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Why YouTube Video Views Get Stuck At 301
Oct 30, 2012Web and InternetComments (2)
Note: YouTube has officially done away with this "feature" of YouTube. See the Twitter post explaining their change. The rest of the post will be kept for historical reasons.


The reason YouTube video views get stuck around 301 views has been explained fairly well in this 9 minute YouTube video. In case you don't want to watch a video, here are the basic points:

  • When a video has less than or equal to 300 views, YouTube counts each view normally, with low validity checking. These videos are usually low-impact videos intended for small audiences like family and friends, so making sure views are legitimate isn't super important.

  • When the number of views is greater than 300, YouTube counts these views through a different pipeline that does more verification. YouTube puts more emphasis on ensuring the views being accrued are legitimate at this stage. Depending on the nature of the views, their sources, and if there are any signs of tampering, it may take some time for YouTube to "green light" the video to start racking up more views.

  • The reason views count up to 301 and not 300 is due to the logic of the program. When a view is counted and the current view count sits at 300, it is still less than or equal to 300, and thus another view is counted, leaving the counter at 301. Sometimes views will stick at 302 or 303, and this is caused by multiple servers updating simultaneously (see below).

  • YouTube content is mirrored across servers around the world, so that users have quicker access to data. Due to this, YouTube must aggregate the view counts from all the various servers. Views are also usually updated in batches instead of individually.

  • When a user only views a video for a few seconds, the view may be not counted. If this occurs often, YouTube may identify the video as possibly having a misleading title or thumbnail, which could cause further delays in giving the video a "green light".
Comments (2)
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Nick Vogt   Aug 06, 2015
Good catch. I have updated it.
Usb Threedotzero   Aug 06, 2015
Dude.. It changed finally