Roll Your Own YouTube/Flickr with MediaGoblin

Everyone has wasted an afternoon on YouTube clicking through videos of talking cats, screaming goats and bad-lip-reading renditions of popular movies. Heck, there are plenty of YouTube videos of me doing odd and silly things as well. (Does anyone remember 'Buntu Family Theater?) For important family videos, however, I much prefer to control my own data. I've tried over the years to keep an archive of home movies and such in a folder on a server somewhere, but they never get seen because getting to them in inconvenient. That's where MediaGoblin comes in.

Screenshot from

MediaGoblin is an open-source Web-based application that allows you to host audio, video and photographic media on your own server. It still allows that media to be easily viewed via the Web, however, so you get the convenience of YouTube with the security of hosting files yourself.

Hosting your own local version of YouTube might not be your cup of tea, but for me, it's a great compromise between convenience and data privacy. If you want to give MediaGoblin a try, head over to and download a copy today. Or, check out one of the many publicly hosted installations to see if you like the interface. The screenshot here is from and includes an interview that hits home for nerds like us!


Shawn Powers is a Linux Journal Associate Editor. You might find him on IRC, Twitter, or training IT pros at CBT Nuggets.