Articles on: Creators - Getting Started

How do I start a live stream?

Live stream enables creators to create a post that contains a video stream and chat that occurs in real-time so supporters can watch and chat with the creator and other supporters in the community, usually centered around a topic or purpose, i.e. a Q & A session with the creator.

To view a tutorial video on how to Live Stream on Locals, click here

Click the title to go directly to the corresponding section, or keep scrolling to start from the beginning:

How to Create a Live Stream Post
How to Start a Live Stream Now
How to Start a Scheduled Live Stream
Stream Controls
When a Live Stream Ends
Switch to Supporter Only Mid-Stream
Browser Compatibilities

How to Create a Live Stream Post

Click on the Create a Live Stream button under the Post section

Create a live stream

You will be taken to a separate flow to enter the details of your live stream, the first step is to enter the title and a description (same as a post title and description). You may also attach a PDF or add a poll to this live stream post.

Step 1

On step 2, you have the publication settings for this live stream post
Supporter-only - If you want to enable supporter only for a live stream, please refer to the section near the bottom called Switch to Supporter Only Mid-Stream
Pin post - pinned to the top of the newsfeed and duration
Schedule this live stream - if you want to go live now, leave the toggle off; if you want to schedule this live stream to go live later, switch the toggle to set your time

If you want to show a video loop for scheduled streams while members wait, upload a pre-live video.
Notify users - send out an email notification to your members; if you're a team member, this also includes push notifications
Thumbnail - you can upload a custom thumbnail to appear on the video after the recording or use the default thumbnail (if you've uploaded one), or if you have no uploaded anything, your live stream videos will use your community icon as the thumbnail by default

Step 2

Publish your live stream post

How to Start a Live Stream Now

If you decided to Go Live Now, you will be directed to the post page where you can start the stream.
If this is the first time you're going live, you may need to give your browser permission to access your camera and microphone. In which case you will see a screen like this
Give access
2a. If you click on Give Access, your browser will show a prompt to ask for access. Make sure you click allow. For example:

After you've given access, the screen will ask you to start the stream (you will also be able to see a preview of your camera before officially starting the stream)
Start stream

If you need to switch your source, click on the camera/microphone icon in the top left corner

How to Start a Scheduled Live Stream

If you decided to schedule a live stream for a later time (keep in mind times are based on Eastern Time), the live stream post will be posted with a banner that shows everyone when the live stream is scheduled to go live.
Scheduled stream post
You can then come back to the post when it is time to start the live stream. If you come back before the start time, you will not be able to start it until it's time. Though supporters are free to chat on the live chat before the video stream goes live.
Once it's time to go live, similar to going live now, if it's your first time, you will need to give your browser access to your camera and microphone. Refer to the instructions above.
Once access is given, the screen will ask you to start the stream
Start stream

Stream Controls

There are a couple of things to note on the stream screen once you start a live stream

Live stream post

Once you are ready to end the stream, you can click the end stream button to end it
Mute button allows you to mute your microphone
Time elapsed counter show how long your live stream has been live since you started the stream
Time remaining counter shows long much time you have left (time restrictions are currently in place depending on your community tier). If you run over the time allotted, the stream will automatically end.
You will also have a live chat on the side of your stream which functions the same as a standalone live chat post

Camera/mic select

If you want to select a different camera or mic source for the live stream, click on the camera/mic icon in the upper left corner of the live stream which will open an option to select different sources for your camera and microphone.

When a Live Stream Ends

As mentioned above, there are 2 ways in which a live stream can end, if you end it yourself or if the time limit is up. Once the stream ends, the live chat will become unavailable and your live stream will start to process into a video that can be watched back by members who missed the live stream. The live stream video will act as other content videos and can be placed into playlists later.

Processing live stream

Finished processing

Switch to Supporter Only Mid-Stream

The mid-stream supporter only feature allows creators to start a stream for the general community (free) and then switch it mid-stream into a locked stream, prompting non-supporters to support in order to continue watching and participate in the stream. This is great if you're looking to only provide exclusive content on Locals while streaming on multiple platforms.

You will see this option at the top of your live stream.

Only for supporters

The toggle will be available to switch on 30 sec after you've started your live stream but you can turn it on anytime after this.

Once you've enabled the mid-stream support only toggle, all non-supporters viewing the live stream will have 60 seconds to support before they are cut off (so make sure you wait until the countdown ends to start talking about your exclusive content). You will see the same countdown as the members so you know when it's officially enabled.

You can only enable this once during the stream. Once you've enabled it, you cannot turn it back off.

Countdown to Supporter Only Viewing

As for non-supporters, they will see a countdown prompting them to support before the countdown ends. (Existing supporters are unaffected, they will see the live stream as is and without interruptions)

Countdown for non-supporters

Once the countdown ends, they will be locked out of the video and live chat.

Locked out

When you end the stream, once the replay is available, non-supporters will be able to view the free portion of the live stream as a preview and will also be prompted to support if they want to watch the entire replay.

Preview for non-supporters

Browser Compatibilities

Mac OS - Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Edge
Windows - Chrome, Firefox, Edge
Chrome OS - Chrome

Please note these are the official supported OS/browsers on desktop. If you use another OS/browser on desktop, live stream may not function optimally or at all.

Updated on: 04/10/2022