Google, the tech giant has planned to change the way it handles link sharing on its Drive and Youtube services. While active users may be able to opt-out, files and movies left on underused or inactive accounts might simply disappear from view.
In 2017, Google released a system update that generates new YouTube unlisted links with various security features, making the content even more difficult to find.
The newer links will also connect more activity to specific accounts and require visitors to log in, allowing access to be tracked and added to each user’s profile.
Users who want to keep sharing their old unlisted videos with public hyperlinks, embeds, and feedback will be able to opt-out on a per-account basis by filling out a form in Youtube’s setting before July 23rd. Re-uploading these videos and leaving them tagged as Unlisted is the only other option.
A similar update is planned for Google Drive. Clicking a link to access cloud-stored files will now include a resource key that determines who does or does not get access.
Once the update has been applied to a file, users who haven’t viewed the file before will need to use a URL containing the resource key to acquire access, whereas those who have viewed the file before or have direct access will not require the resource key to gain access.
If users choose to reupload their unlisted videos, the data associated with the original upload, like views or comments, won’t transfer. Any embedded videos using the old link would also need to be updated to the new video URL, Google said in a blog post.
If this isn’t the case, the user may have to request access to the file or folder through a personal Gmail account, and they will receive an email after July 26th alerting if any files are affected by the change. And if any links in the account are identified as affected, then the user will be able to opt for a ‘security upgrade’ before September 13th.