Want to Wipe Your Streaming History on Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, and Amazon? Here’s How

simpson33/iStock via Getty Images
simpson33/iStock via Getty Images

Whether you've spent 12 straight hours watching Friends, re-watched all of The Office for the fifth time, or gotten embarrassingly into baking shows, you may not want a permanent record of your streaming history. All major streaming platforms—including Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and YouTube—keep track of every show, movie, and video you watch. That's the reason you get bombarded with suggestions of serial killers documentaries after watching the first two minutes of a true crime show. If you find this feature more annoying than helpful—or if you would just like to hide a specific part of your viewing history—nearly every streaming service offers a way to do that.

Thrillist compiled a round-up of the simplest ways to hide what you watch online. According to them, Netflix doesn't just let you wipe your viewing history, but it allows you to select certain shows and movies to hide. If you head to netflix.com/WiViewingActivity, you'll see a chronological list of every piece of content you've watched through the service. If you watched The Conjuring (2013) recently but aren't interested in recommendations of more horror movies, you can select the "cancel" icon to the right of the title. Do the same for certain titles you'd like to erase from your profile, or for all of them by clicking "Hide All" at the bottom of the page.

YouTube also makes it easy to edit your history. Just click the "X" next to each video listed on youtube.com/feed/history to hide it, or select "Clear All Watch History" from the column on the right side of the page. The "Pause Watch History" is YouTube's equivalent of incognito mode in your browser, and it allows you to surf videos without worrying about messing with the algorithm.

Hulu's viewing history management feature is similar to the services listed above. Visit secure.hulu.com/account, go to your name in the top right corner of the page, select “History” and edit your history from there.

Amazon makes this process slightly more annoying for users, according to Cordcutters. You can view your Amazon Prime Video viewing history by going to the "Improve Your Recommendations" page here, and you can delete entries individually by selecting, "Remove This From Watched Videos," but there's no way to wipe your history all at once. Amazon also gives you to the option to tick a "Don't Use for Recommendations" box next to each title if you want to remove an item from the algorithm without hiding it completely.

Many subscribers don't do much on their favorite streaming platforms beyond hitting "Play" and "Yes, I'm still watching." But if you know what features are available to you, you can tweak your account to make a streaming experience that's tailored to you. Here are some ingenious Netflix hacks you may not be taking advantage of.

[h/t Thrillist]

How Much Are You Spending on Streaming Services? This Handy Calculator Can Tell You

LightFieldStudios/iStock via Getty Images
LightFieldStudios/iStock via Getty Images

With the recent debut of both Disney+ and Apple TV+, not to mention upcoming launches for HBO Max, NBC’s Peacock, and more, streaming services are officially coming for cable television’s throne—and might sneakily empty your bank account while they're at it.

While a monthly fee of $10 to $15 seems easy enough to justify if you’re willing to sacrifice a burrito bowl or fancy cocktail once a month, the little voice in the back of your head is probably whispering, “but it still adds up.” To find out just how much, MarketWatch created a calculator that will not only tell you how much you’re spending on streaming services every month; it’ll also add up the lifetime cost of all those entertainment expenses.

The calculator covers Netflix, CBS All Access, Hulu, Amazon Prime, Sling TV, Disney+, Apple TV+, and YouTube TV, and it also includes a whole host of add-ons that you might not even have realized were available. Through Amazon Prime, for example, you can subscribe to HBO, Showtime, and other premium channels—but there are also more niche options like Hallmark Movies Now and NickHits (with iCarly, The Fairly OddParents, and other Nickelodeon classics).

As you check off services and add-ons, you’ll see your monthly bill on the right side of the total box, and the lifetime cost—which accounts for 50 years of streaming, adjusted for inflation—will balloon before your eyes on the left side. Below that, there’s an even larger number labeled as the lifetime “true” cost, which estimates how much you would’ve made if you had invested that money instead.

For example: If you sign up for basic monthly subscriptions to Netflix and Disney+ for $9 and $7, respectively, your lifetime cost totals around $16,200. However, if you had opted to invest that money, the 50-year prediction sees you walking away with almost $74,000.

Having said that, it’s understandably hard to look that far into the future, especially when Disney+ is tempting you with the Lizzie McGuire series, Star Wars spinoff The Mandalorian, and practically every beloved animated Disney movie from your childhood.

[h/t MarketWatch]

Hallmark Released Some Adorable Harry Potter Ornaments—Just In Time for Christmas

Amazon
Amazon

Even if you never received your letter of acceptance to Hogwarts on your 11th birthday, you can still add some magic to your Christmas tree this year with some Harry Potter Christmas ornaments from Hallmark. These pieces have more of a minimalist style than Hallmark's other Potter releases, which are modeled to look identical to the characters' movie counterparts. But with that simplicity comes a unique charm that is sure to be popular with Potterheads.

Shoppers can look for seven different ornaments, which include Harry, Ron Weasley, and Hermione Granger in mid-flight, as well as Hedwig, the Sorting Hat, Dobby, and the Hogwarts Crest. Each one comes with a hanger, so is ready to be put on your Christmas tree as soon as its out of the packaging. You can find each one for $9 on Amazon—though be forewarned that Harry is currently out of stock (but you can find an equally adorable replacement Potter for $8).

If you can’t get enough wizarding gifts this holiday season, then check out our Harry Potter gift guide, which includes everything from magical cookbooks to chess sets.

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