Netflix Is Wiping Out All Of Its User Reviews Next Month

Say goodbye to Netflix user reviews, because the streaming service has announced that it will obliterate all of them from the site next month. Read more about Netflix's latest change below.

Bad news for anyone who still used Netflix as a hub for writing all of their movie-related opinions. CNET reports that as of July 30, users will no longer be able to use the desktop-only function that allows them to write reviews of TV shows and movies on the site. And by mid-August, Netflix will be deleting every user review from the site forever.

Last year, Netflix courted controversy by changing its previous star rating system to a binary thumbs up or thumbs down model, which leaves no room for nuance or subtlety when rating a particular film or TV show. That functionality, as pointless as it may seem, will remain in place.

I had completely forgotten that Netflix even had a space for user reviews. But if you've been using that function as a diary of your movie-watching reactions over the past few years instead of switching to a site like Letterboxd, now's the time to copy all of that information and save it elsewhere before it gets zapped from the Internet for good.

User reviews

"This feature is only offered on the website and has seen declining usage over time," said Netflix spokesperson Smita Saran said. She revealed that the company has "notified members who have used the feature recently", so hopefully no one is blindsided by the mass deletions that are coming in a few weeks.

I spent a summer writing reviews and providing ratings on a Facebook movies app while I was at an especially useless internship, only to later discover that they'd all eventually been erased. There was no warning in that case, so at least there's still a chance for these Netflix users to retrieve their info.

The Netflix user ratings only ever appeared on the website, and were not visible through any of the product's apps. The exact numbers aren't available to me, but I have to imagine that a huge majority of customers access Netflix through apps on their TVs or video game consoles. And I doubt that a significant portion of the desktop Netflix users ever utilized those reviews as a tool to decide whether or not to watch a particular piece of media. It's kind of sad to destroy a forgotten little corner like this, but somebody was probably getting paid to oversee and/or administrate those reviews, and with declining usage, it must no longer be worth it to keep that section up and running.