Wasn’t technology supposed to make our lives easier?
When I received my new phone number and email, I dutifully forwarded both to everyone I needed to and thought I was done. That’s when the fun started–first with Apple, then with Google.
Apple uses your email to sync information across devices–phone, laptop, tablet–in iCloud. The problem, however, is that when you get a new email address you need to keep the old address alive long enough to get into the iCloud system and update with the new one. If you don’t, iCloud won’t let you in and you’ll spend a week trying to find a work-around (like I did), and then two more days on the phone with Apple support to fix it (ditto).
That was cakewalk compared to my google problem.
Google provides the option of a two-step verification system to access your google account(s). This means that when you sign in to google, your password triggers the delivery of a verification code sent via text message to your phone, which you have to also provide before you finally get access to your account.
And of course I didn’t think of changing my phone number in my google account first before signing out. And of course I then couldn’t access my google accounts (mail, youtube) because the verification code was being sent to my now defunct phone number. And of course google made me jump through hoops in their “Account Recovery” system by asking questions which no-one could possibly answer (like the month and year of when you opened your account–like who remembers?), and of course sent me a reject email a week later and told me to try again, which I did, with the same information which was followed by the same reject email, until I seriously contemplated travelling to the nearest google office to beat the living shit out of someone.
Now, losing my gmail was no hardship. What really upset me was losing access to my youtube account. All my personal movies are uploaded there and to deny me access was damn near machiavellian. But alas, I had a brain fart and found a solution.
I checked my phone and, inexplicably, I was signed into youtube! Why I don’t know; I never watch youtube movies on my phone but there I was–cellular me all signed in, legal as you please.
It was then I decided to kick google’s machiavellian ass to the curb. I deleted every video from my youtube account (I have the originals in iMovie) and deleted my gmail account.
I have been fully ungoogled. (Well, mostly. While I deleted all of my movies from youtube, I wasn’t successful in deleting the youtube account itself. So Buddy the dog’s sweet little face it still out there in youtube land, attached to a channel with no videos. This grates on my nerves, but not as much as having my entire personal movie library on lockdown.) I use Duck Duck Go as my search engine and uploaded my movies directly to facebook. The former doesn’t track its users or torture them with useless data recovery forms and the latter doesn’t hold your movies hostage.
I feel freer already.