Playing Movies or Video Clips in Zoom

Copyright and Use for Videos

Before streaming a video on Zoom, is it highly recommended to first contact the Library to inquire about copyright and usage. There may be limitations for playing clips of videos or playing videos/movies through Zoom. This can apply to:

  • Playing a full-length movie through Zoom
  • Streaming a movie, television show, or video clip that is hosted on a streaming service.
    • One common example, the movie is on Netflix and it is being streamed through Zoom screen share.
    • This can apply to Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+, Crunchyroll, HBO, Starz, or any other online media service.

Contact the Library for questions on copying and usage for videos and movies.

How do I stream a video in Zoom?

In order to play in Zoom, the video will need to be played through a video player on the computer. This could be either Quicktime player or VLC player - each application is a free download online or may already be available on the computer. 

Quicktime or VLC will work to play video clips, dvds, and in some cases blu-rays - if playing multiple clips, it’s best to use the same application for all videos.

  • Mac: Quicktime or VLC
  • Windows: VLC Only
    • Quicktime is not available for Windows 10.

It is good to note that although we can try to improve the video quality, it is always possible that there may be a delay for the viewer. Running many additional process on the computer while playing the video may also cause a delay in either the video or in additional tasks on the computer.

The quality of the stream is also heavily dependent on Internet connection. In a scenario of a group all watching the same video at the same time, there may be a different delay for each viewer.

Screen Sharing

In order to improve the quality, it is better to share just the video screen in Zoom instead of the whole computer screen. ​​​​​​​

Open the video that you would like to play in VLC or Quicktime. Start the Zoom meeting and click on the green Share Screen button.

In the next window, you will be able to select which screen to share. The first “Screen” option will always share the entire window. To share the video specifically, look for VLC or Quicktime in the list. Click on the screen option to select it - it will turn blue.

After selecting the screen, check the boxes for Optimize for Video Clip and Share sound on the bottom left. This will ensure that the sound is played through the screen share and that all viewers can hear it.

Click on Share to share the screen and the video clip.

Additional Information and Help

For additional information, visit Zoom Support: Sharing or playing a video

If there are any technically issues or for additional help with sharing a video, contact the IT Helpdesk. 


Article ID: 137268
Thu 8/26/21 11:30 AM
Thu 8/26/21 11:36 AM