I shared a folder of pictures with someone. I set them as owner. I then deleted the folder. It was deleted for them as well.

Google's Help docs claim that transferring ownership of files actually gives them the files. But this is clearly not the case.

What exactly does being owner mean if it doesn't stop someone else from deleting your files?

And how do I actually transfer files to someone else so I can delete them out of my own Google Drive?

1 Answer 1


According to the Google Help Center:

When you transfer ownership of a folder from yourself to another person, the new owner of the folder becomes an editor of the files in that folder. The original owners of the files remain the owners, and if the original owner deletes a file, it'll be removed from the folder.

If you just transferred ownership of the folder, and not the individual files within, then you were still the owner of the original files within the folder. Thus, if you deleted a file, it would be deleted for everyone.

  • 1
    So how do I transfer files to someone else? I don't want them, they do, and I don't want them eating up my Drive space. Commented Sep 25, 2015 at 10:30
  • 1
    Nevermind I see. They have to download and reupload if they aren't google doc files. Ok thanks for your help Commented Sep 25, 2015 at 10:31
  • I see. So it is possible without download/upload. Thanks Commented Sep 30, 2015 at 21:49
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    Google has removed the ability to assign someone as an owner of your files. Commented Sep 30, 2015 at 21:50

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