Frequently Asked Questions
Who founded YouTube and when was it founded?
YouTube was founded in early 2005 by three ex-PayPal employees: Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim. The beta version of the site launched in May 2005.
What is YouTube's vision?
YouTube's vision is to give everyone a voice, to evolve video, and to make our partners and advertisers successful. Co-Founder Chad Hurley articulated YouTube's vision most recently in an anniversary blog post.
How many videos are on YouTube?
48 hours of video are uploaded every minute, resulting in nearly 8 years of content uploaded every day.
How many users does YouTube have?
We have hundreds of millions of users from around the world.
Your infrastructure costs must be enormous. How can you afford to pay your rent?
We are primarily focused on and concerned with growing the number of videos uploaded to YouTube over time. So, we build and manage our own infrastructure, which minimizes costs. Also, as technology improves over time, our infrastructure costs decrease.
How many channels have been created on YouTube?
Tens of millions of people have created YouTube channels.
What's the most viewed video of all time?
This changes frequently, so we invite you to check out the most viewed video at any given moment. You can also discover the most viewed video of the day, week, and month globally. The most viewed videos can also be broken out by specific countries where we're localized.
What's the most subscribed channel of all time?
Like the most viewed video of all time, this changes. You can find the most subscribed partners of all time here. You can also discover the most subscribed partner of the day, week and month.
Does YouTube have movies or TV shows?
Yes. We have over 7,000 hours of long-form content on YouTube, including thousands of short films and television episodes and hundreds of full-length movies.
Is YouTube available to viewers worldwide? Which countries can access YouTube? Which can't?
YouTube is localized in 24 countries and regions and available in more than 30 languages. You can find a full list of supported languages and localized areas at the bottom of any page on www.youtube.com.
Why can't I upload videos longer than 15 minutes?
All users have the ability to upload videos up to 15 minutes in length. Users may be able to obtain the ability to upload longer length videos by meeting certain requirements, including verifying his/her account with a mobile phone, maintaining a track record of not violating our ToS, Community Guidelines and copyright policies, and having an account in "good standing," among other things.
Can YouTube give me permission as a broadcaster to use a video in a television or movie broadcast?
No. If you're interested in using a YouTube video in your broadcast or movie, you need to reach out directly to the video's creator or uploader. You can do this by clicking the link on the user's channel that reads "Send Message," and asking the owner for permission to use their content.
How does YouTube count views?
A view is counted whenever someone watches a video on YouTube. We do not get more specific than this to avoid attempts at artificially inflating view counts.
Why are some YouTube videos unavailable on my phone/IPTV, etc.?
Content owners on YouTube can choose where they want their videos to appear, including on mobile devices, IPTVs or even on YouTube.com itself. Our goal is to provide content owners with the tools they need to make informed decisions about where and how their videos are viewed.
Why is youtube.com sometimes unavailable?
Forty-eight hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute and we have hundreds of millions of users worldwide. Occasionally, YouTube users may encounter errors, or a slower than normal YouTube experience. Rest assured our engineering team works around the clock to manage the site and is working hard to minimize downtime.
Can users download YouTube videos?
No. Many websites offer services that either download or attempt to download YouTube videos from the site. Unless you see a "download" or similar link displayed by YouTube on the service for that content, downloading YouTube videos or using an external application to download videos is a violation of the video owner's copyright and our Terms of Service.
There's a site disguising itself as YouTube asking users to download a plugin to watch videos. When users download the video their computers are infected with malware. What's YouTube doing to prevent this?
We are aware that occasionally malware threats will pose as YouTube and invite users to download a plugin to watch a YouTube Video. These sites and the malware that is downloaded through them are not related to YouTube in any way. Our goal is to make users' online video experience as easy and fast as possible. YouTube never requires users to download players or plugins, as this would run counter to our philosophy and commitment to our community's experience. We also encourage our users to be vigilant about checking the URLs of websites they visit.
Who are YouTube partners, and how are they different from YouTube users?
YouTube partners are content creators who have been invited to join our partnership program. They include established media companies like Sony Pictures and Universal Music Group; new media companies like Mondo Media, Machinima and Next New Networks; and YouTube web hit-makers, users who have created extremely popular videos on YouTube. YouTube partners are able to upload videos of any length and can monetize those videos by having ads served on them or by making them available to rent. In contrast, users are limited to uploading videos under 15 minutes in length and cannot generate revenue from those videos.
