One thing that peeked my interest amongst the forthcoming changes to google photos (google drive & gmail) was not that they are intending to charge for storage (which is what a lot of current hype is about) it was a paragraphs in their November explanation of the changes. Gmail, Google photos and other google tools are being combined into s sinle google Drive Limit of 15 GB (for free) and after that storage will be charged.
When you have been over your storage quota for 2 years, your content in Gmail, Google Drive (including Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, Drawings, Forms and Jamboard files) and Google Photos may be deleted.
Another section make the same claim about inactive gmail accounts!
There is not mention of any warnings, just they now have the right to choose to start deleting inactive accounts and services, presumably without notice. Clearly its aim is to clean up storage once users are dead, or thy choose to stop using the services (including forgetting their password, etc). Which seems perfectly reasonable
The downside here is for your digital immortality (or not). Do you expect your personal data in the cloud to be accessible after you are dead?
Probably in most cases you might be glad this is the case, all those embarrassing photos to vanish. However there can easily be situations with family photos (which tend to become precious over time) need to be preserved. Its probably time to think about putting those important photos that form family memories into a separate album that gets share amongst your family members and encourage them to keep copies.
No need to panic this policy will only be started on June 1st this year. The 2 years of in activity probably begin then.
I don't think this is a google #FAIL, I just think they hopt it will get through without much fussy (compared with charging for photo storage after claiming it was the perfect place to store all your family photos - did they actually say for free?)