Google announced today that you can now associate your YouTube account with your Google+ account. In other words, if you go by your real name on Google+, you can now make that your identity on YouTube as well.
Luckily, to avoid upsetting more users by forcing Google+ upon them, Google has made the option available to continue using your old name.
“One Google-wide identity was something that proved popular with new YouTube users when we began offering it in March, so we are now extending it to existing users,” says software engineer John Fisher. “This is your identity, so you’re in the driver’s seat. First off, your name. If you are currently YouTube user joeysam87, you can now appear as Joey Samson, the full name from your Google+ profile (with an actual space in the middle!), along with any photo you uploaded.”
Users can review their past YouTube activity before making the change. This way, you can go back and delete any comments or playlists that might embarrass you as a real person.
“This will give you more options for how your videos are seen and discovered on YouTube,” says Fisher. “However, we realize that using your full name isn’t for everyone. Maybe people know you by your YouTube username. Perhaps you don’t want your name publicly associated with your channel. To continue using your YouTube username, just click ‘I don’t want to use my full name’ when you see the prompt.”
Google says users will be able to start using this user name in more products in the coming months. You’ll see the option for YouTube the next time you upload a video or leave a comment.