Digital Media Concepts/The video hosting site BitChute

BitChute is a video hosting service that uses WebTorrent to stream videos that presents its self as a free speech platform where users are free to express their views regardless of how their views will be seen by others. The site is often associated with the "Far right" due to the political content that is frequently uploaded by its conservative users to the site[2][3]. The site allows any content on it so long as the content doesn't break the law, and isn't sexually explicit.[4]

Type of siteOnline video platform
Available inEnglish
HeadquartersNewbury Berkshire, England United Kingdom
CreatorRay Vahey
Alexa rankIncrease 4,462 (October 3, 2019)[1]
Current statusActive



Started in January 2017 by Ray Vahey. According to Vahey “The idea [for creating the site came] from seeing the increased levels of censorship by the large social media platforms in the last couple of years. Banning’s, demonetization, and tweaking algorithms to send certain content into obscurity and, wanting to do something about it”[5]. That something became BitChute. The site was banned by PayPal in 2018 for unknown reasons despite being an account holder since 2016. PayPal has never given a reason for the banning although Vahey suggest the banning was politically motivated[6].


Web/BitTorrent network

BitChute uses peer-to-peer WebTorrent technology which is a torrent client that works in the web browser. It's completely written in JavaScript and also uses WebRTC for peer-to-peer transport of data. Since WebTorrents are designed for moving larger files, due to it using WebRTC protocol instead of the TCP/uTP protocol used by BitTorrents, making it the most suited for video playback. WebTorrents use the WebRTC protocol to allow the transfer of data from one browser to another essentially creating a server to server connection. User can then use this connection to view videos from other users via the link posted on BitChute. Unlike server-based video hosting platforms, videos completely download to the user’s browser before playing, depending on how many views the video has determines how long this process will take. Once downloaded the video is then stored in the users browser cache, and can be viewed again without needing to be re-downloaded so long as the users cashe hasn’t been cleared [7].

BitChute limits video resolution to 480p, although frame rate is not limited. Even 120 frames per second are supported.

The duration of the processing period after uploading has finished, which is indicated as “Your video is being processed...”, is highly inconsistent. It may take between minutes and a day, or fail altogether.

Advantages of WebTorrents


There are several advantages to using WebTorrents as a service. WebTorrents don't require a client/server, essentially cutting out the middle-man, which significantly reduces cost. It allows for a decentralized platform; the users are the servers. WebTorrents do not require browser plugins, extensions, or installations from the end user. Unlike BitTorrents which do require end users to have specialized software in order to run them. The WebRTC protocol used by WebTorrents are compatible in any web browser. The more users there are the more efficient the site runs, and It works with VPNs.[8]

Disadvantages of WebTorrents


There are some disadvantages to using WebTorrents as a service. If there are no 'seeds' you won’t be able to view the content. Torrents can take a toll on your bandwidth, however users with fast internet connections usually don't have to worry about this. Anyone can see your public IP address, making VPNs a necessity if users want to protect their privacy.[9]

Cost Saving Benefits


Running a video hosting service is quite expensive. It cost an estimated 6.35 billion USD a year to run Youtube[10] (the biggest video hosting service in the world), while it cost an estimated 43,530 EUR (47,213 USD) a year to run BitChute[11]. BitChute gets around the heavy cost of video streaming by using WebTorrent technology to instead stream video from its users rather than having to use its own servers.



Vahey[12] .



  1. "". Retrieved 2019-10-09.
  2. Alexander, Julia (2018-03-07). "Controversial YouTubers head to alternative platforms in wake of 'purge'". Polygon. Retrieved 2019-10-08.
  3. "BitChute". Wikipedia. 2019-10-08. 
  4. "BitChute is a peer-to-peer social video platform". BitChute. Retrieved 2019-10-08.
  5. "BitChute is a BitTorrent-Powered YouTube Alternative". TorrentFreak. 2017-01-29. Retrieved 2019-10-09.
  6. > "bitchute-youtube-alternative-cries-foul-over-appar". 2018-11-14. Retrieved 2019-10-09.
  7. "WebTorrent FAQ". Retrieved 2019-10-09.
  8. "WebTorrent FAQ". Retrieved 2019-10-09.
  9. "Torrents Explained - Benefits, Disadvantages, Alternatives". The VPN Guru. 2016-04-24. Retrieved 2019-10-09.
  10. "• YouTube by the Numbers (2019): Stats, Demographics & Fun Facts". 2019-09-04. Retrieved 2019-10-09.
  11. "Bit Chute Limited - Company Profile - Endole". Retrieved 2019-10-09.
  12. Andy. (2017, January 29). BitChute is a BitTorrent-Powered YouTube Alternative. Retrieved from