Online access to our three television channels (C‑SPAN, C‑SPAN2, and C‑SPAN3) is reserved for cable or satellite TV customers.

Anyone can access all federal government events here.

C‑SPAN is improving our internet presence and adapting some of our digital policies with several goals in mind: First, we're aiming to better serve our online customers with enhanced design, improved video quality, and mobile-friendly distribution. At the same time, we're updating a key digital policy to help preserve C‑SPAN's business model in a rapidly-changing video distribution marketplace. All of these changes are part of an effort to safeguard and expand the important public service mission which guides C‑SPAN operations.

C‑SPAN is committed to a website experience that gives everyone easy access to the most comprehensive video coverage of official Washington, our interview programs and our popular BookTV and American History TV offerings. These changes help us improve your free online C‑SPAN experience while preserving our three TV channels for cable and satellite customers whose monthly bills help pay for C‑SPAN operations.

Here is some of what's happening at C‑ during 2014.


  • C‑ has been redesigned to emphasize easier access to the videos of key Washington and public policy events of the day, combined with full access to more than 220,000 hours of past political video from C‑SPAN's video library.
  • We've improved search functionality for our video library. We want to make it easier to research, view, clip, and share C‑SPAN video - all at no cost, as a public service to you.
  • Now, we are mobile friendly. You can access C‑ on your smart phone or tablet and watch C‑SPAN video on the go.

New Policy:

  • Real-time online access to C‑SPAN, C‑SPAN2, and C‑SPAN3 is now available only to verified customers of C‑SPAN's cable and satellite affiliates. A simple sign-in on the "TV Networks" page of C‑ with your cable or satellite company credentials is all that's needed to watch any of our three TV channels in real time. (This process is similar to what's now required to access most other "TV Everywhere" programs or channels.)

What's Not Changing:

  • Livestreams of all federal government events covered by C‑SPAN will continue to be available online with easy access from our home page--no sign-in necessary. Watch live (or on demand) all House and Senate debates, committee hearings, events from the executive branch, the courts, and election coverage--plus C‑SPAN's signature, viewer-interactive, interview program Washington Journal--via C‑'s easy-to-spot highlighted area, "Congress, White House & the Courts," on our homepage.
  • All other C‑SPAN programming, including daily non-government event coverage, and programs from C‑SPAN2's BookTV and C‑SPAN3's American History TV continue to be accessible without sign-in, on an on demand basis. You'll find them easily through direct links on our home page, or by searching our video library


What is changing on the website and what will I be able to watch online through C‑
Our website has been re-designed to provide higher quality video streams, enhanced search capabilities, and responsive display across platforms and devices. All visitors to C‑ will continue to have access to live (and on demand) coverage of federal government proceedings and all C‑SPAN programs in the Video Library. The live feeds of the three C‑SPAN television channels are now only viewable with verification of your pay television credentials--sign-in on the "TV Networks" page.

If I am a cable or satellite TV subscriber how does this affect me?
It doesn't affect you very much. It means only that if you want to watch the actual live feeds of our three C‑SPAN television channels on our website you will have to sign-in to verify that you are a cable or satellite subscriber. If you currently subscribe to cable or satellite and can watch C‑SPAN on your TV, you will be able to easily verify your cable or satellite subscription and also watch our TV channels online.

What if I don't subscribe to cable or satellite?
You are able to use C‑ to watch our live coverage of all Federal government events. All visitors to C‑ will have access to House and Senate debates, committee hearings, Executive Branch events, courts coverage and the Washington Journal--live and in the clear, without needing to sign-in or verify as a cable or satellite subscriber. You will also continue to have free access to our online Video Library containing more than 200,000 hours of all current and past political video from C‑SPAN on demand to watch anytime, anywhere.

How do I verify my cable or satellite subscription?
Find the "TV Networks" icon on C‑'s home page. When there, please select your cable or satellite provider from the list provided and follow the prompts to proceed to the live streams. You'll need both a customer ID and password from your provider to verify yourself as a customer.

Where do I find my username and password?
As a cable or satellite video customer, you likely have already been given an Account Username and Password by your TV provider. If you don't already know yours, visit your provider's website or call their customer service line to get that information.

Will a MyC‑SPAN account work for verification?
No. Your MyC‑SPAN account allows you to bookmark online content, receive email notifications and save your clips on C‑ Verification is a separate process confirming your subscription with a C‑SPAN affiliate (cable or satellite company).

Is there an additional charge for verifying to watch the C‑SPAN TV feeds?
No, there are no additional charges. Live streams of all three C‑SPAN television networks will be available at no additional cost to customers who receive C‑SPAN as part of their television subscription from a cable or satellite provider.

Are the live C‑SPAN television channels mobile-friendly?
Yes. All new C‑ video is designed to be responsive to your desktops, smart phones or tablets. You are able to watch video on C‑ in your home, at your office, or on the go--anywhere, anytime.

Why does C‑SPAN require a cable or satellite subscription to watch your channels online?
Despite some people's misperceptions, C‑SPAN does not receive any support from the federal government. Nor do we accept advertising or underwriting. All of our revenue comes from a license fee paid to C‑SPAN by the cable and satellite companies that provide our programming services to their video customers. Requiring verification for the live feeds of our three cable channels reserves these channels for customers who are supporting them through their monthly cable or satellite bills. Over time, this policy will enhance what we can provide the general public overall, and helps preserve the important public service mission which guides all C‑SPAN operations.

C‑SPAN Minimum System Requirements
Flash Minimum Requirements
Desktop: Flash Player 11.2 or higher
Browser Minimum Requirements
  • Desktop - with Flash
    • Firefox 28
    • Chrome 34
    • Internet Explorer 9 (Windows Only)
    • Safari 6 (Mac Only)
  • Mobile
    • iOS
    • Android
OS Minimum Requirements
  • Windows
    Microsoft® Windows® Server 2008 (32 bit), Windows Vista® (32 bit), Windows 7 (32 bit and 64 bit), Windows 8 (32 bit and 64 bit), or Windows Server 2012 (64 bit)
  • Mac
    OSX 10.6+
  • Linux
    Red Hat® Enterprise Linux® (RHEL) 5.6 or later (32 bit and 64 bit), openSUSE® 11.3 or later (32 bit and 64 bit), or Ubuntu 10.04 or later (32 bit and 64 bit)
  • iOS
    5.1, 6.1, 7.0+
  • Android
    2.3, 4.1, 4.2, 4.4+