PeerTube — Decentralized Video, Powered by ActivityPub and WebTorrent

A PeerTube instance in the wild, complete with test videos.

Building a decentralized YouTube competitor has remained a pipe dream of the federation community for some time. Now, that dream is becoming a reality thanks to the efforts of the PeerTube project.

The project’s developer, known by the handle “Chocobozzz”, describes PeerTube as:

Decentralized video streaming platform using P2P (BitTorrent) directly in the web browser with WebTorrent.
As a bonus, it is possible to embed PeerTube videos directly into your Mastodon timeline.

PeerTube just implemented ActivityPub into their platform, opening up a world of possibilities when it comes to federating videos.

For now, the platform only allows instance admins to decide which instances to follow, but in the future that may change.

You can watch a quick video here to see how the federation component works.


“We can’t build a FOSS video streaming alternatives to YouTube, Dailymotion, Vimeo… with a centralized software. One organization alone cannot have enough money to pay bandwidth and video storage of its server.
So we need to have a decentralized network (as Diaspora for example). But it’s not enough because one video could become famous and overload the server. It’s the reason why we need to use a P2P protocol to limit the server load. Thanks to WebTorrent, we can make P2P (thus bittorrent) inside the web browser right now.” — PeerTube Project Readme

Development of PeerTube is sponsored by Framasoft, a non-profit that promotes, spreads and develops Free Software. If you want to support this project, please consider donating to them.