The other day, I went to favorite a YouTube video. Gods willing, this should be a simple task. However, this was not the case this time. At first, there was a very minor annoyance. I wasn’t logged in. This makes sense since I have multiple YouTube accounts/channels. I entered in my personal account details, since I wanted to favorite the video in my personal account. Simple enough, right?
Not so. Instead of being redirected back to the video, I was greeted by a splash screen telling me that I had to link my YouTube account to a Google account due to security reasons. I’ve been greeted with a similar splash screen before, but this time it was MANDATORY in order for me to use my account again. I had previously opted out of linking the account to a Google account but apparently I could no longer do so.
Why? Security? How is a Google account more secure than old YouTube accounts? It does not make this apparent. It just seems like Google wants all YouTube users to also be Google users. The number of new users that Google garners from the YouTube brand will surely look good on PowerPoint slides in keynotes. Now, I’m no Google hater. I’m using one of its services to write this post. I do love Gmail. However, it just seems lately like the company is integrating all of its acquired brands in order to compete with Facebook. YouTube could definitely do that for it. Maybe there will be a Google movie called “The Search Engine” in the near future.
In any event, I could not use my YouTube account until I created a new Google account. I knew that my other YouTube account was linked to my main Google account (that I use for Gmail), so I could not link it to that. However, I tried just to make sure that it was going to make this process ridiculous for me. Of course, I couldn’t do it, so I clicked the link to make a new YouTube account and based it on my Yahoo! mail account. The fun, however, did not stop there. I now had to verify my new Google account in order to be able to use YouTube features such as being able to upload videos, but the confirmation email I requested never showed up in my inbox. It was not showing up in my spam folder, either. I tried different ways to receive it, to no avail. It was not in my Yahoo! mail and I had no Gmail account set up for the new Google account I had just created. After much frustration, I gave up and went to bed.
The next day, I tried to send and receive the confirmation email again. In hindsight, the confirmation email may have been trying to go to my new Google account instead of the Yahoo! account linked to it, but I still had not set up Gmail in the new Google account. Was this transition really set up this clumsily by Google? I was about ready to give up and start a new YouTube account and channel when I decided to create ANOTHER new Google account from scratch. This account was not linked to any other service on the Web/cloud.
I connected this new account with my personal YouTube account without much trouble since I had already dug deep in to my personal preferences when trying to get everything to work earlier. The average Joe would have probably been lost. YouTube/Google does inform you that you can change the preferences after you change them, but the average user is never going to remember that or where that option is.
I would not be ranting now if this process was not handled so poorly by Google. Again, I am not a Google hater, but a smooth transition in cases like these are the key to user satisfaction, especially since most of the Web are the Facebook crowd who don’t know an https from a .com. If I had this much trouble with this, just think about what Aunt Therma would go through.
I wish I could remember which video I was trying to favorite.
Daniel W. Webb is a hobby writer currently residing in Columbus, Ohio. His accomplishments in the field to date include being published in the book anthology Boxer Shorts, and editing and writing articles for the technology oriented Web site techNstuff. He released his first book through Lulu.com earlier this year. His love for writing culminated when he first obtained Internet access in 1999 and he hasn’t been able to put down the hobby since. He one day hopes to turn this hobby into a full fledged career. He decided to earn his Associates of Arts in Communications degree as his first steps in obtaining this goal. He can be found on Twitter @webbupdates and on YouTube as Weather Fan Videos. (Feel free to try and favorite his videos there if you dare!)