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What Are YouTube Channel Memberships?



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If you’re a frequent YouTube viewer, you may have heard the term ‘Memberships’. It sounds similar to subscriptions, but memberships are very different. We explain what this is and help you decide if you should join it.

What is a YouTube membership?

Introduced in 2018, YouTube membership allows channels to charge a monthly fee for additional ‘benefits’. If you’re familiar with services like Patreon, membership is a similar concept.

YouTube channels with a membership must offer members at least one ̵

6;benefit’. There are four different benefits that can be offered:

  • Only for community posts members: Posts in YouTube’s Community tab that only members can see.
  • Members only videos: Private videos only for members to watch and comment on.
  • Live streams for members only: Live streams for members only.
  • Live chats for members only: During a public live stream, only members can participate in the chat.

In addition, YouTube gives members a badge that makes them stand out in the comments and live chats. These badges indicate how long they have been in the channel, membership level and the channel can create its own custom badges.

Finally, a channel can create its own custom emoji that members can use in comments and live chats.

How Much Do YouTube Memberships Cost?

YouTube Membership Benefits
Example membership prices and perks Manufactured workshop

There are many different pricing tiers for memberships, and prices vary by country. It is up to the channel to decide how many levels they want to offer. In the US, the monthly price can range from $ 0.99 to $ 99.99.

The YouTube channel also controls which tiers can access specific benefits. They can offer one price for all member-only content, or split things up so that certain benefits require more expensive memberships. It is entirely up to the individual channel, and will not be the same for every channel.

YouTube Subscriptions vs. Memberships: What’s the Difference?

Subscriptions and memberships are unrelated. If you subscribe to a YouTube channel, you will not be able to access the membership benefits. You don’t even have to be subscribed to a channel to join. A subscription simply means that you follow the channel and their videos will appear in the Subscription tab.

Which YouTube channels offer memberships?

membership join
“Join” button on a channel with memberships Manufactured workshop

Memberships are completely optional, but not every channel is eligible to enable the feature. To offer memberships, the YouTube channel must:

  • Have more than 1,000 subscribers
  • Join the YouTube Partner Program
  • The owner must be over 18 years old
  • Be based in an eligible country
  • Cannot be set as ‘made for kids’
  • Do not have a significant number of unsuitable videos

If a channel meets all of these requirements, it can offer memberships. They will have to continue to follow YouTube membership guidelines and requirements to continue offering the feature.

RELATED: Why YouTube Videos “Made for Kids” Have Limited Features


Simply put, a YouTube channel membership is a way to directly support the channel and get additional content for a monthly price. If there’s a channel that you especially enjoy and it offers a membership, that’s something to consider.

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