How to Upload a Video to

Wednesday, February 16, 2011 | By:

Want to share your newest video with the Chinese-speaking masses, but don’t speak enough Chinese to navigate a video upload? No problem. We’ve got you covered.

First of all, you’ll need to be sure that Youku supports your video. The good news is that they support just about anything. There are no size or time limits, although videos over 200MB must be uploaded using Youku’s upload software. Supported video filetypes include: .wmv .avi .dat .asf .rm .rmvb .ram .mpg .mpeg .3gp .mov .mp4 .m4v .dvix .dv .dat .mkv .flv .vob .ram .qt .divx .cpk .fli .flc and .mod.

Of course, to upload a video, you’re going to need an account, assuming you don’t have one already. In the upper righthand corner of there’s a link that says 注册. Click that.

On the next page, fill out the basic registration information. You’ll need to provide (in this order):

  1. Email帐号: your email address
  2. 昵称: your nickname, the name that will appear as the author of your video
  3. 登录密码: your password
  4. 重填密码: your password again
  5. 验证码: the letters and/or numbers from the image below. If you can’t read them, click 点此刷新 to refresh the image.

Be sure that the check box below the image is checked (this says you’ve read their terms of use agreement) and then click the button below that says “完成注册” to finish your registration.

That should take you directly to a page that gives you three main options. The first, “上传视频” is exactly what you want (it means “upload a video”) so click on that link (it’s the one with the upwards-pointing arrow image next to it).

This takes you to the “upload video” form. Fill it out as follows:

  1. 选择视频: This is where you choose your video file. Click the 浏览 button on the right to browse your hard drive, select the video file you want to upload in the pop-up window, and then click open. You should see the name of your video file appear in the space next to the characters 选择视频. (Note: if your video file is bigger than 200MB, you will not be able to upload it via the website, but you can still upload it via Iku, Youku’s video uploading software, which you can download here. It won’t work on a Mac, though).
  2. 标题: Fill in the title of your video.
  3. 简介: Enter a short description of your video
  4. 标签: Enter some tags to help people search for your video. Separate tags with a space, not commas.
  5. 所属分类: Select a category for your video. There are lots of options, but probably you want to choose either 原创 (original creation) or 其他 (other). If your video is a music video or a concert, choose 音乐.
  6. 版权所有: Choose your copyright situation. Selecting 转载 allows others to copy and repost your work, selecting 原创 restricts them to viewing it via your upload.

Below that is a box that you have to check, agreeing that your video doesn’t contain any of the following: reactionary politicial ideas, pornography, serious violence, content that violates the lawful rights of others, or content that you don’t own the rights to distribute.

Assuming you’re not uploading pirated violent reactionary pornography, click the button to the right that says “开始上传” to begin your upload.

You should then see a progress bar that will indicate the progress of your upload. If you see an error message, be sure you filled out all the sections of the form, make sure all your tags are at least two characters long, and try hitting “开始上传” again.

If you’re in China, your upload will likely progress very quickly, but international users may be in for a wait. Do not refresh or close the page while your video is uploading! If you do, all the progress of the upload will be lost.

When it finishes, you will see a screen titled “上传完毕.” Congratulations, your video has uploaded. The information you entered in the form will be displayed below, and below that, two buttons. The first, “上传新视频” will take you back to the upload screen in case you want to upload another video. The second, “进入我的优盘” will take you to your account screen. Click that one.

At your account page, the left-side menu lists several options. Click “我的视频” and then on “我上传的” under that to see the videos you’ve uploaded. You should see an image of your video there, but probably, it won’t be posted yet, and there will be a message that says “审核中”. All videos must go through moderation before they’re posted to Youku (or any other Chinese video site). You just have to be patient.

You may recieve an email from Youku when your video has been approved and posted, but you can check back easily at any time by logging in (click the 登录 button on the top right of and then clicking on “优盘” (on the top right of, right after your username, where the 登录 button was before you logged in).

Happy uploading! And while you’re there, why not visit the World of Chinese Youku?

If you’re having technical issues with YouKu, please visit the YouKu Help Page and it will give you instructions on how to properly configure your browser for YouKu.

Learn more about the Chinese internet, with our articles on Weibo and Taobao.

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24 Responses to How to Upload a Video to

  1. Alexandra says:

    Thank you very much (谢谢). This video was of a great help!!

  2. Ken Gettinger says:


    I tried and tried to register with Youku so I could upload a video. No matter what I typed in the Nickname box it said that nickname is already registered. I know that can’t be the case as I started trying the most bizarre nicknames. I used an online english to Chinese translation since it said you must use Chinese characters. Any suggestions on what I’m doing wrong or do they just block westerners from registering? Thanks.

    • Keoni Everington (华武杰) says:

      Hi Ken,

      It turns out that the nickname field does not automatically refresh. Each time you try a new nickname, you’ll need to click another field to prompt it to search the database of nicknames to see if it has been used before or not. There are a lot of YouKu users out there and a lot of names have already been taken, so try adding a number at the end of your nickname. Also, you don’t have to choose a nickname in Chinese characters, you can use an English one instead, again you’ll probably need to add a number or two in the event it’s already been taken. I tried with both obscure English and Chinese nicknames and neither worked until I added numbers at the end as they had already been taken.

