at 6:25 pm

      Me too. It is annoying. I'm getting recommendations that are nothing to do with me. I am not in the USA, I do not care for people telling me to vote out someone or telling me someone is 'Anti-American'. A lot of the people talking about Anti-Americans are 'Anti-American' by their own definition in some other way either against LGBT or bait anyone who isn't a Christian (studying A level Government and Politics when we touched on American politics I'd had enough of that already). I don't care for the childish political discourse of the USA. I really don't want awful 'fail' video complications, I do not want to know about the 'people who you didn't think existed'. It is all mind-numbing to me. Can we bring the quiet in this world a little?

      • Ryumoau
        May 10, 2016 at 2:57 am

        What are you babbling about, you idiot.

        • Que
          September 22, 2018 at 2:09 pm

          Aw, was Ash using words of more than one syllable? Bless your illiterate heart...

  82. Al
    November 24, 2015 at 11:28 pm

    I usually press not interested and it seems to do the trick but this time around the YouTube app self refreshes and returns all of the recommendations I juuust canceled.

  83. Anonymous
    September 14, 2015 at 5:44 pm

    Thanks for the article...

    But I actually like the recommendations, I'd just like to specifically remove Richard Dorkins related videos, rather than resetting everything.

    As for Google, they mostly manage to be so useful that lots of people are willing to trade their data for the stuff Google offers.

    I have no issue with that.

    But Google has started mandating that manufacturers wanting to produce a Nexus device aren't permitted to include a Micro-SD card slot, to force our data files into their cloud. That actually is very far from good-intentioned.

    • Anonymous
      November 7, 2015 at 4:56 am

      One thing you can do is remove specific videos from the watch history. Even that doesn't quite do what I want but it's better.

    • Rob
      April 10, 2018 at 12:37 pm

      I don't agree.
      If i'm searching for a spade to dig a hole, i don't want to be seeing adverts of shovels to KAT 7ton earth movers for the next six weeks!
      Likewaise with car insurance. I search just before the renewal date. What's the bloody point in seeing adverts for car insurance TWO MONTHS LATER?
      I just wish there was an option to tick for NO ADVERTS!
      I can get around the adverts by watching youtube with Firefox. But when i click on youtube it does really annoy me when between my subscribed channels there are all these 'recommended channels'. I DON'T WANT THEM!

  84. Anonymous
    June 6, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    Great read and interesting points. At least it's something to shake up the recommendation-tree.

    I am, however, surprised that YouTube, being all about content, tracking, and attempting to deliver what it thinks people wants (or rather perhaps what might get them the most ad-revenue)... surprised that like several other websites out there, there's no section under your account/personal settings to check off boxes of things that interest you.

    Like on how some websites there's a series of boxes which might include, "Gaming, Entertainment, Sports, Finance, News, Politics, Religion", etc. Be nice to not only be able to select what interests us, so the "recommendations" can sort of prioritize what we're looking for over what we're not, but also a way to also outright x-out certain things, like "politics" or "finance".

    I sometimes get recommendations for videos or channels that have ZERO connection to anything I've ever searched or watched before; and with all the security I have in place, and having triple-checked my account, I know it wasn't hacked. Can only imagine people are misusing the tagging system or something, tagging the videos in sections/categories that they're not relevant to whatsoever. -_-

    • Anonymous
      August 16, 2015 at 6:38 am

      Misuse of the tagging system is one of the most common reasons for irrelevant videos finding their way into your recommended list. And it means having a check list of what you are most interested in will not solve this aspect of the issue.

      There are often people who tag things with whatever they feel is popular in the hopes that people will misclick their way into a viewing. I still remember a professor telling me that the most common tag for a website back in the 1990's was "Britney Spears" even if the website had nothing to do with Britney Spears, people have been tagging things wrong to trick others since the dawn of the internet search.

