How Do You Link to a Specific Part of a YouTube Video?

Screen Capture YouTube
How to Change the Start Time on YouTube. Screen Capture

Question: How Do You Link to a Specific Part of a YouTube Video?

You really want to show someone part of a YouTube video, but you don't want them to have to sit through eight minutes of the boring introduction in order to see the part of the video you really want them to see. How do you just link to the part you want them to see?

Answer: If you want to create a link that starts at a specific point, all you have to do is add the time code to the end of the URL link.

This can be done manually or automatically. Let's go over the long way to do this first, and then we'll get to the super easy shortcut. 

The Long Way - Add the Time Stamp Code to The YouTube URL

First find the URL of the video. This is the URL that shows at the top of the browser when you view the video on YouTube, not the sharing URL you see when you press the sharing button. Remember, this is the complicated way, so read ahead if you want the shortcut. It used to be the only way to specify an alternate start time for a video, other than telling people to scrub to a certain section first. 

The format you can use to specify a time to start a YouTube video is #t=1m30s. The first part #t= marks this as a time stamp. The second part is minutes and seconds, so 1m30s is 1 minute and 30 seconds into the video.

So if you wanted to link to part of a really long video, instead of telling everyone to scroll forward 15 minutes in order to skip the boring introductions, you could instead link them directly to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7RluXxZyYDs#t=15m07s.

Now, here is the shortcut. 

The Easy Way to Add the Time Stamp to Your YouTube Video 

If you want to make your YouTube video start at a specific time frame, you can also use the easy and mostly automatic method to do this through YouTube's sharing options. 

  1. Go to YouTube
  2. Find the video you want to share. 
  1. Click the Share link. 
  2. The Share link should expand to offer you choices in ways to share.
  3. At the bottom of this area, you will notice a small check box "Start at:" This is where you put your start time. 

As long as you scroll to the exact spot where you want the video to start, this field will be auto-populated, making this the easiest method to add a start time to your video. 

If You Are the Video Owner

One more tip. If you own the video in question (you have the rights and it is hosted on your YouTube channel), you do have the option of editing the video inside YouTube and just presenting a version that only shows the parts you want to see. 

You can use YouTube's built-in editing tools to crop the video to exactly the portion you want to show.