Preventing users from downloading videos

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  • Updated 10 months ago
What: It would be a real value-added feature if Screencast gave me control over who can download and keep my videos for themselves.

Why: I like so many Screencasters work very hard to create our videos, and retaining control over my content is a high priority to me, as I would guess it is for anyone who goes the extra step to pay for a hosting service like Screencast (which I love!)

It seems odd that we can "hide" a video in our account so that it is only visible with a direct URL, but anyone can download it from our webpage without our permission. It's sort of a false sense of security. 

How it benefits me and others: I embed my videos on my subscription website. It's really important to me that my users can't just right-click on a video and download it. If the videos get posted elsewhere it will be a real problem for my business. 

Please consider making this a high priority. Thank you!
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genealogygemspodcast

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Posted 2 years ago

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Dustin Smith

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I kind of think that screencast already has all those features built in... I've used most of them to control content distribution... especially the download control ... that's all done by checkboxes
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genealogygemspodcast

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I was told on Techsmith chat today that it is not possible to control whether a viewer can right click on your video on your webpage and download it. If you know of content control checkboxes, PLEASE let me know. Thanks.
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Bernd Jaeger

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The simple fact is. Once it is on the internet (no matter where) it CAN be downloaded. There are many tools even to download from "protected" sites. 

To make it short. Once another person can view the video - they can download it.

Checkboxes only hinder the easy download, but as I stated - once it's on the net - one can download it.
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genealogygemspodcast

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The typical viewer, at least our typical viewers, are not hackers, and they won't be using any 3rd party tools to try to download what they should not. By putting up a barrier we are communicating that doing so is not encouraged or permitted. And distribution would be a violation of our copyright. By not having that barrier, it is like saying "go for it."
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Bernd Jaeger

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You do not need any extra tools as I just found out. Its so simply that not displaying the download button makes absolutely no difference. You can check yourself. No need to be a hacker :-/ 

1. View the Source Code of any screencast.com page 
2. Press CTRL + F and search for MP4
3. Copy the URL and there you go - you can now download the file or view it without any problems.

I made a short demo how easy and quickly its done...
https://www.screencast.com/t/ZbarrcLTrHGK

... and if you embed it, its almost the same process. Look at the Source Code, grab the screencast URL and then do the above. So basically - all videos are always up for grabs.
(Edited)
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GuptaProgramming

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This reply was created from a merged topic originally titled How can I prevent user from downloading my video?.
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Glenn Hoeppner, Employee

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Support is accurate, you can't really share media on the internet and protect it completely -- you can only make it more-or-less difficult. That being said, there is an option we expose for you to disable the download link. This would mean your media consumers would have to be a little more savvy or use some kind of tool to download or copy your content. 


Here's documentation on how to disable the download linkhttps://support.techsmith.com/hc/en-us/articles/235678748-Content-Details-View scroll down to the section titled "Manage Download Link and Comments"

I hope this helps,
Glenn
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afrohlich

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Glenn, thanks for your help.  I kind of believe that the real issue here is not the download link.  I do this to my videos but if I right click on the video while playing, there is an option to download the MP4 file.
While I know that it is impossible to completely prevent people from downloading/copying the material, the target audience of my videos is not likely to be able to use fancier tools to download, but would easily right click the video and download the file as an MP4.
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Glenn Hoeppner, Employee

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Hi afrohlich,

That functionality is built into your web browser. I've seen other sites do things to try and suppress it or obscure it. Obviously, we aren't doing anything like that for Screencast.com.

I'll be honest and say I don't think it's likely that we'll change this behavior, but I will bring up this conversation with the Screencast.com managers. :)

Thanks for your feedback,
Glenn
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afrohlich

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Glenn, I found a couple of videos in Tech Smith site where the download video is not available when we right click on the video.  For what I could understand, the videos are hosted in Wistia (https://wistia.com/about-wistia?utm_type=player&utm_product=host&utm_campaign=songs-about-wi...)
The price for all their service is way too expensive for me, unfortunately.  But it is possible to disable the rigth click download.  Can you please take the case to tech support as a suggestion for implementation?  I would gladly pay a couple extra bucks for this.
Alex
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Glenn Hoeppner, Employee

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Hi Everyone,

I have a follow up question for you... are you sending your users to Screencast.com for your content or are you embedding it into your websites?

-Glenn
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afrohlich

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Sending them to Screencast.com.  I also password protect the folders where the videos are stored.

Alex
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Dustin Smith

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Some of each... I have folders of training videos for specific clients and just give them the folder link; if I'm doing a quick "how to" video for somebody I just post it up to screencast and give them the link; sometimes I will alias a screencast link into a hotlink text string on our web site... all of the above