  85. Noor
    December 22, 2014 at 2:00 pm

    Do you know how I could do this on Youtube Vita? I never let my son watch Youtube, but he loves Minecraft and the guys he likes are safe to watch. I am just worried about everything else. I installed the app, set it up as strict and STILL saw a recommendation of men kissing. Not something I want my 7 year old to see. I may just have to delete it.

    • Anonymous
      August 22, 2015 at 5:20 pm

      There's a official YouTube app exclusively for kids in which kids can't search for blocked items even if they wanted to. Cheers!

    • Anonymous
      August 24, 2015 at 9:20 pm

      But a video of a man and a woman kissing would be okay?

      • Anonymous
        September 14, 2015 at 8:17 pm

        You know what? How bout "you" do "you"...and let others do "them.
        Nuff said

  86. MasterDewd
    March 6, 2014 at 6:55 pm

    I get suggestions based on my region, I can't remove those

  87. Seeratul
    February 6, 2014 at 10:28 pm

    Thank You ... I achieved what i wanted!

  88. Ophelia
    February 6, 2014 at 9:47 pm

    THANK YOU -__-!

  89. Stefan Nilsson
    January 26, 2014 at 4:02 am

    I don't mind recommendations - I actually like the idea of finding related videos. However! It's often the same recommended videos, week after week, and often videos I've already seen. Plenty of people are asking and they should really make it possible to remove/hide/downvote videos you're not interested in so you can get some fresh recommendations.

  90. Jordan
    December 29, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    I recommend Youtube Center as it has more Features than Youtube Options and it is available as a Userscript and Addons for Firefox, Opera, Chrome, Maxthon, Internet Explorer, and more. It's open source too so you know exactly what goes in it.

    Site: https://github.com/YePpHa/YouTubeCenter/wiki

    • Joel L
      December 30, 2013 at 5:52 am

      I recently discovered Youtube Center and I agree that it is awesome. Had I known about it at the time, it would've gotten a #1 spot on most of my Youtube recommendation posts.

    • Jordan
      December 31, 2013 at 2:38 am

      Well, the future is still wide open for posting ;)

  91. mrswillroth
    December 11, 2013 at 4:06 am

    I am trying to do this with my android phone using the YouTube app. I don't get the same options to delete search history...unless it is hidden somewhere and I can't find it...I must get those videos off my account...I have small children and they are very graphic and have nothing to do with anything I ever watched. Help!

  92. Cynthia
    November 15, 2013 at 9:12 am

    It doesn't work at all because when i log out, i still got "recommended videos" I really think its link to your Ip so you can't delete them.

  93. sajani
    November 10, 2013 at 1:57 am

    Thank you!!!!! I deleted the search history and watch history and it worked!!! No more recommendations!!!

    • Joel L
      November 12, 2013 at 2:18 am

      Awesome! Good to know it worked for you. :)

  94. Jo Marsh
    September 20, 2013 at 4:50 pm

    This is useful to know but I am always being recommended reality tv crap, which I HATE, and certainly would never ever search for. I have been signed up with youtube for years, and while they do recommend stuff which is useful, I have no clue why I am being given this rubbish. So ultimately they must use something other than my search history etc.

  95. JDonner
    September 17, 2013 at 8:54 am

    NOTE: I had everything well aligned, but your web site removed all hard returns and made the text hard to read and it doesn't even allow me to edit my comments, so that I can't even change the "Leave" (dyslexia mistake) into "Life".

    If you want people to contribute to your site, then make sure that your sloppy coding isn't annoying them or am I really that unfair?

    • Joel L
      September 20, 2013 at 5:05 pm

      I'm not sure what you mean because all of the hard returns are there in your comment(s).

  96. JDonner
    September 17, 2013 at 8:45 am


    1. Install add-on Adblock Plus 2.3.2
    2. Install add-on Element Hiding Helper for Adblock Plus 1.2.3


    Leave can be so easy when you know how to Google...wink, wink.