Podcast inserting local commercials?

I am using Pocket Cast to download and listen to podcasts. One of them is playing what I think are local ads (I’m in Arizona and hearing ads for Arizona services). This is normally at the beginning or end and it part of the download…I don’t think it is dynamically inserted while I am listening.

Is this possible?

Leo mentioned they were doing something like this for one of the podcasts, TWIG I think.

Hmmm. So is PocketCast somehow broadcasting my location to a podcast server?

The podcast server is probably deducing your location from your IP address. Doesn’t need anything from the podcast client for this to happen, in order for the data to get back to you you have to give your IP address in the request. The server would just do a match against a look-up table which comes back as “Arizona” (probably a bit more precise than that). So it’s probably not the podcast client’s fault.

Some people use a VPN if they don’t want their real location given, you can choose where you want to emerge from the VPN and the IP adress the server will see will be for that location.

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Thanks. I’m not overly concerned with this. Just curious since I think I’d rather have local ads than generic ones.

Right now, the two episodes of TWiG that are in Megaphone (the platform TWiT uses that does this) are NOT tagged for ads. (However, this week’s will be.) We tested with Triangulation and Valley of Genius, so you may have heard a dynamically inserted ad if you were listening to either of those retired shows.

…or was this happening in Pocket Casts with a non-TWiT show? If it’s not TWiT, then I don’t know what may be inserting the ad. If you can point me to the show, I can probably figure out what’s being used to insert the ads dynamically.


I’ve noticed it happening occasionally when I listen to the Vergecast, got a local university ad recently.

Also using PocketCasts as my player of choice.

Is there someplace besides this thread we can register dissatisfaction with the use of Dynamic Ad Insertion? I’m happy to listen to ads read by hosts, for products and services that @Leo thinks would be of interest to listeners, but I don’t want TWiT to turn into local radio with a bunch of ham-fisted ad insertions. I’d hope that TWiT would explore subscriptions or other monetization options before tampering with the listening experience.

They gotta pay the bills some kinda way man. Leo stated that sponsors are down…


To be clear, Pocketcasts isn’t doing it. It’s not the podcatcher, it’s the show itself. We host it on megaphone, when megaphone sees your ip it builds a show with geo-targeted advertising on the fly.

We are not adding ad positions. It’s the same number of ads as always, but in shows that aren’t sold out (chronically TWiG) we might insert an ad in the unsold ad position. They still may be host read. And they might not. We’re testing it. We have complete right of refusal for any advertiser, so it won’t be crap ads.

I understand it’s not how TWiT started out (although to be fair we started out without ads entirely for the first few years), but it might be the only way forward in the age of Covid (and the rapidly ad-technified podcast world). Such is life.


This is what I was looking for. Thanks. Very interesting and I would prefer a local ad than a generic one. And, the podcast I am talking about seems to put in at the very front and end of the podcast. When it is added at the end, there is a very long time of silence (maybe 10 seconds) until the ad comes up. I guess that podcast isn’t being edited correctly to take out the dead space at the end!

Anyway, interesting to know. Thanks!


Leo, do what you gotta do to keep doing what you are doing. We’ll adjust.


I checked their feed and they’re also using Megaphone for dynamic ad insertion.


I’m all for selling ad space where ever you can. I enjoy TWIG and would hate to see it go because you refused to let someone insert an ad in unsold ad space. In the age of COVID, i respect you @Leo for doing what you need to do to keep the lights on and the show rolling.


one needs to do what one needs to do to keep the business viable and strong!! :+1:

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