TikTok unveils a tiny part of its recommendation algorithm

Would TikTok begin to show goodwill? The social network acclaimed by the new generation will reveal part of the criteria for recommending videos exposed in the news feed “for you”. In a blog post titled Find out why a video is recommended for youthe platform explains the procedure for accessing information from its recommendation algorithm.

Feature coming soon

The new function makes it possible to understand the choices that led the algorithm to recommend viewing a video, materializing in the form of an information window. To access the tool, the user viewing a video must go to the Sharing tab, then press the question mark icon, called Why this video. A window will display information about the reasons for the broadcast of the clip currently playing. The tool will be rolled out over the next few weeks, says the social network.

In theory, TikTok’s recommendation algorithm allows for a personalized experience for each app user. There are many criteria for selecting a video by the internal program. For “to make technical details more easily understandable”, ByteDance’s platform will break down influential factors into multiple categories. Will thus be counted “user interactions, such as content viewed, liked or shared, comments posted or searches […] followed accounts or suggested accounts […] recently published content in your region [ou celui] popular in your area”.

Transparency required

“This feature is one of many ways we’re working to bring meaningful transparency to people using our platform, and builds on a number of steps we’ve taken in that direction”, assures TikTok in its press release. In the future, the Chinese social network promises to continue to offer ever greater transparency to its users.

This new function comes after several months of controversy in the United States and Europe. The application, whose parent company ByteDance is based in Beijing, is accused of lacking transparency about the transfer of certain data to China. At the same time, several voices rose across the Atlantic to denounce the failures of the algorithm with adolescents. Violent and unsuitable content may have been broadcast to young audiences.

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