YouTube is a strict platform in 2022. Videos might get deleted because of reasons that would have been overlooked just a few years ago.
In the name of making the platform more child-friendly, YouTube has deleted a plethora of videos over the years (which is mostly a good thing.)
However, sometimes some of us might want to or even need to watch a video that is now deleted. What can we do then?
Well, that is why today I will be explaining to you, how to watch deleted YouTube videos using simple hacks.
If you have got the URL of deleted YouTube video, the easiest way to watch is to go to archive.org and check if it exists in their database. If you don’t have the URL, try to search if the video is available on different social platforms or search using the Google search trick as mentioned below.
What Are Deleted YouTube Videos?
Going to any particular video’s link might pop up the message saying “Video removed”. This dismal message might put you off, but it is highly likely that the video is actually just hidden, and not in real terms: “deleted”.
The database administrators at YouTube do not delete any videos in most cases, thus leaving a chance for you to fetch the video and watch it. The means for this may be unconventional, however.
How to Watch Deleted YouTube Videos with URL
If you happen to have the URL of the deleted video stored, here are a few ways to watch it.
Commonly known as the Wayback Machine, the Internet Archive contains just about anything that you might want to see or watch.
If you have the URL of the video you are trying to watch, this is a fairly easy task. I was wondering how I can get a link to a video that is now deleted, but then I remembered that they stay in your browser history.
Moreover, they can also stay in a shared social media platform or your YouTube history. To get the video back, follow these simple steps.
- Take the URL and paste it into the Wayback Machine website. This will now enable a search that will look for a YouTube video with that link.
- If the video is found, which might take a while, you can download it and get access.
- After downloading the video, you can watch the video as you please and save it in the cloud if you want.
The Internet Archives provides you with this facility given that you are using the date feature properly.
Before you make a search, make sure that your search contains the oldest available date. This way, it will bypass any possibility of errors or bugs that might happen after the video was set to its hidden state.
The browser is another easy way to view deleted YouTube videos. I did not know about this method until I needed to look up a song that had been erased. This did not seem possible when I had read about it first, but the more you know!
This particular step also needs you to know the URL of the video you are trying to watch. You have to copy the link and go to the web page that had the video that is now deleted. Remove the link segment that contains “watch?y=” to “embed/”.
Once this has been changed, press enter and the browser will redirect you to a new page that has the video. This is called embedding the video.
It is the same way that a video might be attached to a webpage outside of YouTube. Just to reiterate, if you are trying to watch a deleted YouTube video that has the link
Then you will have to change it to make it present like this:
This will be enough for the embedded link to work. Often, even after a video is deleted, it will not be taken off the database, thus it will still be visible to you as a browser, and to the owner too.
It should be noted, however, that I am aware that there are constantly changes and updates to the YouTube platform. This might render this feature useless for some newer videos. However, in most cases, embedded links should work properly.
How to Watch a Deleted YouTube Video without the URL
Archives.org might be providing you with an accessible way to get a video given that you have the URL.
However, it is not always possible for you to have the URL of a deleted video. You might have refreshed the cache of your browser, or deleted the search history. In such a situation where you don’t have the URL, the technique is different.
However, this method will be rather more complicated and critical. Let us take these steps accordingly.
- First of all, you have to launch a new tab in your browser and enter the Google search option. Now you have to navigate yourself to a technique called Google Search Operators.
- When you have the cursor placed, type in “site:www.youtube.com” with the name of the deleted video. Now give some time to Google for making the search as it begins.
- The video might be present on Facebook, Instagram, or somewhere else on a different account. It is now possible for you to change the site’s URL without losing access to watch the video.
- Afterward, you can follow the first method and navigate to the Wayback Machine (aka archive.org). Now you can download the video to your computer accordingly and go along.
Note: If the Internet Archives is showing up as invalid or unavailable, this might be due to issues that the website is facing. It can also be caused by servers down. You should have patience and just try again later.
How to Watch Deleted YouTube Videos – Other Platforms
Funny as it may seem, the internet actually might have multiple sources for you to watch the same deleted videos. Vimeo, Metacafe, and Dailymotion are just a few of the popular YouTube alternatives. They might contain the video that you are looking for.
Moreover, there is a high chance that social media platforms have that video too.
However, do note that if this video is present on the social media page of the same group that owns the YouTube channel, there is a likeliness that they will remove it from their social media.
Here are some of the other video hosting platforms that may contain the video you are looking for: Vimeo, Metacafe, Dailymotion, and Vevo.
If you cannot find the videos on the pages of the particular user, there may also be re-uploads from channels that are not related to them.
How to Backup and Protect YouTube Videos?
If the video that was deleted was under your ownership, then it probably feels personal. If a video contains any content that goes against the website’s policy, then it is likely to be taken down.
You should always keep backups of the videos that you upload, especially because of this deletion policy.
You should understand why your videos were deleted in the first place though.
- It can happen because of copyright issues, as some other users claimed content in your video to be their own. It can be music, video, or some other form of content.
- Some videos can also be removed due to privacy complaints, which can be intentional or unintentional. The result will be the removal of your video, nonetheless.
- If your video promotes any kind of violence or offense, that is another reason for your video to get deleted.
To back up your videos, consider storing all your creations in multiple locations. Make it so that your backup has a backup. You should be fine after that.
The reality is that an automated algorithm is likely to delete your video, maybe even by accident sometimes.
So having all your creations as backup is of the utmost importance to avoid any loss of content. If a video was removed due to some content, just edit it later and upload it again.
What Happens to Deleted Videos?
To summarize, deleted videos can remain in the database. It is more about actually “hiding” the video, than deleting it.
To actually delete a video, the YouTube administration team would need to manually select and delete the video. This actually does happen after the video has remained hidden from public viewing for long enough.
Storage space is valuable, and YouTube certainly would not want to waste any of theirs. However, special videos may have gained a lot of traction or videos that had legal issues that remain separated from the storage when such a deletion process occurs.
Such videos cannot be viewed even if you use the strategies mentioned above. I have tried, I know.
The reason for this is that YouTube personally makes sure that they stay away from public viewing. Else, they might have to face controversy for allowing this to be viewed in the first place.
These were some of the ways you can watch a deleted YouTube video. If you are a content creator, this is probably more important to you than others. So, we hope this article was able to inform you properly and help you out.