  3. Masachanman says:


    It seems like you have everything under control.
    I was wondering if you could help me with my problem.
    I have uploaded a video for my mom to watch, but it says “Sorry, this video can only be streamed within Mainland China.” Do you know how to set it so that my mom (in Japan) could watch it?
    (FYI:It’s a Japanese TV series and I don’t especially want to make it public. I have set a password for the video for now, but is not stream-able outside China…) Help please!

    • Keoni Everington (华武杰) says:

      Hi Masachanman,

      It seems that Youku is blocked in Japan due to licensing issues. I can think of a couple solutions to this problem. One solution is for her to use a VPN. Another option would be for her to install the Google Chrome plugin called “Unblock YouKu.” We’re based in Beijing, China, so any readers that are in Japan and have more information on this subject are welcome to make suggestions here.

      • 4linuxfun says:

        I have write a tool for youku upload by youku API.
        It’s write by tcl script.It can be used to upload video from tcl script or any operation system that can use tcl.
        github website:

  4. Esther says:

    Hi I have a problem. I was trying to upload a video of me doing a song cover. But I couldnt click save because the tag box kept being highlighted in red. Help please?

    • Keoni Everington (华武杰) says:


      Did you enter any tags in the tag box? If you didn’t, you should at least for SEO purposes. It’s probably a required field.

    • gasty01 says:

      hiii….me also i get same problem….????help plzzz

  5. Emily Pritchard says:

    I’m trying to upload videos to Youku and I keep getting an error message. I’m using it on Chrome with Google translate.

    I select “Science and Technology” as my category, and it tells me “Please select a category” when I click Save, even though I already have.

    I also get an error with the tags. If I try to upload without tags I get “Please fill out the label tag with a space or a comma-separated”. And if I add tags I get “Single label a maximum of 12 characters” – I’m putting in tags in English.

    • Keoni Everington (华武杰) says:

      Emily, the author of this blog, Charlie Custer, no longer works at our magazine. Furthermore, we are not a customer support desk for YouKu. I’ve never encountered the problems you are describing with Chrome (including translation mode) or Firefox. I suggest, switching to a different browser such as Firefox and closely following the instructions Charlie lists above. He lists the names of everything in Chinese characters, so you shouldn’t need a translation tool, with the exception of selecting a category, in which case, just copy and paste that section into Google Translate to figure out what is what before choosing a category.

    • Ian says:

      I am having the same problem…

      Ever figure it out?

      Can’t save the video description, title and tags.

      • Ian says:

        Seemed to figure it out…

        Turn off the translate and enter the category in Chinese and then add a few Chinese keywords and that looks like it worked as I was finally able to save the video.

  6. Keoni Everington (华武杰) says:

    Dear Readers,

    Follow the instructions of this blog to the line and you shouldn’t have any issues. If you do, please see YouKu’s help center here It gives detailed instructions on configuring your browser such as enabling temporary internet files, cookies, automatic Flash player updates, Active X, Java, Javascript,. Technical issues between YouKu and your browser or operating system are far beyond the scope of this blog or the purpose of our Website.

  7. gasty01 says:

    Enter some tags to help people search for your video. Separate tags with a space, not commas.

    i dont understand how to do this…..can u give me and video is a music that i play i want to put on youku…only about tag i cannot… ..plzzz thks…

  8. Fin O'Suilleabhain says:

    This post looks really helpful but when I tried I couldn’t get started because YouKu wouldn’t accept my (or indeed any email address). I went to Help as suggested but not one word of English did I find. Without any knowledge of a Chinese language is there any point me persisting, would you say? A shame if not, because I’d love to share my video with those in China who would be interested in it.

  9. Fin O'Suilleabhain says:

    I couldn’t get started because YouKu wouldn’t accept any email address I put in. Without any knowledge of a Chinese language is there any point me going any further?

    • Keoni Everington (华武杰) says:

      Believe it or not, we’re not the tech support desk for YouKu and the author of this blog is long gone. However, out of the kindness of my heart, I’ll try to help you. First of all, make sure you follow all the steps described in the blog above after entering your email. Be sure that the check box below the image is checked (this says you’ve read their terms of use agreement) and then click the button below that says “完成注册” to finish your registration.Try a browser like Firefox or Google Chrome that has an auto translation feature. Or just copy and paste elements you don’t understand into Google Translate. YouKu was designed for Chinese users in the China market, so they don’t have an English version.

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  11. michelle says:

    this is helpful!

    Do you know how to upload videos to YOUKU via a URL link only?
    Is it possible?

  12. michelle says:

    how do i upload a video with only a URL for YOUKU?

  13. Carlos says:


    I am an artist and some people stole a couple of my videos and uploaded to Youku, some of them I don’t want them online anymore.

    Is there any way to contact Youku, report the video or delete it?

    Thank you in advance!

  14. Garth Hewitt says:

    Hi! Thank you for this post. Really helpful information. I’m looking to upload short yoga video tutorials for my students in China. I live in the U.S. and travel to teach. Would this be the best site to upload this kind of content? Can I share the link to my video through a chat site like WeChat for my students to then go and view it? Or should I be looking at another video sharing site? I’m trying to navigate and am very unfamiliar with the platforms in China. A student told me that something called qq or tencent was a good site and I should try there but another one recommended youku. What is your advise? Thank you. Appreciate it!

    • Ethan Yun says:


      Your best bets are probably to upload to Youku or Tudou and then share them through Wechat and Weibo.

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