Last year, Google announced they were going to require everyone signing up for a YouTube username to have a Google account that username would link to. Now, they are going to start requiring users who signed up prior to that date to connect their accounts to Google accounts as well.
This has led some to wonder if those with Google accounts are automatically going to become members of Google’s still unannounced attempt at a social network, Google Me. Similar to Google Buzz, which automatically grandfathered in anyone with a Gmail or Blogger account, this could be a sneaky way to auto-draft subjects into the social network.
Now, Google has given legitimate “security” reasons for the YouTube user name decision. The simplification of a single account system. Reducing spam across the site. But let’s say Google decides to launch Google Me tomorrow. Without your opt-in, someone may be able to search for you, find your Gmail address, read your blog, view your uploaded YouTube videos and more. This could either create a huge privacy backlash, or help usher in immediate commercial buy-in of the masses. Only time will tell.