Users and Permissions

Users are the people you invite to access your account. Learn about how to add them, and what permissions you can grant them, here.

Caroline F avatar
Written by Caroline F
Updated this week

Permissions in Wistia

Each contact in your Wistia account has a set of permissions. These permissions set out the rules for how they can interact with the files in your account.

In general, the permissions users can have are:

  • Create Folders

  • Upload & Download Media

  • Share Media/Folders/Channels

  • Track Analytics and Account Usage Levels

  • Create New Users

  • Embed Media

There are four different kinds of users: Account Owner, Managers, Collaborators, and Viewers. Every account has one Account Owner, but everyone’s needs will be different in terms of how many Managers, Collaborators, and Viewers they have, or whether they add any at all. Let’s take a look at how each of these user types can interact with your Wistia account.

Account Owner Permissions

The Account Owner has the highest permissions of any user. There is only one Owner on each Account, which can be set from the “Account” tab of Account Settings.

Owners have access to anything a Manager or user does, but in addition, they can:

  • Monitor the usage of the account (bandwidth & videos)

  • Change the account logo, name, or URL

  • Connect/disconnect integrations

  • Create API keys

  • Purchase, upgrade, or downgrade a subscription

  • Change billing information

  • Cancel the Wistia account

Additionally, the Account Owner has the final say over who can access the videos hosted on Wistia. In context of the Wistia application, the “Owner” maintains the rights over all hosted content.


The Account Owner is the only user who can assign a new Account Owner, by transferring ownership to an existing Manager. If you are leaving your organization or handing over your Wistia account to a different person, we strongly recommend transferring ownership before you go.

Manager Permissions

Managers can do things like add folders, Channels, upload medias, and share content with new viewers. They can also control users, and create new groups.

Managers can:

  • Create and manage folders

  • Create and manage Channels

  • Create new viewers and manage their permissions

  • Add or remove managers

  • Upload media content

  • Access and connect Wistia integrations

  • Invite viewers to privately view folders

  • View tracking analytics for private video sharing in Private User Sessions

  • Embed media on external websites

  • View analytics for publicly shared videos

  • Receive email alerts for account activity

Viewers and Collaborators

Viewers and Collaborators are two types of users on your account who have limited permissions. Viewers have the most limited access: they can only see and play content in the folder and/or Channel they have access to.

Collaborators are users who have at least one additional permission in a given folder.

Something to note as you get into the wide world of Permissions & Wistia - Channels work a bit differently. Only Account Owners and Managers can create and customize Channels. You can then add Viewers to each Channel you create, or Collaborators (with full permissions in the Channel). You can read about this in more detail in our Channels documentation here.

Add Viewers

From within the “Privacy & Sharing Settings” modal, you can add users as either Viewers or Collaborators. Adding Viewers is a simple way to keep your folder Locked, but still allow a select group of people access to view your content.

From the folder page, select “Permissions” from the sidebar menu. You can also click on the padlock icon above the folder title. Enter the email addresses of the Viewers you’d like to add. You can also write your own message by clicking “Personalize email notification.”

Add viewer to folder

Make sure to click the Save button to add your Viewers, and you’re all set!

Alternatively, users can be created from the Users & Permissions page rather than from a specific folder or Channel. To do this, choose “Users & Permissions” from the “Account” dropdown menu.

From here, click “Add User.” A modal will appear that will let you either create a single new user or multiple new users simultaneously. Fill out the fields and hit “Save.”

Add new users


Users created in this manner will not have access to any content by default and must be explicitly shared on folders and/or Channels in your account.

To invite a user to one or more folders and/or channels from the users page, click the name of the user you’d like to edit. From here, click the “Add Folders” or “Add Channels” to give them access and set their permissions.

Add Collaborators

From within the “Privacy & Sharing Settings” modal, you can add users as either Viewers or Collaborators.

To add a Collaborator to your folder, select “Permissions” from the sidebar menu (or click the padlock above the folder title).

Enter the email address of the Collaborator you’d like to add, and set their permissions. You can add multiple Collaborators with the same permissions by entering a comma between the email addresses.

Add collaborators to folder

The moment you select any permission, the user’s status will turn to Collaborator!

The permissions available are:

  • Admin - this Collaborator has access to all other permissions listed below, as well as Move & Copy, full access to Privacy & Sharing Setting, and the ability to Delete the folder. Basically, they can do anything you can do.

  • Upload - this Collaborator can upload new content to the folder. They’ll also be able to Customize any content they upload.

  • Download - this Collaborator can download any content from the folder. They can also Export all media from the folder.

  • Share - this Collaborator can share the folder by embedding the content.

  • Stats - this Collaborator has access to any analytics collected from the media within the folder. This user can only access analytics for public plays to the media in the folder. (Stats of Viewers invited to folders are housed in Private User Sessions, and are only available to the Account Owner and Managers.)

Below is a full list of Collaborator permissions we’ve given to specific folders. These are live examples of Unlocked folders. Some of the menus might look a little different to your Collaborators, but this should give you the gist.

User Page

The Users & Permissions page can be found under the “Account” dropdown menu.

User Page

The Account Owner and Managers can view all the account users and their permissions. Clicking on the user will show you the specific folders, Channels, user groups and private user sessions that the user has access to.

User Groups

User groups are collections of users that can be managed and treated as a single user for setting and updating permissions on folders.

By sharing a folder with a single group, all of the users in the group will be given access to a folder. If you add a user to a group, they’ll automatically have the same permissions the rest of the group has.

How to create user groups

You can create user groups from the Users & Permissions page, which can be found under the “Account” menu.

There are two main ways to add users to a user group. Both methods assume you’ve already created your group, so make sure you do that first by choosing “New group” from the “Actions” menu.

Create a New group

If you want to add existing users to an existing group, select the users you wish to add to the group by checking the box next to their name. Once you have selected everyone you’d like to add to the group, choose “Add to group” from the “Actions” menu. That will let you select a group; click “Submit” to save your changes.

add multiple users to a group at once

You can also create new users and add them to a group as a single action.

Choose “Add user,” then select the Multiple Users tab. That will let you enter a list of email addresses, separated by commas or line breaks, and then choose a group for those users to be part of.

Add new users to a group

When you’re ready, click “Save” and the users will be created and immediately added to the group.

Private User Sessions

You can see viewing session data, including heatmaps, for your users on the Private User Sessions page, which can be found under "Settings".

Bear in mind that signed-in users’ views will only appear there and not on a media’s Analytics page.

Removing access for a user

Sometimes, you may need to remove a user from one or more folders and/or Channel, or even remove them from your account altogether. To remove access, click into “Permissions” on the folder or Channel page. There, you’ll see an X on each user’s row that you can click to remove them.

To delete a user from your account, visit the Users & Permissions page. There, select the user you need to delete, and click “Delete” from the “Actions” menu.

Delete a user from an account

This will revoke all permissions to any folders that this person had, and they will only be able to access content that you make available to the general public. Deleting a user will not delete any content that they uploaded - it will continue playing and behave just like content uploaded by other users.

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