I’ve been hearing a lot of content creators complain about YouTube lately. Things like being demonetized over something silly in the background of their videos. I’ve also heard about people getting false copywrite strikes. Even getting in trouble for videos that have been published for years. So that got me thinking what kind of youtube alternatives are out there?
I am not a youtube star or anything so I can not speak about any of this personally. But there must be something to it with such a wide range of channels talking about it. So I got curious and decided to look around.
This one is kind of new to me but I like the idea a lot. You host your own PeerTube instance on your own server and that is like your own youtube. But you can also connect to other PeerTube instances.
So it is kind of like YouTube but every channel is a self-hosted server. Or something like that. It also uses web torrents so the people hosting the servers do not have to provide 100% of the bandwidth.
When I started to think about YouTube alternatives the first one to come to mind was BitChute. I first discovered it when I was researching web torrents. Bitchute uses web torrents for distributing videos and it seems like a cool technology to me.
I played with it some and it seems good. Not as fancy and polished as YouTube. But that’s to be expected when YouTube has been around for so long and has Google behind them. BitChute is also free so they are working on a much smaller budget then YouTube and google.
I do have some Issues with BitChute. First is that it seems like most of the content on the site is political in nature. I don’t know about you but I am not really interested in watching political shows all day long.
The second issue I have is they seem to do some major compression on videos. I can upload a 1080p gameplay video to youtube and it looks fine. But when I upload a 1080p gameplay video to BitChute it looks fuzzy. I guess they are trying to save space on the server and in return save on hosting cost so I can kind of understand this. But it still sucks.
LBRY is a video distributing platform built around blockchains. It is DRM free and videos download to your computer. A lot of tech youtube channels I watch have moved to LBRY and I’ve not heard any complaints so far.
LBRY’s desktop client works good but I’ve not had much luck with watching videos on the web in the past. I think that’s fixed now but I still do not see any way to embed a web player into your own website. If you do not care about that stuff then maybe LBRY is right for you!
Here is a video from a guy who uses LBRY who can talk about it a lot more then I can.
Vimeo is another YouTube alternative I’ve heard about. It is a paid service so that may turn a lot of people away. But for a price, it can do everything YouTube can do.
Another cool thing about Vimeo is you can lock your videos down so they can only be played on your website. So in a way, you could almost make your own video streaming platform.
As far as I can tell there’s no easy way to monetize Vimeo videos. So if your issue with youtube is demonetization then Vimeo may not be the best place to jump to.
If you just do live streaming then Twitch may be the way to go. It has a big strong community and is backed by amazon. It may be one of the best streaming platforms out there.
Last time I checked Twitch will not let you store all your old videos like YouTube. It is primarily a live streaming service and you can only go back a hand full of videos before they are deleted.
These are the big-name video platforms that I think will make good YouTube alternatives. But there are many others I didn’t talk about. I wanted to stick with the ones I knew something about. But if you know of some other good ones please let me know in the comments below so that I can check them out!
I hope one day one of the alternatives will be able to compete well with YouTube. Because when there is more competition the customers win!