What is Owncast?

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Owncast logo.svg

Owncast logo

Owncast.svg Owncast
Website owncast.online
List of instances fediverse.observer
Mastodon account @owncast

Owncast is a standalone live video streaming server for individuals and organizations. It aims to be a general-purpose solution to any project requiring live streaming functionality that is easy to install and run.

Common uses for Owncast

  • Operate an interactive, Twitch-style live stream where viewers can interact with you over chat.
  • Run a 24/7 internet TV channel publicly to the world, or privately within your home or to your community.
  • Stream a special private event such as a conference, concert, meeting or a class.
  • Monitor a security camera, keep an eye on pets, or watch something taking place elsewhere.
  • Share a video call (such as from Jitsi or Zoom) to a wider audience.

Web Interface with Chat

Owncast provides a web interface for watching video and taking part with the built-in chat server, however none of it is required to use the core video functionality. Instead you may use the raw video feed for use in your native application or existing web sites.

Broadcasting to Owncast

Owncast accepts broadcasts via the RTMP standard.

A common piece of software is OBS, but you can also stream from cell phones or GoPros.

Watching an Owncast Video Stream

Owncast streams to viewers using the HLS, or HTTP Live Streaming standard. While you can watch the video using the include Owncast web interface, you can also use popular applications such as VLC, mpv, QuickTime and more. You can also embed this stream into other web pages you control or applications you build.

Following an Owncast Stream

An Owncast server can optionally enable features that allow you to follow it on the Fediverse. This will notify you each time the stream goes live and make sure you see any messages sent out by the stream. It also allows you, through the standard microblogging platforms (such as Mastodon, Pleroma, Misskey or others), to share the stream to your own followers each time it goes live to grow the audience.

Owncast Chat

Viewers may take part in anonymous chat without any requirement of account creation or identification. However they may optionally register using IndieAuth or a Fediverse account to create a persistent chat account that they can use across devices.

External Links