This is what I get when I try to login to YouTube:
It’s a horrible stain on my otherwise pristine online reputation (yes, I said “pristine”) — I am, at least with my primary gmail address, irrevocably banned from logging into YouTube.
I say it this way because in truth, they only banned my email address so nothing prevents me from using another one to login. But if you’re an avid Google products user like me, you know what that means, logging out of everything and logging back in with the other email address. It’s kind of a pain. As such, I tend not to like, dislike or comment on anything on YouTube. Also, consequently, anytime a video delivers the message “you must be logged in to view this video” I tend to skip it. Anytime you need to be logged in to prove you are of age to view a video, again, I skip it.
YouTube, you break my heart!
I will explain. You see, in 2007, one of my all-time favorite music stars, Garth Brooks, temporarily came out of retirement to do five concerts at Staples Center and raise money for the victims of recent fires in Malibu. And let’s be brutally honest; the charitable component was lovely but of no interest to me because Brooks had been retired for some time at this point. I believed that I would never get to see my favorite singer in concert ever (this was before he established his Vegas show and long, long before he came out of retirement to tour as he is now). This was my chance. I was positively ebullient.
Social media was really in it’s infancy in 2007. There was no mal intent when I posted a video of Garth Brooks singing “Working for a Living” with special guest Huey Lewis from the concert. I was just EXCITED. I HAD BEEN THERE. I HAD SEEN GARTH. It wasn’t piracy, it was bragging.
Even though Brooks has since come around on social, having recently joined Twitter and Instagram, he and his representation heavily police what video content of him gets shared. His music isn’t even available on iTunes or Spotify. So when I posted my little video, it was taken down almost immediately and soon after, I found I’d been banned from YouTube.
Yes, I’ve appealed the decision. I’ve even had friends who work for Google look into it. There is nothing to be done. There isn’t someone to hear me out — their decisions are final and ever lasting. In any case, Garth remains one of my all-time favorite recording artists and being blacklisted from YouTube no longer angers me; it mostly amuses me. Frankly, it’s pretty absurd when you think about it. With all the illegal stuff that goes up online, I get busted for a 30 second fan video taken from the top level of a giant arena during a charity concert.
So now you know my dark secret. I am a YouTube criminal. Oh well.