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Share unlisted videos with private links

Vimeo Staff
February 10, 2016 by Vimeo Staff Staff

Since the beginning of our unicorn-ruled universe, we’ve done our best to give video creators as much control over their videos as possible — especially when it comes to privacy. In addition to public and private settings, we’ve provided creators with advanced options like setting a password, only giving specific people access to their video, and hiding their video from vimeo.com while still being able to embed it on other sites. Today, we’ve added yet another option, one specifically requested by our community: the ability to share a video through a private link.


How it works:

  1. If you’re a Plus, PRO, and Business member, go to your video settings and choose “Only people with the private link.” Or, select this option when you’re uploading.
  2. Once you save your changes, you’ll be given a private URL to copy and send to people you choose.
  3. Only people with this link (and people those people share it with) will be able to see your video page. It will be hidden from other groups, channels, search results, and other places on vimeo.com, and people won’t be able to find it through third-party search engines either.

Magical though this new option may be, it’s important to remember that anyone with the link to your video may see it, or pass that link on to other people. If you want to ensure that only certain people have access, you may want to keep it private, or set a password.

Private link sharing, like our other advanced privacy settings, is only available to Plus, PRO, and Business members. But as always, Basic members can still opt to give specific people access to their videos, add a password to protect them, or upgrade to use all of our powerful advanced privacy options.

83 Comments

Nilz Plus

Bout time! Thanks been hoping a long time for this.

Suri Ratnatunga Staff

Hi Aaron! The main difference is an unlisted video page looks like a regular Vimeo video page, whereas a review page is unbranded and does not link back to the creator's Vimeo profile. Also, review pages are a PRO-only feature meant for sharing with clients and gathering feedback, but the ability to share a video through a private link is available to both Plus and PRO members. Also, the private link itself will still work even if the privacy of the video is changed to another setting. For example, if a video’s privacy setting changes from "Only people with the private link" to "Only people with the password," the private link will still direct viewers to the correct video page and they will be prompted to enter the password.

Josh Gooden PRO

This is fantastic! Thanks for listening to our feedback. I was wondering if it is possible for users to be able to embed the link (Facebook for example)? Currently, it gives me an error saying "too many requests" instead of a thumbnail. I'd like to keep some videos private on my Vimeo page, but allow clients to embed/share their video on Facebook like a normal public video (hopefully this makes sense).

Suri Ratnatunga Staff

Hi Josh, that does make sense :) The videos are shareable on Facebook, and you should not be getting a "too many requests" error. Would you mind sending us an email through vimeo.com/help/contact so we can troubleshoot your issue further? Thanks!

Michael Eugster

Sounds good – but a little sad it's only for PLUS and PRO. :'(

PRC Digital Media Plus

Plus is not that expensive and allows Vimeo to pay the electric bill and employees.

Mayads PRO

What is the difference between this and embedding a private/hidden video in a portfolio?

Suri Ratnatunga Staff

Hi Mayads! The main difference is an unlisted video page looks like a regular Vimeo video page. Unlisted videos also aren't indexed by search engines, whereas portfolios are indexed unless they are password protected.

Maku Genki PRO

How do I create a private VOD page to sale videos only to private groups?

Stephen Nangeroni Staff

Hi Mark — currently, we offer the option to host your VOD title exclusively on your own custom domain, in case that's of interest. We don't offer the option to create a private, on-site VOD page at this time, but we can make it so that your VOD page is not discoverable via our search or browse pages. I'll email you in case you'd like to discuss further.

RedRob :Candlelight Productions PRO

Hi Stephen -- if I'm understanding you correctly, with our VOD pages, if we click "Add a custom domain" to "Sell our work on our own domain", it will NOT show up on Vimeo searches, and is not discoverable via any other way by users on Vimeo itself. Is that correct?

Gavin De Paor Plus

Hi Stephen, I'm looking to upgrade to Pro if I can get something similar to Maku set up on my own domain… perhaps you could contact me too via email regarding this. Many Thanks.

