Statistics on YouTube, View Counts and Honors

This information is no longer relevant.  YouTube has changed their functionality where Most Viewed is no longer the default video page.  The new default video page is called Most Popular and nobody has quite figured out how it works.

I was responding to a question in the comments section by Fianchetto’s Ghost about statistics on my videos.   He was wondering why wasn’t showing up as a site linking to the current video on YouTube and if watching the video on this website contributed to the overall view count of the video at all or if he should go over to YouTube to watch the video to have his views count. I started to answer the question there, but realized that the answer was too long for a comment.   So, here is a little lesson on how YouTube counts things and what they mean.

The Statistics Tab and View Count

When you look at one of my videos on YouTube, below the video you will see two tabs, one for Commentary and the other is called Statistics & Data as you can see in the image on the right.   You can also see the total video views for the video.

When I first upload a video to YouTube, it takes a while for the statistics to show up.. but eventually they do.   The view count first jumps to around 202 and then stops there for a while until it updates again a few hours later.   This has something to do with the way YouTube’s servers serve up pages, and that’s how you can end up with 202 views yet have 500 comments, as the comments update in real-time, while view counts update every few hours or so.

Now, the Statistics & Data tab shows honors for the video (updated pretty close to real-time) and if you scroll down, “Sites linking to the video” shows websites that embed my video (like mine), and how many times someone clicks within that video and gets taken to YouTube.   It only counts those clicks, but gives you a general idea of what sites are embedding a video.   It only shows the top 5 I think, and it takes a little while to update as well.

Total Video Views

The views from embedded videos on websites (like mine) ALSO COUNT IN TOTAL VIDEO VIEWS on YouTube.   So every time you watch my video on my website you are contributing to the total video view count for that video on YouTube, so don’t worry, your views are being counted whether you watch the video here or over at YouTube.

But, Honors Don’t Count

But, if you watch a video on my website, vs. watching it on YouTube, your views DO NOT count towards contributing to my honors.   Honors are what help my videos get pushed to the most viewed pages.

Let me give you an example.

I just took a snapshot from the most viewed page on YouTube for today and you’ll notice the #1 video “Ghost House Underground” has 390,918 views yet the #4 video “John Cleese on Sarah Palin” has 424,269 views.

How can this be??

It’s because a large number of his views are coming from outside of YouTube.   You can see that by clicking on the Statistics & Data tab that I mentioned and scrolling down to the bottom.

As you can see, a bunch of websites are embedding his video and he got a bunch of clicks from them.   So about 200,000 views are coming from views outside of YouTube, which is contributing to his overall view count, but since those 200,000 views are coming from outside of YouTube, his video is only ranked #4 as they don’t contribute to his honor ranking for the day.
Why do they not count?
Views from outside of YouTube no longer contribute to the honors because people were abusing the system.   People would embed their video 200 times on their MySpace page and then tell people to click on their page, thus generating 200 views per person clicking.   That happened all the time, but I think what made YouTube change their policy was the Avril Lavigne incident.
Fans of Avril Lavigne set up a website that embedded her video and then told fans of hers to load this page and let it run all day (as it would automatically reload the video every minute or so)… as a result, her video ran to #1 with over 104 MILLION views.. thus displacing the #1 video of that guy dancing.. and people at YouTube got upset as this was obvious manipulation.   Her video still ranks #1 as YouTube didn’t catch it in time (most viewed videos on YouTube can be found here), but the result is that views no longer count towards honors on YouTube if those views come from external websites.
So, due to abuse of the system, views from external websites no longer contribute to the honors of a video, but they still count towards the overall view count.
This went into effect a few months ago.
Should we then go to YouTube to watch your videos?
No… just keep doing what you are doing.   My videos seem to do pretty well without you guys having to go to YouTube to watch the videos there.   The numbers at YouTube are so staggering as it is, that my videos make it to the most viewed pages every time I upload one anyway.   I would prefer to have you all just hang out here and have fun as you currently do.
So, Fianchetto’s Ghost, I hope I answered your question and for the rest of you, I hope you found it informative.

