Using Web Tokens to Control Podcast Advertising

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This article is for: podcast producers, station technicians, player/streaming developers.
Using: Triton Digital Podcast Services.
Task: use web tokens to control podcast advertising for streaming podcasts.


The Triton Digital Podcasting Service supports secure tokens, compliant with the JSON Web Token (JWT) and JSON Web Signature (JWS) RFCs, when requesting podcasts. These can be used to:

  • Provide access control (i.e., restrict the stream to authorized/logged-in users);
  • Provide trusted and obfuscated targeting for injected ads;
  • Vary the ad load for different levels of users (e.g., fewer ads for premium customers, etc.)

Details about implementing the secure token can be found in the Triton Digital Streaming Guide and the Triton Digital Secure Token document (available through your Triton Digital account manager). When it comes to podcasting, this mechanism can be used to control some aspects of advertising for podcasts that are delivered directly through your custom player (either a web player or an app).

For example, you could use the an attribute to deliver advertising-free podcasts to registered listeners who are logged into your player site. Non-logged in listeners, or listeners who connect via an aggregator or other third-party method will receive the podcast with stitched-in ads.

Alternatively, you could use the advertising attribute to prevent the stitching of pre-roll ads into your podcasts in order to use your on-demand ad service (such as Tap or a2x) to send a pre-roll ad as a separate file from the podcast, whose impression is recorded immediately. This is followed by the podcast file, which could have stitched mid-roll or post-roll ads (or not, as you prefer).

Note: to use the advertising attribute, your station's programming scheme must be set by Triton Digital to "Podcast." Speak with your Triton Digital Solutions Specialist about this.