About feed verification

First-time verification

In order to claim ownership of a Google Podcasts show in Podcasts Manager, you must prove that you own the RSS feed served for that show. This is to ensure that only verified owners can see listening data and make any other changes enabled by Podcasts Manager.

When you add a new show to Podcasts Manager, you will be guided through the process of verifying ownership of an RSS feed.

Proving show ownership is a three-step process:

  1. Using the Podcasts Manager's feed verification wizard, tell Podcasts Manager the URL of your show's RSS file. You must be signed in with a Google account when you do this.
  2. Podcasts Manager finds the email address listed in the owner tag in the feed and sends a verification code to that email.
  3. The recipient copies the code from the email into the verification wizard in Podcasts Manager. This person must be signed in to the wizard with Google account used in step 1. This need not be the same account that received the email in step 2.

Feed verification is tied to a Podcasts Manager show, not to a Podcasts Manager user. If User 1 verifies ownership of the feed for show X, but later quits the show, the show remains verified and available for all remaining users of show X.

Find or change the feed owner's email address

When you ask to verify feed ownership, Google sends a verification email with the verification code to the email address listed in the podcast feed. The verification wizard will show you that email address before sending the verification email. You must have access to that email address, or you won't receive the verification code.

Didn't receive a verification email? These are the most common reasons:
  • Email was marked as spam, or otherwise filtered out. Search your spam folder for emails, or search your email for messages containing the phrase "Google Podcasts Manager".
  • You're not checking the right email account. The email was sent to the address listed in the verification wizard; make sure that you are logged into your email with that account.

If you are managing your feed files directly, you can search for the tags as described below. If you are using a podcast hosting service, see if your service provides an easy way to see or change this email address (many hosting services do not). If your hosting service does not expose the feed owner email in an easy-to-update format, you'll have to find and edit the RSS file directly. It's not difficult!

To find or change the feed owner's email address:

  1. Visit your feed URL in a browser. Learn how get your feed's URL.
  2. Search for either of the following tags:
    • <itunes:email> (Recommended)
    • <googleplay:owner> (Supported, less recommended)
  3. If you find one of these tags, the owner's email address is listed inside the tag. This is the address to which Google will send the verification email. For example:

    <itunes:owner>
      <itunes:email>dafna@example.com</itunes:email>
    </itunes:owner>

  4. If you don't see an email tag, or you do see a tag but it doesn't contain an email address that you can access, then you must change it to an email account that you can access. If you are using a hosting service, read your hosting provider's documentation to learn how you can specify an owner's email address. Search for terms such as "add an owner email address to my feed". For example, here's how to update your owner address on Anchor.
  5. If you don't have permission to modify the file, find someone who does (for example, contact the owner listed in the tag).

If Google changes the served feed

If Google changes the served feed, you will see a prominent notification in Podcasts Manager, with a link to the verification process. When you see this notification, a user with access to the show in Podcasts Manager must verify ownership of the newly served feed, using the same process as first-time verification. Until you start the verification flow, you will lose any data that accrues to the newly served feed.

Note that the verification code will be sent to the email address of the owner specified in the RSS feed being verified.

Beware: Temporary loss of show access
When you request a show verification code, nobody can access that show until verification is completed. Do not start the verification flow unless you are sure that you can complete it.
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