Comments/DISQUS help? Click here.

Allowed HTMLDISQUS Status

Leave a Reply

55 Responses to Statistics on YouTube, View Counts and Honors

  1. Youtube is popular media on web. Many people using Youtube Via Mobile,So only it became a high position in web, and every one know what is YouTube.Thanks for this information.

  2. YouTube you have to do everything you can to not get lost in the shuffle. On top of that, you have to deal with videos that are nowhere near as good as yours becoming overnight sensations.

  3. Optimization is also the best way to get YouTube views. These video clips also adhere to the identical guidelines as other WebPages have. This is because YouTube is also a web site. If you think that only exciting and eye-catching name can get you more YouTube opinions then you are incorrect. You can take help of market analysis to get more and more challenging headings for your videos.

  4. Favourable reviews play a very important role in getting the viewers to watch your videos. Try to get as many favourable reviews of your videos as possible. There are many ways of getting favourable reviews, including paying writers to write reviews.

  5. @ evanowen98248 This is a test to make sure the entity &‌#64; won’t trigger off the DISQUS mentions process.

  6. Matthew says:

    Thanks you! I’m AwwShizzyNizzy and I was curious about this

  7. @mhazel This is a test to see if I can “mention” you from a comment at another site (I don’t know if cross-site mentions work). If you get this by E-mail, please go to, click TECH in the banner menu, scroll down to the last blog (which is an obsolete blog I use for testing) and post a reply to this comment mentioning me. Thanks.

  8. Test area 2.

    Begin the blockquote test.

    Now is the time for all good men.

    End of the blockquote test.

  9. Camp Kohler - Sacto CA says:

    @ This was a test to see if an at sign typed as an HTML entity would trigger the DISQUS mention process. It doesn’t.

  10. manniac says:

    Even one and a half years later your article was still very helpful. Thanks! You’re best! :D

  11. Chemikal says:

    I finally got to read this. And `em I glad!
    First of all, your such a geek, lol! :))
    Secondly, I think your just great for putting in the time and patience to write and edit this post.
    I would have never made a tutorial type explanation to answer someone’s question… but it seems you did, and that just fills me with respect for you. (where do you get your energy from?)
    Maximum best,

  12. beffle says:

    Hi Marina, could you please explain where the idiom “sea change” originated. Thanks.

  13. Wow… you sure know your stuff.

  14. annuddermale says:

    clearly & lucidly stated…i am more impressed with you now than ever before…

    i will be sure to view your vids at least once on your YouTube channel before commenting here…

    cooks, clear-thinker, lovely…dang!

  15. pedantickarl says:

    WoW Marina!!!. That was an excellent writeup. You are a fantastic writer. I loved your total presentation consisting of great clarity and style packed with great information. You are a thousand times better than lots of technical writers. Excellent writing. I loved reading all of the details as I am analytically oriented. :smile:

    Thank you for explaining the displacement of judsonlaipply’s “Evolution of Dance”. I had always want to know what happened to that video’s position.

    By the way Marina, the only reason that I became a subscriber is because of your great comments and terrific writing with a personal touch like that above. Now, that is what I find very sexy.

    I have been watching your lessons since March 2007, but I did not become a subscriber until early 2008 after reading some of your great comments that reflected your personal touch. You also did a few other nice things which I’ll talk about at another time.

    I hope you realize that you have made a great impact on some of us outside of your usual video lessons. :smile:

  16. thoughtonfire says:

    Avril only has 1 video up there, and Marina has 300+ :razz:

  17. tryant says:

    So when You beat the Avril record *without* cheating,,then,,You have honestly/fairly conquered your chosen world, if We view Your vids on Youtube and comment here that would be far and away more honest and give You a better chance of doing it someday. I have a shortcut to here and to Your Youtube site,might start viewing at both!


