YouTube has responded to the widespread criticism surrounding Rewind 2018, the annual wrap-up video that became the site's most disliked video of all time.

The video had been criticised for failing to include some of YouTube's biggest stars, while also favouring the inclusion of people who rose to fame outside of YouTube, such as Will Smith and Trevor Noah.

Within a week of its releas, Rewind 2018 had become the site's least popular video ever and currently has more than 15 million dislikes on the video sharing platform.

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YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki wrote an open letter to YouTube's content creators on Tuesday, 5 February, addressing the controversy and promising that the same mistakes would not be made with Rewind 2019.

"One record we definitely didn't set out to break was the most disliked video on the internet," she wrote. 

"Even at home, my kids told me our 2018 Rewind was 'cringey.' We hear you that it didn't accurately show the year's key moments, nor did it reflect the YouTube you know. We'll do better to tell our story in 2019."

The discontent surrounding Rewind 2018 led to PewDiePie, who runs YouTube's most popular channel, to create his own alternative version titled 'YouTube Rewind 2018 but it's actually good'.

PewDiePie's video attracted more than three-times as many likes as the original and was widely praised among the YouTube community for celebrating the actual videos and people that defined YouTube in 2018.

Stars like Twitch streamer Ninja appeared in YouTube Rewind 2018 (YouTube)

In her letter to content creators, Ms Wojcicki wrote that her three priorities were to support the success of creators, improve communications and engagement, and "live up to our responsibility".

The YouTube CEO also addressed the challenges surrounding Article 13 – a piece of proposed legislation by the European Union that some YouTubers have dubbed the "meme ban".

The legislation could threaten the livelihood of YouTube content creators, Ms Wojcicki said, and implored them to continue raising awareness of the issue. 

"The debate around Article 13 remains ongoing," she wrote. "This could be decided in the next few weeks, so please keep speaking out on this critical issue for all YouTube creators."

An online petition to prevent the so-called "censorship machinery" has already attracted more than 4.5 million signatures.

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