Friday, January 17, 2014

The Horrors of Linking YouTube and Google+ Accounts

Since I'm not the only person that has been affected by the merger of YouTube and Google+, I thought that I'd share my experience on my blog, and hopefully give some information to help other people that have been dealing with the frustration caused by Google devouring YouTube.

For a while now, I haven't been able to log in to YouTube using Google Chrome, but I could when using Mozilla Firefox. The reason: I have two different Gmail accounts, one for business, and one for my blog. I also have a Google+ profile for this blog, and it's under my pen name, Cassie Carnage. Years ago, I made a YouTube account that was linked to my business Gmail address.

Once I made a blog with Google's Blogger, I made a new Gmail account so that readers and people who wanted their horror books, videos etc. featured on my blog could contact me. After that, I found that I couldn't log in to YouTube when I was logged in on Chrome with my blogger ID.

I would have to log out of Blogger and Gmail and then I could log in to YouTube. It got to be so frustrating that I just started logging into YouTube with a different browser (this was before you could quickly switch Google accounts in Gmail).

A little over a year ago, Google forced me to make a Google+ profile so that my blog would be considered legitimate to their web crawler programs, and my posts would show up in other people's search results. This was caused by people abusing the keyword SEO function in Google's algorithms and cut back on a lot of garbage, empty content and plagiarism that was occurring on the Internet.

So I made a G+ account, and got to know some really cool people. Then Google bought out YouTube, and you were supposed to be able to sign in onto YouTube with your G+ profile. I couldn't do that. (I still can't when using Chrome, I have to use Mozilla to log in to YouTube with my real G+ profile.)

Yesterday, I was trying to help a friend with testing out the chat box in YouTube while he was airing a live streaming movie. I couldn't sign in to join the chat box. It took me a half hour to figure out why.

Mainly, my old YouTube account could sign on and I could post comments in the chat on his YouTube page, but my account used my real name, and not my pen name. I didn't give YouTube the permission to do that, and yet, it did. Not cool YouTube. Not cool!

Using your full name and/or legal or "real name" on YouTube? Are you insane Google? Have you not seen what commenters do? Oh, wait.... You have. Which is why you changed how comments work so that Google+ profile comments (when videos are posted on G+ and commented on) appear first, so that it looks like people are saying intelligent things about videos.

I don't have a YouTube channel. Just an account so that I could subscribe to video series, like Marble Hornets. But it was treating my account like a channel. Go figure.

Anyways, turns out, when Google turned on the G+ comments on YouTube last November, it created a new G+ profile/page/account for my Gmail and YouTube account. It did this with everyone that had an old account, something that they are now calling YouTube "legacy accounts."

That is why YouTube wouldn't acknowledge my regular G+ account! It was using the accounts it created for me- I had two users on my YouTube account, one was with a backup email address from Yahoo!, the other was with my business Gmail address. So, unbeknownst to me, I had four, (four!) G+ accounts. One is for my blog, which is actually a Google+ page that I don't use but I made it because I had to in order to be acknowledged by Google's web crawlers, one is for my Cassie Carnage G+ profile (the one I like and want to keep), and the other two are fake ones that Google made for me.

I figured this out through trial and error and a ton of researching. Now theoretically you can change your name on YouTube, but that option wasn't available for me. I just couldn't do that. Because you only have 14 days after your G+ profile is linked to your YouTube account. (But I didn't do that. Google did, and he didn't even send me a thank you card... )

Then I learned that I could delete these unwanted accounts in order to log in to YouTube with the G+ account that I actually wanted to use. So I did.

The entire thing was so frustrating! All I wanted to do was help out a friend. Instead I ended up a wild goose chase on the Internets and eventually found the answer to the problem.

If you're anything like me, you either don't want your real name posted for personal reasons, such as privacy, or you are a company and you want your business's branded identity associated with the YouTube account, and not your own name.

Google states that you can switch the name and avatar of your YouTube profile, but they are inextricably linked. There is no way to change it without deleting the G+ profile that it is linked to. If you had a G+ account, and a YouTube account, prior to this change, you have to delete the other G+ profiles that have been made for your YouTube account before you can use your real G+ profile to log in to YouTube.

Discovering this was a bit more complicated than it sounds. According to Google, you can't delete your YouTube Channel if you are using a G+ profile. You have to delete the profile first.

So, to fix this problem, first you must delete the G+ profile associated with your YouTube user ID.

From Google Support:

Delete my Google+ profile

Your Google+ profile will be deleted along with other services and data that depend on your Google+ profile.
  1. Open Google+. Place your cursor in the top left corner for the Google+ main menu. 
  2. Click Settings.
  3. At the bottom of the screen, find the heading Disable Google+. Under the heading, at the end of the phrase "Delete your entire Google profile here", Click "here".

After you do this, log back on to YouTube, and delete your old account, or YouTube channel, that you no longer wish to have associated with your old Gmail address and other identity.

Here's how to delete your YouTube channel:
  1. Make sure you're signed in to the channel you want to delete.
  2. Go to your advanced account settings.
  3. Click Delete channel. You'll be asked to re-enter your sign-in details to confirm that you want to delete your channel.
You may still see thumbnails of your videos on the site as it takes time to update; they will be removed shortly.

After that, you will be able to automatically sign in to YouTube with the G+ account that you wanted to use to begin with. Just like that. You don't even have to make a new account on YouTube. It's already done for you.

I had to jump through several hoops, act like a moron and try to actively kill my mouse in an attempt to get the damn thing to allow me to sign in, prior to realizing that I had to delete everything related to YouTube and start from scratch.

Now, if I had actually had videos uploaded onto the channel, I would've been beyond furious at that point. Thankfully, I did not. I only created it so that I could follow video series on teh YouTubes.

Unfortunately, the delete profile disclaimer states that all G+ accounts that were linked to the G+ account that they made for me would be deleted. I just hope that this doesn't include my Gmail accounts and my legitimate G+ profile, and even my blog here on Blogger (which is owned by Google).

Why am I so freaked out? Well, my blogger email is linked to my business email, which technically means that my pen name email and G+ account are linked to the false G+ profile that Google made. How do I know this? Well, sometimes my business email gets sent to my pen name email address. Yikes!

It takes 24 hours for this to occur. I'll know by 10pm tonight if it just deleted the dead automatic G+ accounts, or if it destroyed my legitimate one as well. If that is the case, everything I have done up to this point with my Gmail addresses, blogger, YouTube, EVERYTHING, will be deleted.  If so, I may just go on a drunken killing spree.

I honestly hope that this is not the case. Because if it is...

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1 comment:

  1. Google doesn't care about efficiency, user consent, or even user friendliness. Their constant 'upgrades' to Gmail and YouTube to make them look more and more like Chrome, irregardless of whether or not people actually even LIKE Chrome, as well as constantly stealing your personal data to sell off, is pretty much proof of this.