Wednesday, February 07, 2007

My similiarity is different from yours

Beano is a longtime Netflix Fan friend. He says he's my number one Netflix Friend, at 82% similarity. The problem is, on my Netflix Friends page, I have no friends with that level of similarity. The highest on my end is 77%. I think Netflix is figuring similarity based on different factors for Beano and me. It could be a ratio of ratings in common to movies in common, or something like that. How does Netflix calculate similarity? To find the answer, I plugged the word "similarity" into the Netflix Help Center Quick search:
Q: What does the Friends “% Similarity” number mean?
A: Based on the movies you and your Friends have watched and rated, Netflix calculates the similarity in how you rate, and the movies you select.

The calculation takes into consideration many factors, including the relative number of movies each of you have seen and for which you overlap (for instance, if you’ve rated 20 movies and overlap on them all, that is “more similar” than if you’ve rated 2000 movies and only overlap on 20), as well as the obscurity of the overlapping titles (if you both like the same rare film, that is “more similar” than if you both like a top 10 movie).

Based on these factors, you can accurately compare yourself to each of your Friends. This value will change over time as one or both of you rate more movies, and as the overlapping movies you’ve seen increases.


  1. I think the differences between you and beano may be based on the differences between the number of movies that you have rated. Surely that must have an impact. It works something like this.... 100% of 2,3,4 is in 2,3,4,5 but only 75% of 2,3,4,5 is in 2,3,4.

  2. i know i am slow in commenting on this but i was so surprised to see my name (well my name is ben not beano). well i agree its weird because i have one friend who is only 65% similar but he told me that i am close to 80 on his. by the way you are now at 83% similarity. keep up the blog. long live netflix.