NINJIO

This is cool. One feature you definitely should add, is when viewing advanced stats on views, the ability to select "Today" as a date range option. It's really a pain to have to go in there and manually select today's date.

Tamara Hilmes Staff

Pain = no good. Thanks for the suggestion — we'll pass it along to our product team!

NIIS Plus

You have no idea how much this helps our workflow. THANK YOU!

FrazierFoto Plus

Is their a way to have passwords expire for individual users and not have to change the password for others that have it? My client would like to share their video with certain clients but not allow them to forward the private link or share a password with anyone else. Is this possible?

Tamara Hilmes Staff

We currently don't support setting different passwords/permissions for private links, but we'll definitely pass your request along to our product team. In the meantime, you could create a private album for each person with just that video in it, and delete the album when you want to revoke access. I hope that helps!

Andrews University Film Plus

I'm all for Vimeo finding ways to generate income. Theirs is an amazing service, and if they keep themselves afloat, then we benefit.

Chris Mark Smith Plus

Very useful. Someone asked me for this feature today and when I looked for it it was there!

Lee Jackson PRO

wow, my prayers have been answered!! thank you vimeo!!! you wouldn't believe how good this is for me

Tamara Hilmes Staff

We'll believe anything you say! We're pretty gullible. And we're glad it's helpful : )

Studio Komorebi Plus

What's the difference to password? I had people send me a password to their private videos, so did I with my own work in such a case.Technically one could hand the password on too?

Gavin Beck Plus

Some situations require an easier process of sharing a video. In some cases, a password could be a turn-off. If you're passing a specifically tailored showreel to a cold-lead client, one less step in the process could help get your foot in the door.

Studio Komorebi Plus

I see. I suppose that is true in some cases. Although hopefully at least some people can be bothered to do that one mouse click. At some point I truly believe it is time that creators don't completely turn into doormats only for a commission.

Eason Pan Plus

Thanks for listening the feedback. It's very useful in many places.

Martin Walker Plus

That's great news folks. Simplifies things for stuff like family videos and immediate family not having to deal with accounts / passwords Etc.

Jeff Bush PRO

How is this different from a video review link for an unlisted video? Doesn't that accomplish the same thing... of allowing the creator to share the video only with those people who have the link? And that feature has been around for quite awhile.

Aaron Garcia Plus

Sometimes private links are needed. Like when I upload a video I don't want on my profile, but want to share on social media. I'm starting to use Vimeo for everything, including raw footage of everyday life. I didn't want that on my Vimeo profile. I just want my best stuff there.

Nathan Lucy Plus

Buh-bye, YouTube! Vimeo now satisfies all my web video use cases.

8x8 Inc PRO

FINALLY!!!! Thank you vimeo. Game changer. I noticed you turned this function on a few weeks ago and it was such a nice surprise.

Nathan Lucy Plus

I'm curious—was there a philosophical debate inside Vimeo about whether or not this feature would be a good thing? Or was it delayed strictly because of technical challenges, available resources, etc.?

Denise Stewart PRO

privacy would mean to me- a link connected to a email address or a password connected to an email address.

siupham PRO

Vimeo, you, guys, are fantastic! Thank you!

Casey Landrum Plus

If I use the video review page will it show up with the share button? I would gladly upgrade but if share feature button still shows up I have zero privacy !! nothing to prevent client from forwarding video on to others not meant for, Or am I missing something here ?

Richard Rossmann PRO

Hi there. As there is no share button on the private links what is the smartest way if I someone wants to post a private link on Facebook so the Video plus comments will pop up. Just copy paste the link on a Facebook wall?

Elisabeth Parsons Plus

I have tried to do this several times and it never works! I am a plus member. Help!

jeanmichel cote

I am using the API to embed "private links" to a local development environment. In my app, I do: `new Vimeo.Player('mydiv', {id:376401053/277sd754ca})` but obviously, it does not work with the private link thing.

