I listen to a handful of podcasts that have adopted the Podcasting 2.0 standards, most notably the NameSpace.  I’m not qualified to detail the NameSpace but here is a simple breakdown for those who are interested: What is Podcasting 2.0, and why is it important?

A large number of these podcasts have adopted not only the NameSpace but also the Value 4 Value model of accepting micropayments of Bitcoin called Satoshis or Sats.  Sats primarily move on the Lightning Network,  a “Layer 2” payment protocol within the Bitcoin network.  There are several Podcasting 2.0 enabled podcast apps (Supported Apps List) and some, like one I use, Fountain supports streaming sats while listening and Boosts which are comments paid for with Sats.  I’m also a fan of Podcast Addict, but the developer hasn’t enabled all the 2.0 features, notably support for sats and boosts, so for now my non-2.0 podcasts remain there since I do prefer Podcast Addict.

The Adpocalypse

The Adpocalypse is where advertisers have started pulling back on how much they spend on ads in a medium, for the purpose of this post I’m focusing on podcasting.  When this happens, podcasters who make their living, or a good portion of their living, in podcasting are forced to shut down their shows, sometimes temporarily, sometimes permanently.

This obviously is a double edged sword.  On one hand it serves as a thinning of the herd, during the Covid-19 lockdown it seemed like everyone was starting a podcast, now that the money has dried up and employers are foolishly forcing a return to the office, people have neither the time or money to continue.  But on the other side, longtime career podcasters who produce quality content are also being forced to shut down their shows.  I’ve seen this with some of the shows I listen to from Jupiter Broadcasting with shows being put on hiatus.

Sats 4 Ads

I listen to several shows from Jupiter Broadcasting and the main host Chris Fisher has tried some novel ideas, one being the boost bounty.  The boost bounty is where listeners boost into a show and once a threshold has been met they will produce an episode.  This idea is discussed on episode #32 of the show Office Hours.  Office hours has a smaller listenership than most shows on the network, and yet the bounty was reached and episode #34 (the first to work on the bounty program) was produced less than a month later.

Chris’s discussions on Office Hours and other Jupiter Broadcasting shows about alternative ways to support the shows got me thinking about the subject and I came up with “Sat 4 Ads”.  So what’s the idea?  Basically let people pay for ads with sats.  There’s a one floor elevator pitch if I’ve ever heard one.

Expand a little please?

Alright so let’s say a single ad mid-show by an advertiser is valued at $10 USD (I have no idea I’m just guessing here), so a podcaster could publish their cost to read an ad at the $10 mid-show spot and list the amount of sats they they require to read the ad.  So at the time of writing $10 = 38,909 Sats.  So an advertiser or anyone really could send a boost to the “ad wallet” with the 38,909 Sats and the host would read the ad in the appropriate spot.

Now obviously there would need to be guidelines set out as to what will and won’t be read on air and those guidelines would need to be posted on the page with the submission form.  One way to avoid having to return Sats for rejected ads would be to have a submission form for the ad where the advertiser includes their lighting address, then once the podcaster approves the ad they can send an invoice via the lighting network for the 38,909 Sats, and once received the ad will be read on the show.

Avoiding conflicts

Now let’s say you have a super popular show and the June 14th episode is the most coveted spot.  Everyone wants to get their ad on the June 14th show, so you get 23 ad submissions requesting June 14th but you only have two ad spots for that price.  Well that’s a mess, isn’t it?  So what would need to be implemented would be an “ad buy calendar”.

So what is the ad buy calendar?  The calendar would list all scheduled air dates and the available ads within that show.  So if you have two ad spots on the June 14th show the calendar would have two open slots, an advertiser would click on one of those two spots and be taken to the submission form where they would input their ad and lightning address and then submit for approval.

Now the podcaster would review the ad, and either accept or reject the ad.  Once an ad has been submitted the slot would be locked, and if the ad is accepted it will remain locked, but if it’s rejected the slot would be reopened.  Now this only works for single ad reads, let’s try to provide a little stability for our friendly neighborhood podcaster.

Ongoing ads

Within the ad buy calendar there should be the option to buy multiple spots.  So when an advertiser picks a spot they would check a box that says “make this on going” which would bring up a submenu.  Within this submenu the advertiser would select how many shows they wish to run ads on and then the calendar would provide the total amount of Sats required to buy that many spots.

So if an advertiser want s to run their ad 10 times it would cost them $100 USD or 389,181 Sats.  But maybe they don’t have that much in the budget, so they change the number of ads from 10 to 8 and the submenu automatically updates to $80 USD or 311,345 Sats.  So Cheapskate Marketing LLC decides they can afford to spend $80 and still make payroll so they accept the amount and submit the ad.  The ad and the amount of Sats would then be sent to the podcaster for review.  Once accepted the podcaster would then send the invoice for the 311,345 Sats to the invoice address provided by Cheapskate Marketing LLC, and once paid the next 8 ad slots on the ad buy calendar would be locked.


I admit I may not have thought of everything, I’ve never dealt with the ad sales market so I’m speculating on almost everything.  But maybe this will spark an idea that will lead to something that will work.  I can’t code, I’ve tried to learn but it just doesn’t make sense to me. I can understand the concepts and talk about these things, but I can’t read or write code.  So this is my way of contributing, by writing out my ideas and hoping someone who can code will make them a reality.

All I would ask is that you link to this post somewhere in your Github for this project.  And maybe send me a link to the Gitbhub so I can see the development. I may not be able to read the code but it would still be fun to see things develop.