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Google Profiles – How About Fixing the Account Chaos First?

Google Profiles are coming:

A Google Profile is simply how you represent yourself on Google products — it lets you tell others a bit more about who you are and what you’re all about. You control what goes into your Google Profile, sharing as much (or as little) as you’d like.

A centralized identity management shared by the zillion Google services is a good idea – except the GOOG should have fixed the foundation first. Yes, there’s chaos around Google accounts, it’s been like that ever since Google Apps were introduced, and fixing it does not appear to be a high priority at all.

In the early days of Google Apps the only way to sign up was by linking to an existing Google Account, in the format of myname@gmail.com. If you have one of those accounts, there is no way to tell Google that you are now myname@mydomain.com. This means that Google Apps think of your original @gmail and new, @domain identities and two different ones. You can directly access (via URL) your own Calendar, Docs, Groups ..etc. all under your own domain, however, programs that need to access those apps only find the other version, attached to your @gmail.com account. A simple example is trying to save an event from Upcoming.org, Zvents, or any other services: there’s no way to use them with your own domain.

Even the Google Groups is messed up: when I am logged in as myname@mydomain.com, Groups that I am a member of won’t recognize me. I actually have to have duplicate identities created in Google Groups: one to be able to send email (my own domain) and one to be able to access Group’s other features via the browser (@gmail format).

I understand that for quite a while now yo don’t have to link Google Apps to a @gmail.com account, your Google Account can be your own domain itself. This is good news, since a lot less users are affected. It’s also bad news, for the very same reason: less users, less pressure to fix it, so the early Beta users are stuck… Of course we could always just create a new account (which does not have the chaos) and move on, but a domain is an investment, I can’t just throw it away. So for now: Google, you got my domain messed up, and any time you add new bells and whistles to Accounts, I will bring this up, until you fix it.

Update (1/20/08): I think it’s fixed now. :-)

Related posts: Google Operating System, TechCrunch, Mashable! , Scobleizer, bub.blicio.us, Marc’s Voice, ParisLemon, Web Worker Daily, WebMetricsGuru, Brandon LeBlanc and Googlified

Comments

  1. Zoli,

    I think that GProfile is the start in the direction you seek. I too seek it also as I have both GApps and Personal Gmail etc.

    There is however a clear distinction with GApps and Personal Gmail, Gcal etc. This can be seen when trying to use GReader as a GApps user. You just can’t do it. Same with GMaps and others.

    My hope is that the GProfile will eventually have the ability to link the personal and ‘work’ accounts together so that it is just your single online persona with the myriad accounts linked together, maybe even multiple personal accounts.

    TravisP

  2. “Google, you got my domain messed up, and any time you add new bells and whistles to Accounts, I will bring this up, until you fix it.”

    Yeah, you really showed them!

  3. Ted, thanks for reading:-) Indeed I showed them – if you click through to the original article, you definitely see what the problem is. Believe me, they listen, my previous “chaos” post was followed up by a Google VP.

    Funny thing is, I did not have to use profanities and attack language, just be objective and critical. Of course I won’t ever get the mass popularity you enjoy – but hey, I am OK with that, I cater for a different audience.

  4. couldn’t agree more – I too have personal Gmail and Gapps hosted domain and every time I send an email to one of my Google groups it bounces (sure I could remember to change the from address but I shouldn’t really have to remember to)

    please fix it Googleplex

  5. I could not agree more.
    I have even had Small businesses sign-up for the paid service only to find out that they have less access than a “Free” Google user.

    I think it is silly of Google to allow this.

    Oh and while we are Google bashing, their contact information and lack of contact APIs suck.
    -jim

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