Roles in Zoom Webinars

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There are multiple roles available for a webinar: host, cohost, panelist, and attendees. The role that you have in the webinar will be designated by the host.

The host of the webinar is the user who the webinar is scheduled under. They have full permissions to manage the webinar, panelists, and attendees. There can only be one host of a webinar. The host can do things like stop and start the webinar, mute panelists, stop panelists' video, remove attendees from the webinar, and more.

Co-hosts share many of the controls that hosts have, allowing the co-host to manage the administrative side of the webinar, such as managing attendees or starting/stopping the recording. The host must assign a co-host. Co-hosts cannot start a webinar. If a host needs someone else to be able to start the webinar, they can assign an alternative host.

Panelists are full participants in a webinar. They can view and send video, screen share, annotate, etc. You must be assigned panelist permissions by the webinar host. The host can also disable some features for panelists, including starting video, sharing your screen, and recording. Learn how to add and invite panelists as a webinar host.

Attendees are view-only participants who can be unmuted if the host chooses. Their view of the webinar is controlled by the host. They can interact with the host and the panelists through the Q&A and the chat. Learn about joining a webinar as an attendee.

Prerequisites for roles in Zoom Webinars

Comparison of controls

The following table compares the webinar controls available to the host, co-hosts, and panelists. To learn more about each feature, click the embedded links in the table or see Host and Co-Host Controls in a Meeting.


  • Features with an asterisk (*) can be disable by the host.
  • Some features are dependent on certain prerequisites. If you do not see a feature, review the article to see if your account meets those prerequisites.

Participate in Zoom Webinars

  Host Co-host Panelist Attendee
Join during practice session
(see note)
Start the broadcast    
Mute/unmute themselves  
Start/stop their own video ✔*  
View attendee list  
Share screen  
Request or give remote control  
Chat ✔*
Save chat  
Ask questions in Q&A      
View All Q&A and respond  
Create or edit polls      
Start polling    
Answer polls     ✔*
Assign someone to enter closed captions      
Enter closed captions ✔* ✔*  
Raise hand    
Use call-out to join audio by phone  
End webinar      

Note: Co-hosts cannot be assigned ahead of time. If you would like to designate someone as a co-host, invite them to the webinar as a panelist and then promote them to a co-host. Alternatively, you can assign them as an alternative host. Alternative hosts are able to start or join a practice session.


Manage participants

  Host Co-host Panelist Attendee
Mute or unmute attendees    
Stop panelist's video    
Ask a panelist to start video    
Spotlight a Video    
Promote attendee to panelist    
Demote from panelist to attendee    
Change attendees' view    
Change who attendees can chat with    
Remove attendees    
Allow attendees to talk    
Assign Co-host Permission      
Put panelist on hold      
Invite others to join webinar  



  Host Co-host Panelist Attendee
Record to cloud    
Record locally ✔*  


Live stream

  Host Co-host Panelist Attendee
Live stream on Facebook      
Live stream on Workplace      
Live stream on YouTube      
Custom live stream      

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