How to share a private YouTube video with anyone by giving permission to their email address


youtube logo with laptops

  • While most YouTube videos you watch are public, you can easily share a private YouTube video with anyone.
  • There are three privacy levels on YouTube: Public, Unlisted, or Private. Unlisted videos are hidden but anyone with the link can watch them, while even the link won’t work if the video is set to Private — you’ll need explicit permission.
  • You’ll need to share a private video with specific users using their email address to give them permission. 
  • To share a private video, edit it in YouTube Studio, and then choose “Share privately” from the list of other features. 
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

When you publish a video to YouTube, most of the time you’ll probably want to mark it as Public, so anyone can see it. But you can also choose to make a video Unlisted, so you need to know the URL to find it, or Private, so only you can see it. 

But even Private videos can be shared — it’s just as little harder to do. 

In order to share a private video, you need to go to YouTube Studio in a web browser (you can’t do this using the mobile app) and choose to share the video with specific users via their email address. 

Only the people you share the video with can see it, so even if they forward the link to someone else, it won’t work. 

How to share a private YouTube video

1. Open YouTube in a web browser. 

2. Click your avatar at the top right of the screen and then click “YouTube Studio (beta)” in the drop-down menu. 

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3. In the pane on the left side of the screen, click “Videos.”

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4. In the list of videos, find the one you want to share and then click its title to switch to the editor.

5. In the pane on the left, move the mouse over the “Other Features” icon, which looks like a square with a magnifying glass, and then click “Share privately.”

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6. In the “Share with others” pop-up, enter the email addresses of the people you want to share the video with, and then click “Save and go back to YouTube Studio.”

In the “Share with others” window, there’s an option selected by default that will send a message to any email address you enter, to notify them that the video has been shared with them. You can uncheck it, but then it will be harder for those people to find the video.

Related coverage from How To Do Everything: Tech:

  • A beginner’s guide to YouTube Studio, YouTube’s built-in video editor, which offers basic editing for free

  • How to block YouTube channels to keep certain users from commenting on your videos

  • How to watch YouTube videos or YouTube TV on your television, and use your phone as a remote control

  • How to temporarily hide or permanently delete your YouTube account, and erase any trace of yourself from the site

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