Bear with me for a bit…long story…long, confusing, bewildering story…
About a couple of weeks ago, I started getting this message on Google Chrome: “Your profile could not be opened correctly. Some features may be unavailable. Please check that the profile exists and you have permission to read and write its contents.”
Of course, I tried to get help for it, and, predictably, all Google had was the usual canned prepackaged solutions a reasonably bright 5-year-old could figure out, none of which was the slightest help to the problem I actually had. One of the greatest aggravations of the electronic age has always been problems that crop out of nowhere for absolutely no explicable reason, but very rarely having the means to deal with them is definitely up there as well.
Now, as you are no doubt aware of, Chrome requires you to create a profile if you want to get anything out of it. That’s perfectly reasonable. The problem is that, as massive corporations are wont to do, Google management decided to branch out a bit. In particular, linking said profile…“synchronizing”, they call it, and the blatant Assassin’s Creed reference should make anyone nervous…to various other big websites. Most notably YouTube.
So, predictably, I got a wee bit reckless…since the problem was with my profile, I tried closing it and starting a new one. I wasn’t expecting any big problems with it; I’ve re-upped stuff lots of times, and despite the weepy “We’re sorry to see you go!” tripe I sometimes have to put up with, I think they know as well as I do that the inherent unreliability of electronic jiggabaheezas makes it something of a necessity.
Well, it turns out there was a problem (not that I’d ever know this from the friggin’ canned prepackaged generic stock boilerplate stupid uninformative unhelpful pathetic useless page of razzafrakkin motherhood statements Chrome showed me before I did the dirty deed)…see, when you cancel a Chrome account, you cancel the accompanying YouTube account as well, and when you cancel a YouTube account, you zap everything that was on it…including all the comments. Even if you immediately get back in the saddle (which I did) everything under the old name is digital toast. Which got me a bit upset as I made a lot of comments, and I put quite a bit of creativity in some of them, and some had become quite popular.
So I thought it for a while.
Okay, the thing you need to understand about YouTube comments is that they’re not all disgusting filth; in fact, from my experience, it’s a small minority. True, YouTube is one of the very few places where it’s still possible to have flame wars, but most of us see them for the pitiful displays of childishness that they are and have the good sense to stay out. Basically, because the site is so huge, its owners leave it to us to police ourselves, and on the whole I think we do a pretty good job. They do a nice job cracking down on spam (not surprisingly, since big corporations aren’t keen on giving away ad space for free), and I’ve seen some really intelligent and funny material.
Still, I had a few things that had lots of upvotes, and it stung a bit to lose them…and then it stung me again that I cared, because I never cared. I mean, c’mon, I’m not some stupid goober, I understand things like mob mentality and pileons and cyberbullying and “acceptable targets”, and that ultimately a lot of people liking or disliking someone is meaningless (as if American Idol didn’t drive that lesson home like 10 times over). It’s a bunch of clicks from strangers, not the Nobel Peace Prize. And yet, there was recognition there, which showed that there were people out there who were interested in what I had to say, or at least considered me a Not Acceptable Target. And now I had to start from scratch.
The good news, of course, was that I copied down most of the really good material to a Wordpad file (and I could actually make much-needed improvements to some of them). It’s funny; the reason I did this in the first place was because my comments kept getting zapped when the videos they were on were pulled and I got tired of retyping stuff.
And that’s when it hit me…on the Web, and YouTube in particular, everything is so ephemeral (look it up!), it just doesn’t make sense to mourn the loss of anything, highly-upvoted or not. Heck, I’m a regular contributor to TVTropes, the Former Soviet Union of websites. If it’s that good, just put it back up, and if some jerk accuses you of ripping yourself up, kindly set said jerk straight. That’s all you gotta do. I mean, this is YouTube, a place with no forums and where you can’t even describe yourself in your profile anymore. It’s practically the definition of superficial.
So I guess this was how I finally made my piece…how having to re-register and start over ultimately wasn’t a bad thing, or a good thing, it’s just a thing…like a great many other things on this here Internet. And you gotta take the good and the bad as they come.
Ah well. At least I hadn’t uploaded any videos yet.
What do you think?
P.S. I know that I need to get out more often, thank you very much.
P.P.S.: I’m “hawaiidkw1” on there. If you saw something from someone with the completely same name except for the “1” part, that was me. (Gods, was it THAT friggin’ hard to figure out, Karinmaid?? )