Future of Antennapod in peril?

Here in Denmark the public-service radio and broadcasting company (DR) just announced that they are starting to remove the free feeds for their podcasts. In the future one probably will have to use the official DR-app to listen to all their most popular podcasts.

According to DR they are doing this is to ensure that their podcasts (paid for entirely by the taxpayers) are freely available to everyone and not hidden behind a paywall in paid apps :thinking: Also by forcing people to use the DR-app to follow the popular podcasts, DR can promote the rest of their podcast collection more easily.

It seems to be yet another example of podcasters limiting the use of their feeds outside of a specific app. Free or paid. Kind of makes me worried for the future of Antennapod and similar apps. At least here in Denmark. In the top 10 list of the most popular podcasts here about half are by DR. The rest are also mostly locked inside separate apps.

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Seems like a counterintuitive thing to do. Remove free feeds to ensure its freely available for everyone.

Then again, I don’t think all podcasts will be paywalled in the near future. A lot of independent shows thrive through in show advertising and want to remain free.


Recently several of my favorite podcasts (other than from DR) has disappeared behind paywalls. It’s of course fair enough if that’s the way the creators can make a profit. Often the subscription is not terribly expensive but I hate having to install an new app for almost every podcast I want to follow.

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Its an annoyance I agree.

I had the same experience with Gimlet Media when they switched to Spotify. All their shows are now walled behind yet another app. In all honesty, I miss their shows but I am not ready to install that garbage app to listen to their shows.

I agree with how Wondery does it. They pay wall their premium feed behind a Wondery app. The free feed is still available and is ad supported. That I can support to be honest and gives us choices.


There is no podcast I listen to that I won’t stop listening to the very second it is restricted to a specific app.

Monetization is a solved problem, in my opinion. If you want to paywall premium feeds, provide private RSS for them like Patreon does.

If you can’t get an RSS feed for it, then it’s not a podcast. Full stop.


Howdy, Folks.
Please forgive my barging into your conversation. I was merely looking around in here when this caught my eye. Though it is in a country other than mine, I refuse to ignore the horrible occurrence you describe. Varying forms of that were forced into use by those in authority in many societies in the history of this world, ALL with very negative affects on citizenry & rights of the individuals comprising that society. We currently have a rampant overuse of program-exclusive apps (merely program launchers) pushed as marketing schemes of many non-related individual companies ignorant of what & why they’re doing. Rather than the devastating control this misuse propels, it is pushed as mere “marketeering”. Extremests on all political sides of governments have thrust it into the guts of the people they sought to control. Countries have gone to war to escape tyranny of the power-hungry madness evident in those who push this idea. Please do what you can to prevent such abusive evil.

I wouldn’t say “in peril” because there is abundance of podcast out there.

The monetization is a solved problem as well (private/logged-in feeds)

I ran into something similar with BBC’s “Friday Night Comedy”… they chose to delay public podcast by 4 weeks… Not that problematic but it’s a comedy show based on current events so listening to it 4 weeks after is somewhat odd. The move is obvious to force users to use BBC app but… people use aggregator apps for the convenience to have everything in one place (and most of the time having way more convenient UI)…

I admit “in peril” is probably too strong wording looking globally. Sorry. However, here in small Denmark where DR dominates the most popular podcasts I think they will hurt Antennapod and similar apps by pulling their feeds.

I don’t buy the DR argument that they are doing this so they wont be dependent on commercial podcast platforms for reaching the listeners. If the goal is to reach as many listeners as possible why not keep the free feeds AND have a DR-app? They are the only broadcaster in Denmark that is entirely tax-funded meaning we already paid for the podcasts so they should be freely available as many places as possible.

Well, AntennaPod is global project and there are lots of podcasts…

As for DR stance - I think that it would be better to address them instead of discussing it here? What’s more - if it’s a public broadcaster then maybe taking an official route (“strongly worded letter”) to them? A petition?

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The BBC have been trialling this approach with a number of their podcasts, including In Our Time and Inside Science as being ones I follow. In Our Time is not time critical so could easily be left to be on a four week delay but Inside Science is a topical science news programme so like The News Quiz should be listened to as soon as feasible. In case you didn’t know you can use the third party get_iplayer utility to rip these programmes a few minutes after they have been broadcast. I do this on my Windows laptop then FTP the files to my Android phone and add in as podcast files. I do use BBC Sounds for other purposes such as chase-playing live sports commentaries and it is also useful as a reminder of when new episodes become available.

Even if they fixed BBC Sounds to have decent playlist/queue management and to support skip time functions on external Bluetooth devices such as the car radio then we would still have the central issue of not being to mix and match content from other providers.

One variation they seem to have been trying is to make all episodes of a programme available straightaway on BBC Sounds but drop them as podcasts as and when they are broadcast - that is an approach I can live with.

I was thinking the same. This approach taken by DR seems to be not unique in media land; same in France, UK. I’m glad that NL isn’t going there (yet).

I’d happily contribute to efforts there, if you want.

“Public Money, Public Feed!” anyone? :stuck_out_tongue:


Same issue in Italy with RAI, with the management having the gall of saying publicly that “users care less than zero about RSS feeds”.

Some possible responses:

  • Leaving negative reviews on app stores, explicitly mentioning the withdrawal of RSS feeds
  • Supporting projects trying to empower users and bring back support for feeds, like RSS-Bridge
  • Contacting public broadcasters directly (including in-house content creators, explaining how these decisions are damaging them by restricting their listenership)
  • Contacting M(E)Ps who work on related topics
  • As @keunes was hinting at, a coordinated campaign under the FSFE: they have experience with similar advocacy actions (some examples can be found in their FOSDEM 2023 presentation)

This battle is too large for AntennaPod’s shoulders, we need all the allies we can get.


Ah, I didn’t even think of that! :smiley: Not a bad idea actually to reach out to them.

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I’d love to cover this in Podnews so will do some digging.

Radio France have (I think) the right idea, for broadcasters that must control their output: all new episodes are available on RSS. After a period of time (30 days I think) episodes move over to the Radio France app only.

Having archives in an app is rather better for a public broadcaster than the reverse.


Not sure if this is still a problem, but the behavior of radio France was not perfect in the past. I just discovered that you already covered radio France about this some time ago: The publishers who don't want their podcast to be on every platform

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According to this article (in Danish) about the move by DR, they are not worried about loosing listeners. Apparently the state financed broadcaster in Norway (NRK) did something similar and after a short while managed to bring their listeners to use the NRK-app.

Well, hopefully this headline will help people understand what’s going on. Thanks for the pointer!


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