  18. originalistrick says:

    Marina, I’m still going to view your vids on YT if if will help your stats in any way. That would help you in terms of potential advertising revenue, would it not? Love you lots.

  19. bobsully says:

    Thanks Marina. I like hitting your website much more than going to YouTube.

  20. animalntaz says:

    All this technical babble is too confusing for me to care for. All I care about is faster downloads and not having to jump to her YouTube channel as an only way to watch her videos.

  21. leonard says:

    you are the prettiest smarted women :wink: and then some or is it sum :?:

  22. wetsuit5 says:

    That’s very interesting.
    Never pushed that stats button before.

    Guess Big Brother has an accountant everywhere.

  23. I thought I was in a tax seminar reading all this :mrgreen:
    If I am understanding correctly, this page only
    deals with counting view statistics, and doesn’t
    incorporate the rating system. Marina had a
    star rating system on her site (here) which was
    removed awhile back, as those ratings did not
    get reflected back to YouTube (it’s been some
    time ago, so my memory may be fuzzy).
    Since rating her videos is a part of my routine,
    I go to YouTube and watch it there, first, and vote.
    I don’t know if this affects honors, or anything;
    I just vote so Marina gets some feedback to
    evaluate how well a particular video is doing.
    I never really thought a lot about the view counting
    as much as the rating system, but I saw no
    mention of it here. Does rating a video have any effect?
    What are those effects?…
    Note to Marina….answering one question just breeds
    ten new questions – LOL! XoxO :smile:

  24. seesixcm6 says:

    Thank you for this explanation and yes, I did find it informative. I usually watch you on YouTube first, because their low-resolution videos start right away. I have to wait a few seconds before your videos start on this site. I also like that you let us put “smileys” in comments, here. :smile:

  25. James says:

    SPELLING MISTAKE: Avril Levinge..

    It should be Avril Lavinge

    Sorry Marina..

  26. Dezdkado says:

    Well I’ll just have to make sure to watch twice… once in each location.

    • Dezdkado says:

      Hmm… I’m beginning to see some wisdom amid the policy of ignoring negativity… not engaging negative folks keeps a fight from brewing and doesn’t drag you down… and not blocking them or discouraging their freedom to comment helps ratings in the long run. It’s not just polite, it’s savvy policy.

  27. Dear Marina,

    Yes, thoroughly, and thank you very much – When I saw no links, I became alarmed that something might be wrong. Thank you very much for clearing things up, and keep up the terriffic work!


    Hey mijj, How about stewed crow this time?

  28. bsomebody says:

    I still like watching the vids on YT. I cannot get full screen from the web page. I generally go to M’s YT channel, so I can get more Marina for the buck. :razz:

  29. presumably, the advertisers aren’t bothered about the difference in detail between tallying onsite and offsite viewing.

  30. Che Volay says:

    How come when I subscribed to HFW I got double subscriptions. I keep unsubscribing then resubscribing and still get a double subscription?????

  31. kaibanator says:

    Hey Marina, I have a email based question for you. (I hope this doesn’t sound too confusing) :(

    Recently I have changed my email address on my profile on this website. So I now get emails showing comments from people that had replied to my post to my new email address (which is fine).

    However, I still get the video lesson/articles emails sent to my old email account, and as of the 1st or 2nd of November, I won’t be able to use that email account anymore. :(

    I was wondering, if there is anyway I can get the ‘video lesson/articles’ emails sent to my new email address that is now set on my profile? Because I still want to get the emails :smile:

  32. Che Volay says:

    Marina, Amazing you can think so clear so early in the morning :shock:
    Passame tu cafe :cool:

  33. Che Volay says:

    Good Morning cufan :grin:

  34. cufan71 says:

    :mrgreen: First!

    • cufan71 says:

      Thanks Marina for the info! Several my questions were answered!
      I’d rather watch and comment on your videos here! But I always give them 5 stars on YouTube! :cool:

These are facebook comments below.


Not your typical philologist! Putting the LOL in PhiLOLogy :-)