Dedicated YouTube users are a fickle bunch, and they don't like having the peanut butter of their video content mixed with the jelly of social networking. The way Google+ comments and YouTube comments intermingle when a video is posted to the social network has been one of the oldest complaints about Google+. Starting today, that won't happen anymore. The following was posted to the official YouTube blog earlier this morning:
With today’s announcement from Google+, you’ll see more changes. The comments you make on YouTube will now appear only on YouTube, not also on Google+. And vice-versa. This starts rolling out today.
This change is part of a larger effort on Google's part to ease its all-fronts approach to Google+. Here's the blog post that the text above is referencing. In particular, Google wants to make it easier to use all Google products without a Google+ profile - the YouTube comment change is just the start.
People have told us that accessing all of their Google stuff with one account makes life a whole lot easier. But we’ve also heard that it doesn’t make sense for your Google+ profile to be your identity in all the other Google products you use.
So in the coming months, a Google Account will be all you’ll need to share content, communicate with contacts, create a YouTube channel and more, all across Google.
The "Google account," often referred to interchangeably with a Gmail address, will be basically de-coupled from Google+, and creating a new Gmail address won't automatically sign you up for Google+. The blog post also says that users who've already created a Google+ profile but no longer wish to use the service while they continue to use other Google tools will be given an option to remove their public profiles.
The changes make sense. When Google+ launched back in 2011, it was clear that the company intended it to be the new hub for user activity across the Googleverse. While the social network is far from dead, it didn't explode the way that Google seemed to want it to, and a considerable number of people just want to ignore it altogether when using services like Hangouts, Google Photos, et cetera. Now as a mea culpa, Google seems to be giving them what they want, cutting the deep ties between Google+ and the various other tools and services it's been associated with before.
Expect similar announcements in the upcoming months.