Do you have an old YouTube account that you hardly accessed for years? What we’re talking about here is the YouTube account you opened before May 2009.
It was when you created a YouTube account with just a username and password.
After May 2009, you needed a Gmail account (whether new or existing) to create a YouTube account.
An account opened before May 2009 used to be called a Legacy YouTube account. Even after the May 2009 requirement, YouTube allowed users to access the legacy account until January 11, 2011.
After that, it became mandatory for all Youtube accounts to be linked to a Google account (Gmail).
Claiming Your Legacy (Pre-Google) YouTube Account
Say you visited the legacy channel recently and found that the videos you uploaded there are doing well. There is a good increase in subscribers and your videos are garnering thousands of views. You feel encouraged and want to rebuild the channel.
Maybe you even want to monetize the channel leveraging on the subscriber count and so on.
What about this scenario? You’ve uploaded stuff that you’re embarrassed about now. Maybe you uploaded something ‘silly’ when you were still wet behind your ears. You now want to access the channel, so that you can delete the ’embarrassing’ videos or delete the channel altogether.
So, how do you claim your legacy account? In other words, how do you recover your Youtube account with your user name?
You try to log in to your legacy channel Youtube channel.
YourTube account login doesn’t ask for your username. Instead, it asks for your email or phone number.
Yes, you need a Google account to sign in to a YouTube channel. Even if you remember the email associated with the old legacy account, you can’t still log in.
You wonder if you can recover your old account. What happened to your old account? Was it deleted by YouTube?
No, YouTube didn’t delete your old account. If you’ve not logged into your pre-Google YouTube account since 2011, be informed that your account was switched to a brand account.
How to Access Your Converted YouTube Brand Account?
To access the brand account, you would need to link it to a Gmail account.
Here are the steps on how to do it.
First, you need to log in to the Gmail account you want to link your pre-2009 YouTube account. Open a new Gmail account if you don’t already have one.
Then visit the YouTube Gaia Link.
This is the page where you claim your old account (pre-Google) and link to your Gmail account.
What happens here is you can claim the Brand Account that Google had converted your pre-2009 username account (legacy account) into. Then link it to a Gmail account.
Simply enter the username and password of your old account and hit the Claim Channel button.
It’s important that you have your password. If you don’t have your password or enter an incorrect one, you can’t claim your channel.
But isn’t there a password recovery or reset option if you’ve forgotten your password?
No Password, No Go
Sadly, the answer is a BIG NO! If you know your username but don’t know your password, then you can’t claim your pre-2009 YouTube channel. You can’t recover your YouTube account with only your username.
YouTube not providing you with password recovery or reset options for your pre-2009 channel may seem unfair.
However, there’s a good reason for it. Anyone who knows your username can claim your channel as his or hers just by giving the excuse that he or she has forgotten the password.
He will then be able to reset his password and claim the channel as his.
To prevent such abuse, YouTube has made it mandatory for you to know the password of your old Channel to prevent ‘theft’ of your channel. Let’s repeat that. It’s mandatory to know the password even if you’re the true owner of the channel.
What if you write in an appeal to YouTube to allow you to recover your password or reset it? Will they assist?
No, they won’t.
YouTube clearly states that without your password you can’t claim your pre-2009 YouTube channel.
What’s the Solution?
The situation seems helpless, doesn’t it? But do not give up hope. If you badly want to claim the channel, try recalling the password you may have used.
Admittedly, this is not an easy task. Alternatively, try recalling if you may have written the password somewhere in a notebook.
No luck? Was there a common password you used when logging into any type of account years back? Why not try your luck with the password?
Only the YouTube system knows your password. It’s not going to give it away, even if you’re the true owner of the channel.
But then your channel will always be available to be claimed. There’s no expiry date for it. That’s your consolation. Meanwhile, let your baby be safe with YouTube. Better than being kidnapped by someone else.
Let’s hope one day you may remember or find your channel password and be able to recover your pre-Google YouTube account with your username.