Best YouTube Alternative - Speculation

So we all know that YouTube is pretty bad for a few reasons, the first and foremost reason definitely being that it’s owned by Google, and I think many of us know that there are some alternatives. There are 3 that come to mind:

  2. Peertube

Unfortunately, all of these have some barrier to entry:

  1. requires an external player (that does not have an RPM package for Fedora, OpenSuse, etc)
  2. Peertube is federated and, like Mastodon, the user has to know what instance they want to make their account with which can lead to confusion
  3. Peertube is also Peer-to-Peer which can cause some slowdown or longer buffering if there aren’t enough peers
  4. is owned by which currently has a wait time for registering
  5. If you do have a account, registering the account is a little tricky for an end user
  6. None of these platforms have nearly the amount or level of content that YouTube has.

Of these three, I think has the best chance of succeeding for consumers, but only because it has an easy-to-remember url and you’re able to watch the videos in your browser; however, I think Peertube could pull ahead if someone made an instance with a catchy, easy to remember URL, such as “”.

Does anyone else have thoughts on this?

edit: Apologies, I meant Peertube, not Freetube.


JoshWHoTV is coming along strong. They started live streaming recently, and it’s good quality.

BitChute is okay, but the site seems to be regressing.

When I tried FreeTube I just copied and pasted from youtube subscription list that is,and it worked fine.never had to remember the URL’s.

I guess it comes down to discoverability for me. Yes, YouTube is not ideal and being owned by Google is a big negative for lots of people, particularly Linux and open source people. Beyond the technical issues you bring up (well summarized BTW) I see the larger problem as being one of people finding the content. Most people use Google for search and, of course, they are going to promote YouTube results. Even alternative search engines are going to promote the most popular and relevant content which is, of course, YouTube.

I have tried several of these options just to watch things and it is pretty frustrating in many cases. Peer to peer seems like a good idea but there are usually so few peers that I can’t watch most things. Good idea that without peers doesn’t work. Federated services are challenging to use, particularly finding things in other instances. I like Mastodon but some of the drama it brings with disallowing associations with other instances is pretty frustrating. Not to mention that there’s no guarantee that something you’ve spent time participating in and building relationships could just go away.

The only way I see one of these alternatives growing is if a major content creator from YouTube or a broadcast network and so on were to bring a large audience with them. Growing an audience on one of these alternatives is pretty much impossible at this point sadly.


So I recently had the chance to upload a video. I tried to upload it to first, because of the reasons listed above, but it doesn’t seem to have uploaded it correctly… either that, or I need to pay to get the video to load. I say this because even if I go directly to my channel, the video just plain doesn’t show up, it just has an endless loading circle.

After about 15 minutes I decided to jump over to Peertube, which was much easier to create an account and upload the video to. So in the future, I think I’ll keep using Peertube due to it “just working.”

Even with DuckDuckGo, when you search videos, it is showing ONLY YouTube Video.

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I find Invidious not bad. It uses Youtube but is lighter. It is a great option on the phone where the Youtube app is sucking on battery and full of ads.

This answer will probably not be well-liked, but it’s deceptively simple. If your video is in .mp4 format, then upload it into Nextcloud (in a folder), then share a link out (in a Dropbox-like way).

When people visit that Nextcloud folder (having followed the link), they can either download the video file, or view it directly, in a streaming-like way, right in the browser (if they click the play-button-like icon to the left of the filename). Some, but not all of the controls you commonly use in Youtube will be there, in that browser-streamed video viewer.

I do this myself for the occasional screencast I record using OBS. Nobody I share the video files with complain that it’s not a feature-rich enough experience, like Youtube. That’s my point here.

Sometimes, but not always, a really simple solution such as this is good enough.

Youtube is more than just watching videos; it’s about discovering new creators and learning new things that you may never have discovered before. How would I discover people like Tom Scott, CGP Grey, or even Destination Linux if they simply uploaded their videos to Nextcloud and sent those links to a select few people? It would be impossible.

So sure, your workaround works for sharing to a couple of close friends and family, but it lacks the very important aspect of discoverability.

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I found out this group through BitChute. I don’t do CensorshipTube anymore.

You can use LBRY in a browser, and there are Flatpak and AppImage versions.

None of the alternative 'tubes really scratch my itch however, as none of the non-tech creators I watch are there. I suppose I could email them requests—I’ve heard that syncing youtube with BitChute/LBRY is fairly painless.

I have added LBRY to the list of platforms that DLN and TuxDigital are using. In fact, I have switched away from BitChute and PeerTube to LBRY because it is SO MUCH better on the creator side that the other 2 are now just a chore.

LBRY now has where you can watch videos without getting the external player. It works great as well.

DLN on LBRY | TuxDigital on LBRY | DasGeek on LBRY | Linux For Everyone on LBRY

Syncing to BitChute is a big pain still but LBRY syncing is pretty much seamless! LBRY has made contributing to the platform as painless as possible in regards to adding an extra platform to existing workloads. This is why I am now a fan of LBRY and am supporting it as an equal to YouTube in regards to my attention. In fact, I contributed some code to LBRY recently so I guess I’m giving them a little more attention than YT lol

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Thanks for this update. I was wondering why so many people were switching to LBRY lately and I guess that’s why.

It does also solve the “one place to go for all the content” problem, so that’s a plus.

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I recently had to unsub from one of my Linux channels on YouTube because he went on a strange religious rant against LBRY. Has anyone had issues with the kinds of content they’ve run into on the service? I realize with their lack of filters compared to YouTube there’s a chance of butting up against views and/or content you don’t agree with, but is it really that widespread of an issue?

That’s an issue on all of the alternative platforms. Most people are there because their content isn’t welcome on YouTube.

That’s an issue on all of the alternative platforms. Most people are there because their content isn’t welcome on YouTube.

Most of the people I subscribe to like the DLN family and a lot of others are also on LBRY, because there are some people that refuse to go to a Google site.

LBRY is not my favorite, I still like Google, but what I understand LBRY makes it easy for Google channels to upload their content from Google

On LBRY, if you look at your settings, there is a switch to disable or enable that type of content he was speaking of, so I am not sure what his problem is. With that, I have never seen what is talking about.