The Impact of Google Changes on Videos Uploaded Before 2017
Google is currently implementing some security changes that will affect certain old links on Google Drive and YouTube. The changes mean that with effect from July 23, 2021, older Unlisted videos posted on YouTube before January 1, 2017, will become Private. This will happen automatically unless you choose to exempt your videos from this change. All videos uploaded after the said date will remain unaffected by these changes.
The changes will also affect Google Drive, with an impact on the file-sharing links. Once content becomes Unlisted, only the people you provide with the direct link to the content will have access. Besides, the content will no longer appear in search results. This is in response to security updates that generate new YouTube Unlisted links. Google says that shared links have now become part of a unique system that increases security.
The newer links will be more difficult for anyone to access or guess without explicit permission from the owner of the YouTube content. More recent links also require users to log in, tying more activity to specific accounts. This allows for easy tracking of access, which then becomes part of each user’s profile.
Why Are the Changes Happening?
In 2017, Google launched an update that spawns new YouTube Unlisted links on the system. In addition, the update incorporates security enhancements that make the Unlisted video links hard for people to find them if you haven’t shared with them. Currently, Google is making modifications to videos that were posted before the new changes. Because this change may be time-consuming, Google is giving you time to take the necessary action on your business video content on YouTube before the new changes take effect mid this year.
What Do the Changes Mean for Your Business Video Content on YouTube?
The process of converting Unlisted videos to Private is automatic. If you wish your videos to acquire this new status, you don’t need to take any action. Note that once videos become Private, they won’t appear in Public search results. Additionally, YouTube users will not be able to see them in the “Videos” tab on your channel’s homepage.
The Difference Between Private Videos and Unlisted Videos
Once your Unlisted videos become Private after the Google changes take effect, viewership will be affected. What this means for your business is that even the viewers who had the link to the affected videos will no longer be able to watch or share them. Additionally:
- If you had embedded the video in an app or on your website, the link will no longer work.
- You will only be able to share Private videos with up to 50 people or email addresses. Furthermore, everyone you share the link to the video with must have a Google account to access or view it.
- The comments viewers shared when the video was still in its Unlisted status will also become unavailable once the video is Private. However, the comments won’t be deleted. For more comments on the video, you will have to make the video Unlisted or Public.
What Can You Do Given These Changes?
If you wish to stop your videos from becoming Private, the first step is to check whether you have ownership rights to the content. If you do, take one of these four actions:
- You can leave your videos untouched and let the changes take effect starting July 23, 2021. After that, all your Unlisted videos will automatically become Private, only to be seen by you and the viewers you decide to grant access. However, remember that all embedded videos that come Private will no longer work.
- You can choose to opt out of this change. This will keep all your Unlisted videos in their current state. To do this, Google requires you to fill out this form by July 23, 2021. If you have some Unlisted videos that you treat like Public videos, Google recommends opting out of the upcoming changes. This means that if you have embedded them on third-party sites or have shared them on social media, you should not let them be affected by the upcoming changes. By opting out, you will let your existing links continue working as they currently do. However, they will not benefit from the security update.
- The third option is to make your Unlisted Video Public. This will make it visible to anyone on YouTube. Once you change the settings of your Unlisted video to Public:
- Viewers who have the link to the previously Unlisted video will continue to have access to and to view it. It will also become available to any YouTube user.
- The Public video may now appear in Public recommendations and search results.
- The video will retain all the data associated with it, including views and comments.
- Your subscribers will get notifications, and the video will appear in their subscription feed where they see recently uploaded videos.
- Your other option is to re-upload the old video as a new Unlisted video. You may want to retain your videos as Unlisted to benefit from the latest security updates. In this case, you will have to download the video and re-upload it under the Unlisted category in the new system. All the data related to the old original video, like comments and views, won’t affect or accompany the newly uploaded video. Remember to update the link of the embedded video on your website or any app.
July 23, 2021, is fast approaching, and Unlisted videos on YouTube will undergo significant changes. They will automatically become Private, cutting off access to many people who could previously view the videos on your channel or website. If you’d like your old videos to remain unaffected, take the necessary steps before it’s too late.
If you need help with any part of the process, an expert from Treysta Technology Management is here to help. By partnering with us, you will find out how we can help you with all your information technology, not just firewalls, routers, and servers. Contact us today, and let’s discuss how we can help you with all your business IT needs.