Roles in Zoom Webinars

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.


Participate in Zoom Webinars

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 
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

Learn more about managing attendees and panelists in webinars.

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 



Record to cloud  
Record locally✔* 


Live stream

Live stream on Facebook    
Live stream on Workplace    
Live stream on YouTube    
Custom live stream