Video privacy settings

Change your video’s privacy settings to make it public, unlisted, or private

When you upload a video, by default it’s set as a “Public” video, which means that anybody can view it. You can easily change the privacy settings while you’re uploading the video in the “Privacy Settings” section. Or, if you’ve already uploaded the video, you can change the privacy settings by following the steps below:

  1. Visit your Video Manager.
  2. Find the video you’d like to change, then click the Edit button.
  3. In the “Privacy Settings” drop-down menu, select Public, Unlisted, or, Private.
  4. Click Save changes.

Privacy settings drop-down menu

Private videos

A private video can only be seen by you and the users you select. The video won’t appear on your channel or search results and will be invisible to other users.

If you use your Google+ identity on YouTube (your channel is linked to a Google+ page or Google+ profile), you’ll see a field under the “Privacy Settings” drop-down menu where you can add the profiles or email addresses of the people with whom you’d like to share your video. They’ll need a Google account to view your video. You can also share your videos with Google+ circles.

Sharing private videos for channels not linked with Google+

You need to link your channel with Google+ in order to share a private video with other users.

If you have not linked your channel with Google+:

  • Private videos that you previously shared with users will continue to be visible by them.
  • You will not, however, be able to modify the list of users who are able to view your private video, except to remove all users' access to the video.
  • If you would like to share a private video to a different set of users than it is currently shared with, you can link your channel with Google+ and then share it.
  • Alternatively, you can share your video as an unlisted video instead of a private video; then, anyone with the link will be able to access it, but your video will continue to not appear in YouTube search results.

Unlisted videos

Making a video unlisted means that only people who have the link to the video can view it. To share an unlisted video, just share the link with the people who you’d like to have access to it, and they’ll then be able to see it. Unlike private videos, the people you share the video with do not need to have a Google account to see the video, and they can share with more people simply by forwarding the link to them.  

Unlisted videos won’t appear in any of YouTube's public spaces, like your channel page or search results.

Anyone who knows the video’s link can place the video in a playlist, even a public playlist. This could make the video visible on other parts of YouTube, including the homepage.

Your video could appear elsewhere on the web if you or anyone who you shared the video with shares it more broadly. For example, if somebody with whom you share the video goes on to share the link through an email or posts it on a blog, then all the people who access that link will be able to view the video.

Problems creating unlisted videos
Only those who have YouTube accounts in good standing are able to create unlisted videos. If you don't see the option to make your video unlisted in your Account settings, it could be that your YouTube account is not in good standing and has a Terms of Service violation or a strike for copyright infringement.