A video clip hosting is a service that allows individuals to upload video clips to an Internet website. The video host will then store the video on its server, and show the individual different types of code to allow others to view this video. The website, mainly used as the video hosting website, is usually called the video sharing website.

Because many users do not have unlimited web space, either as a paid service, or through an ISP offering, video hosting services are becoming increasingly popular, especially with the explosion in popularity of blogs, forums, and other interactive pages. The mass market for camera phones has increased the supply of user-generated video. Traditional methods of personal video distribution, such as making a DVD to show to friends at home, are unsuited to the low resolution and high volume of camera phone clips. In contrast, current broadband Internet connections are well suited to serving the quality of video shot on mobile phones. Most people do not own web servers, and this has created demand for user-generated video clip hosting.

Purpose of video hosts is to save bandwidth costs, creating a common place, make a hassle-free experience, where uploading a video and streaming or embedding would normally require advanced programming knowledge. It is now commonly achieved through a web browser, with little programming experience.

Before Vimeo and then YouTube changed the way videos were hosted on the web, the first internet video hosting site was shareyourworld. Just like the modern hosting services, it allowed users to upload clips or full videos in different file formats. It was founded in 1997 by Chase Norlin and it ran till 2001 where it closed due to budget and bandwidth problem.

Some web sites prefer to use open video formats such as Ogg or WebM. On some web sites, users share entire films by breaking them up into segments that are about the size of the video length limit imposed by the site. An emerging practice is for users to obfuscate the titles of feature-length films that they share by providing a title that is recognizable by humans but will not match on standard search engines.

A more recent application of the video hosting services is in the mobile web 2.0 arenas, where video and other mobile content can be delivered to, and easily accessed by mobile devices. While some video-hosting services have developed means by which video can be watched on mobile devices, mobile-oriented web-based frontends for video hosting services that possess equal access and capability to desktop oriented web services have yet to be developed. Mobile live streaming software called Qik allows the users to upload videos from their cell phones to the internet. Videos will be stored on the servers and can be watched from both the mobile devices and the website.

In general video clip hosting services refers to websites or software where users can distribute their video clips. Other sites such as file hosting services image hosting services and social network services might support video sharing as an enhancement to their primary mission, but in general, they are not listed here. Many services have options for private sharing and other publication options. Video sharing services can be classified into several categories, among them: user generated video sharing websites, video sharing platform / white label providers and web based video editing. Some services may charge, but the large majority of video sharing sites offer their service for free. Some websites offer commercialization features, such as partnership programs and the ability for users to offer pay-per-view for their videos.

Examples of video clip hosting websites are EngageMedia, ExpoTV, Funnyordie, Flickr, Fotki, BlogTV, Veoh, YouTube etc.