My client is a Plus member.
How should I make it work?

jeanmichel cote

Right, I use the whole URL instead of trying to fit in the ID...

Jodie Mack PRO

Why doesn't this function work when linking to services like Slideroom?

Jodie Mack PRO

You can upload the link with a password in a PDF to Slideroom, but i did mention this issue to their staff as well.

Peter Dolkens

Would be great if we could put a list of "unlisted" videos together into an "unlisted" collection too, so you only have to share the collection URL.

Suri Ratnatunga Staff

Hi Peter – thanks for the feedback! I agree that would be a neat feature, and I've made note of it for our product team to consider.

John A Douglas Plus

How do I share the link on an iPhone. When I go to privacy settings it only shows the edit option but not the actual link.

User

Plus member here. After the video has completed will they be able to see my other videos?

Suri Ratnatunga Staff

Hi there – If you share a video with a private link, your other videos will not appear recommended on the right side of the page (as they do on your public video pages).

Suri Ratnatunga Staff

Hi there – private links actually do not expire. Anyone you share the private link with will have access to your video unless you change the video's privacy to another setting (e.g.. password-protected, hide from Vimeo, etc.).

Peter Bizjak

Hello Vimeo. What happens with the unlisted links when a Plus user goes back to Basic membership? Thank you for your answer.

Lance Childers PRO

Hello, I have a PRO account, and this option is not available. Only:
1. Anyone can see this video
2. Only I can see this video
3. Only people I follow can see this video
4. Only people with a password can see this video
5. Only people I choose can see this video
6. Hide this video from Vimeo

Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

joema Business

I also have a PRO account. The article says there is a share option "“Only people with the private link". I do not see that option.

joema Business

I see the solution. This article is incorrect or out of date. It says the private link option is available when uploading. It is not. It is now apparently only available after uploading. Then (and only then) the option appears under video file settings to share with "Only people with the private link".

Bev Young Marketing Plus

Hi, What is the difference between "Share via private link" in Vimeo vs. an Unlisted video in YouTube?

The Camera 1 Group PRO

Hi,
Is there a way family can watch my private links on their Smart TV app if they have their own Vimeo account?

Grey Machine Films Plus

If you have a video published with a private link. Will that private link still work when you change the privacy settings to public? I want to make the video public but don't want the private link that's been shared to stop working.

Na Me

Can I create a private VOD page to sale videos only to private groups? Or at least on using my own domain? If so please, send me how to?
Thanks!

EMRG PRO

The issue I'm encountering is when I send a password protected link the client can click on our icon and it takes them back to our main page where we upload all of our videos. I'd rather people not be able to do that. Help!

Ocean Walker Plus

Loving the Vimeo features but what would be great and has been mentioned a lot on this thread is an option to have a 'limited access password' (maybe something automatically generated) to send to individuals, which would allow them access for a given period. Or for even more control, inviting them to the album/video by inserting their email address and then being able to revoke by removing their email address???

Sonya & Paul Larisey Business

Exactly, Ocean Walker. Vimeo is only pretending to protect our content with this nonsense of providing links, passwords, or urls that can simply be shared. They can't help screen capture very easily, but leaving out these obvious REQUIREMENTS is looking for widows and orphans. Sorry to say. I desperately need them to be "just that little bit better"

Jesus Martinez

Hi, I have a little problem watching some videos. I am following a person who is also following me and he has some hidden/private videos and he added me to the list of people who can see them. However, when I look into his profile, I cannot see any videos, I can see the number of videos he uploaded (under his profile picture) but that is all. He sent me the private links to watch them but we would like to have his videos visible for me. Am I doing anything wrong? Thanks!

Landesarchiv des Kantons Glarus Business

Hi
Is there a way to export all private links of all my videos?
I have to uplaod around 800 videos and i plan to integrate the private links in the records of our archive directory.
Can please help me someone?
Thanks!

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