Skip to main content

PageRank Through YouTube

As I was considering what topic to discuss for this blog post, I found myself mindlessly clicking around YouTube from video to video, once again in a stuck in a situation brought on by procrastination. But upon going to yet another related video suggested by YouTube, I realized that I was in a network the whole time. Every video on YouTube provides you with a list of other videos that you may be interested in on the side, and this can cause one to spend hours browsing around the video site.

I was curious how this network worked. How did YouTube successfully give me more and more videos to choose from that kept me from leaving and doing actual work? Immediately I thought about the PageRank concept. When determining a link’s PageRank, the search engine will look at the amount of web pages that point to it, then this information is used to determine those pages’ PageRanks. This process is done back and forth repeatedly to determine the most accurate value that will be used to make the page’s PageRank. After this value is calculated, the most relevant websites to someone’s search will be shown on the results page.

On YouTube, this process is done between videos. Since the recommended videos are generated by YouTube itself, the rank of each video cannot be determined simply by linking from video to video. I set out to discover which factors play a large part in giving each video relevant matches. It seems that the most important, and obvious, factors are the video’s current views, title, description, and, probably most importantly, its tags. The tags play a big role because the videos with the most tags in common, otherwise known as keywords to identify a video, will point to each other. This will then give each video a higher PageRank relevant to its tags. When someone enters a search query that uses specific words, the relevant videos based on these factors will be shown to them.

Other factors here are the views that your channel has, the amount of subscribers you have accumulated, and how well your other videos rank on the site. The deep integration of all of these factors to provide recommended videos to its users shows just how much YouTube has incorporated the concepts of networks. As YouTube evolves its search engines, their algorithms will only improve and give us a better experience overall.


– Kirby


One Response to “ PageRank Through YouTube ”

  • Charlotte Keenan

    Kirby – you are right but the all these can be irrelevant if the content is poor, because YouTube want you to watch the video as this is more revenue for them. So if people are ditching within seconds, even with all the above, they wont get found because content is still King.

Leave a Reply

Blogging Calendar

October 2012