YouTubers bring out the big guns in response to Google+ madness

YouTubers bring out the big guns in response to Google+ madness
Plus comments equals minus YouTube users

You'd think they'd be grateful. You'd think that after years of the YouTube comment section being home to literally the worst people in the world, they might like the fact that Google's trying to clean up the shame that is the sexist, racist and generally abusive commentary that accompanies most uploaded videos.

But no. Something even worse and more unwelcome than YouTube commenters has moved in – Google+.

Google pushed out a massive change to its YouTube service this week, which required everyone to have a Google+ account in order to leave comments below clips. The idea being that when linked in some way to a real-life name and Gmail account, people might behave better in order to maintain their own personal Google SEO status.

A whole heap of moderation tools were also launched, designed so the viral sensations and YouTube celebrities would have more control over what words appear beneath their vids.

It all sounds so very good on paper. But in reality no one liked it. Users hate Google+ and they hate being made to use it. YouTube channel admins are finding comments flagged as spam and the wrong content floating to the top and are unable to change things. Everyone is angry.

It's business as usual, then.

Freak this

It's quite tough finding comments on YouTube relating to the new system that don't have at least two f-words in them. Beneath (NSFW) protest song My Thoughts on Google+, which has picked up well over one million views in a week of being online, you can see a visual protest kicking off.

People are posting ASCII art images of a man called Bob and a tank. It's a sort of spam protest, although we're not sure it's working, as the appearance of Bob himself is annoying the few non-angry commenters. As for actual meaningful comment, Shane Stevens, using his real G+ name there, asked: "Does anyone else get the feeling that all this crap is the dying of the generation and that it will give birth to something new? If that is the case than we should have a rally and let this generation go out with a bang."

We're not sure what he means by a rally, but he may have a point. Google and its increasingly ad-focused methods and enforced G+ adoption is starting to seriously annoy people. Maybe Marissa Mayer, who left to head up Yahoo, was the company's only truly non-evil person?

Where's the fun at?

Over on Reddit, some users were confused about why the changes needed to be made in the first place.

Sensible adult user Rumpumpumpum questioned where the badness actually is, asking: "I sub to a bunch of DIY, hobby, and tech review channels on YouTube and I just don't see the cesspool that people complain so much about. To the contrary I see micro-communities of people with the same interests who help each other with advice and tips. Maybe I'm looking in the wrong places on YouTube. Where is the cesspool?"

Cesspool expert internetalterego helped him out: "The cesspool appears in the most unexpected places. Often, you'll watch something as benign as a cute cat video, and then scroll down expecting the top comment to be 'Aaaawwwww' - but instead it will be a 200 word rant on racial diversity and human evolution in response to some white supremacist troll. Usually it will take about three or four comments to go from a friendly discussion about the cuteness of cats to a hostile, inarticulate argument about world history and how Hitler wasn't so bad when you really think about it."

Reddit reader Nerdcubed also explained how the changes are broken for channel admins too, explaining: "...comments are ranked higher if they have more replies, no longer just thumbs. These combined mean that when person A decides to post a dodgy link persons B - Z will reply saying 'dodgy link', 'spam', or whatever. This means that the spam GETS RANKED HIGHER."

Hence even the new generation of YouTube stars who exist to record their wacky faces saying whatever comes into their pretty young heads disabling comments altogether.

Mein Gott!

And Google's perhaps even opening users up to viruses by now allowing readers to post links in comments. Marketing Land user Nunya is outraged, saying: "...the integration has changed YouTube comments from mildly irritating to literally DANGEROUS. Virus and keylogger links, pornography, elaborate ASCII art of swastikas and genitalia, vitriolic and hateful comments... the last few days have seen all of this. It is now entirely possible to post all of 'Mein Kampf' in comments with a few key strokes."

Where have you seen Mein Kampf, Nunya? It's a buck on Kindle so a freebie would be handy, thanks.

Over on the Guardian, user Foom suggested that the uproar is simply about us lot fearing change. Foom suggests: "If YouTube comments changed to incorporate gold coins spat out from underneath the monitor with every vowel you type there would be angry hordes of consonant fanciers threatening to burn Google to the ground within an hour. In general, people are dicks. People on the internet doubly so."

Couldn't agree more, we type, here, on the internet.

We'll give the last word to Telegraph commenter Wiggymaster, who claims to have previously switched to Gmail from Microsoft in a sulk as he felt he could " Microsoft as far as they could be shot out of a canon with flash powder." That trust is now gone, with Wiggy saying: "[Google's mantra] 'Don't be evil' has turned into 'don't lose to Facebook'. Screw Google, screw Facebook, and screw their war against privacy."