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Amazon Music Adds Hosting & Monetization Platform Art19

Amazon Music (Not the be confused with Audible) is taking things up a notch in the Podcasting Wars. The company acquired the platform Art19 for an undisclosed amount.

This means Amazon will be involved in hosting podcasters’ shows as well as selling ads. Art19 operates an ad marketplace that targets and inserts ads into their podcasts.

Amazon Music only started offering podcasts in September of 2020, Audible started last October. It’s a little confusing. In the mean time, Amazon Music has acquired Wondery.

Now Amazon can host their own podcasts, as well as third parties’ shows, and sell ads for both. Which is good, because Jeff Bezos desperately needs more money. Amazon will also have even more data about what’s happening with their in house podcasts and other platforms.

Begun, the Podcast Wars have

Amazon Music already sells its own ads, so Art19 might just add to it. That may seem a little redundant, but then so do Audible and Amazon Music.

For the record, Audible is focused on on-demand audio while Amazon Music is in the traditional podcast game. But I digress.

Of course I have worked in radio for years, and their strategy is usually to say they’re going to work together with the new employees. Then a few months later they “consolidate” positions. Not that I ever saw a broadcasting company do such a thing. Or that I’m still bitter about it years later.

You may remember Spotify has been doing the same thing lately. They started picking up content companies like Gimlet Media and Parcast. Then they acquired Megaphone.

It’s not just Spotify either. Other podcasting companies have also been busy acquiring like there’s no tomorrow. iHeartMedia acquired Triton Digital and SXM Media acquired Midroll.

So basically, now that they have all added a ton of new content all of the companies are tripping over each other to come up with new was to monetize it.