How do you become a partner?
There is no specific formula that will get you invited to become a partner. However, some general factors we consider include how often you upload videos, how big your audience is (e.g. the number of views and subscribers your videos have), the number of videos you upload, and whether your content abides by our community guidelines, including respecting copyright.
What's an individual video partner?
Sometimes an individual video can become very popular. In these cases we will invite the user who uploaded the video to have ads accompany their video, and participate in revenue sharing. YouTube gives individual video partners the majority of the money generated from these ads. David After Dentist is a good example of an individual video partner.
How do YouTube partners make money?
Once a user or company becomes a part of the YouTube Partner Program, they can monetize their videos by having ads served on them, or making them available to rent. YouTube gives them the majority of the money generated from these ads.
Is YouTube profitable?
Google does not break out revenue across its products. YouTube does have the right business model in place and our business is progressing well.
How does YouTube make money?
As the world's largest online video site, many advertisers are interested in running campaigns that reach our audience. Advertisers can buy ads on the YouTube homepage, search results pages, and even within the videos themselves. They also run contests and sponsor events such as live concerts and holiday promotions.
How does YouTube deal with copyrighted content posted to the site?
We take copyright very seriously. We've built groundbreaking technology for copyright holders that we call Content ID, a sophisticated set of tools that helps them find their content on YouTube and gives them the choice of what to do when they find it: block it, leave it up, or make money from it. Content ID scans over 100 years of video every day and is used by over 1000 partners, including every major US network broadcaster, movie studio, and record label. In addition, if a user feels that a video is violating their copyright, they can flag the video and select "infringes my copyright" from the list of options for review by the YouTube team. If a user feels they have wrongly received a DMCA copyright takedown they can file a counter-notice (more details on counter-filing can be found here).
I can still find copyrighted videos on YouTube. Does that mean the system is broken?
Not at all. Content owners are given choices with Content ID to block, track, or leave up and make money from the videos uploaded to YouTube. Sometimes content creators choose to keep videos up on YouTube for promotional purposes.
Why was "X" video removed? Aren't you just censoring content?
We have a policy of not commenting on individual video removals. Videos may be removed from YouTube for a variety of reasons. For example, a video may be removed from the site because the music used in the video belongs to a copyright owner who does not want their music used without their permission. A video may also be removed because the identity of a person is revealed without their permission and they have filed a privacy complaint seeking its removal. In addition, videos may be removed for violating YouTube's Community Guidelines. A video that no longer appears on the site may also have been removed by the person who uploaded it, rather than by YouTube.
Does YouTube have any rules?
Yes. Our YouTube Community Guidelines are written in simple, easy-to-understand language so anyone coming to the site can get a quick understanding of what's appropriate to post to YouTube.
Are YouTube's rules the same in every country or are they different?
We have a set of global content policies, or rules, called the YouTube Community Guidelines, that describe what content is and is not allowed on the site. The Community Guidelines prohibit many categories of material, ranging from pornography to hate speech, drug abuse to threats. All users must abide by the Guidelines, irrespective of the country they live in. We also work with local legal authorities to identify and in some cases remove content that violates local laws.
I discovered a video that I think is offensive, how do I get YouTube to remove it?
With 24 hours of video uploaded every minute to YouTube, we cannot pre-screen content and operate at the scale at which we do. It would be like the telephone company pre-screening every call before allowing it to be connected. Instead, we count on our community members, who are watching the site 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to know the Community Guidelines and to flag content they believe violates the rules. We receive thousands of flags every day. Each flagged video is reviewed quickly, and if we find that a video does violate the rules, we remove it (usually in less than an hour) and communicate with the person who uploaded the offending content. We take these violations seriously, and multiple infractions can result in a user's suspension or permanent removal from YouTube.
Why can't my country access a certain video, or YouTube.com?
There are many different reasons why a particular video isn't available in a particular country or geography. Content owners can choose where their content is available. Sometimes, they simply don't have the rights to show certain videos in certain countries or geographies. Other times, in rare instances, the YouTube site can be blocked by a particular country.
What is your stance on the Viacom lawsuit?
In June 2010, a New York District Court granted our request for summary judgment and held that YouTube is protected by the safe harbor of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). This is an important victory not just for us, but also for the billions of people around the world who use the web to communicate and share experiences with each other.