There goes that saying about 15 minutes of fame: YouTube announced today that it is doing away with limiting video uploads to 15 minutes. However, you’ll only be able to upload longer videos if you behave well and don’t violate any of the site’s rules.


YouTube announced on its blog Thursday that it won’t limit video uploads to 15 minutes anymore. However, not everyone will be able to upload entire feature-length video productions: The new freedom only applies to “selected users with a history of complying with the YouTube Community Guidelines and our copyright rules.”

So how long can your uploads be, provided that you’re one of the lucky ones? A YouTube spokesperson told us that there is “no time limit” for uploads of pre-approved users. The company is celebrating this as yet another success of its copyright filters. From its blog post:

“This launch has been made possible in part by the continued advances in our state-of-the-art Content ID system, as well as our other powerful tools for copyright owners. Over 1000 global partners use Content ID to manage their content on YouTube, including every major U.S. movie studio and music label.”

Uploads with no time limits aren’t entirely new to YouTube. Partners of the site were already able to upload videos longer than 15 minutes. Extending these privileges to more users is also a tribute to the fact that the costs of distributing video are continuously falling, as well as YouTube’s ambitions to attract more longer-form content suitable of being consumed via a televisionwith a lean-back experience.

Picture courtesy of Flickr user Bart Hiddink.

Related GigaOm Pro Content (subscription required):

You’re subscribed! If you like, you can update your settings

  1. I hope we get to see some great new long form content and that the creators of that content get to make some money.

    1. Yes, I agree and what I also do not understand is why YouTube doesn’t just tell the public what its “partners” get paid and for what. I’m in the process of creating a 22-minute animated history show whose pilot I am hoping to load up on YouTube with the goal of getting the show picked up by a network. Thankfully, today I learn that the 15-minute cap is no longer in play. However, how do you get approved for breaking that cap? Also, if YouTube could generate me a decent amount of revenue, I would create one 22-minute episode after another for just YouTube and forget the networks. BUT you cannot start a venture without knowing what you can expect and thus why I am working on the premise of getting picked up by a network.

      This secrecy by YouTube is plain stupid. If one of their goals is to get professional content producers to make stuff for YouTube, YouTube has to be VERY forthcoming with the financials. Think of it from a content producer’s standpoint. That is what YouTube needs to do and STOP this childish secrets playing that they’re doing.

      1. Hi Scott,

        Please email me at chris(at)mojo24.com.

        I can help you with your show.


  2. I guess they are going to raise the upload file size restrictions too?

  3. I would sure like to know how to get approved for this extended length. Who does one contact?

  4. I never understood YouTube’s insistence that video length somehow limited copyright infringement but I’m glad to see the time restrictions loosened once again. The more flexible Google can make YouTube, the more professional original content will show up. Hopefully soon they’ll allow trusted people to pick their own thumbnails instead of forcing them to pick from the three provided that never have anything to do with the video.

Comments have been disabled for this post