How to Live Stream on YouTube

Go Live on YouTube in only a few steps

What to Know

  • Select video icon > Go Live > follow account verification instructions, and select Submit.
  • Go Live: Select video icon > Go Live > grant webcam access. Configure first livestream and select Go Live.
  • Manage livestream: Select avatar > YouTube Studio > Videos > Live > manage live video archives.

This article explains how to verify a YouTube account for streaming, go live for the first time, and manage in-progress live streams through a web browser.

How to Verify Your Account on YouTube for Livestreamig

Before you can live stream, you need to perform a one-time setup that verifies your account. This ensures you're not a bot, and that you qualify to live stream. If you're ready to start live streaming to your followers, here is how to verify your account:

  1. In a web browser, open YouTube and make sure you are logged into the account you plan to live stream from.

  2. Select the video icon at the top of the YouTube page, to the right of the search bar and choose Go live.

    The YouTube web site with the Live Stream menu open.
  3. On the Account verification page, follow the instructions to select your country and request a verification code, which you can receive via text message or voice. Enter your phone number and then select Submit.

    The YouTube Live Stream account verification page.
  4. After you get the code, complete the verification and submit it again. 

  5. If you entered the code correctly, you'll be verified. Now, if you return to the video menu and try to go live, you'll see a message telling you that your account will take 24 hours to activate. It really does take a full 24 hours, so don't plan to live stream any sooner if this is your first time. 

How to Go Live for the First Time

Once you're verified, then you can create your first livestream on YouTube.

  1. In a web browser, open YouTube and select the video icon, then select Go live.

  2. You will probably need to give the browser permission to use your webcam.

  3. Configure your first live stream. Give the video a name, and choose the level privacy you want. You can make the video public, only for people who have a link to the video, or private for you only

    Starting a YouTube Live Stream
  4. You need to indicate if the video is made specifically for children.

  5. Select Next.

  6. YouTube will deliver a short countdown and take a snapshot for the video thumbnail. Be ready!

  7. When you're ready to go live, select Go Live. You'll now be broadcasting live.

    The YouTube Live Stream preview window.
  8. When you're done broadcasting, select End Stream.

    A Live Stream in progress on YouTube.
  9. Finally, you have a choice to edit the video in YouTube Studio—this lets you trim the start and end and make other simple improvements to the video—or select Dismiss to archive the live stream in the Studio. 

How to Manage Your Live Streams

After you create one or more live streams, you can always find them archived in YouTube Studio. They never expire automatically, so they will be there unless you choose to delete them. 

  1. In a web browser, open YouTube. Select your account avatar at the top right of the page, and then select YouTube Studio.

    Opening YouTube Studio on the YouTube web page.
  2. On the Studio page in the navigation on the left, select Videos.

  3. Atop the list of videos, select Live to switch to your live streams.

  4. Now that you can see your live streams, you can select videos to edit them. If you want to delete a live stream, select the selection box to the left of the video and then choose More actions from the menu across the top of the video list. Then select Delete forever.

    Using YouTube Studio to delete a Live Stream video.

Why Can't I Live Stream on YouTube?

To qualify for live streaming, you need to not have any restrictions on your account. Here is what will disqualify you from live streaming:

  • You have one or more YouTube community guidelines strikes against your account.
  • You've previously had a live stream that was blocked globally.
  • You've had a previous live stream with a copyright takedown notice.
  • Your live stream includes a copyrighted live broadcast.

While anyone without any account restrictions can live stream from a browser on their computer, you need to have a minimum of 1000 channel subscribers to live stream from your phone or another mobile device.

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