How to Ensure Your Podcast Does Not Get Rejected By iTunes

How to Ensure Your Podcast Does Not Get Rejected By iTunes

You’ve worked really hard on your podcast. You feel like you have covered all the bases and you’re ready to take the podcasting world by storm. However, when you submitted your work, you received a disheartening reply—your podcast has been rejected!

While it’s tempting to sulk, take heart. All is not in vain. Rather than losing hope, figure out what you did wrong and resolve it. If you have no idea where to look, the following are good starting points:

Missing title tag

Forgetting to put the title tag in the RSS feed can get your podcast rejected. Surprisingly, this is one aspect many podcasters tend to overlook. Fortunately, this is also one blunder that’s pretty easy to fix.

Broken RSS feed

Not everyone may be aware of it but iTunes gives podcasters the option to test their podcast RSS feed prior to submission. It’s an awesome way to preview your podcast before submitting it. Here’s how it is done:

  • Start by opening the iTunes program on your computer
  • Look for the File menu dropdown
  • Click on the Subscribe to Podcast option
  • Place the URL of your podcast feed in the box and click OK right after

Unrecognized cover art format

If you have employed a professional to work on your cover art, check the image format they used. Using the following image formats can get you rejected:

  • Photoshop (.psd)
  • Encapsulated PostScript (.eps)
  • Photoshop (.psd)
  • Adobe Portable Document Format (.pdf)
  • Adobe Illustrator (.ai)

The following are the only image formats accepted by iTunes:

  • PNG (.png)
  • JPEG (.jpg)

In addition, your cover art should be at least 1400 x 1400 pixels and should not exceed 3000 x 3000 pixels. Not meeting the desired dimensions can also be a cause for rejection.


Duplicate title and URL

If you have erroneously submitted the same URL twice, iTunes will mark it as duplicate. While this is a common blunder, it is reassuring to know it is pretty easy to solve. All you have to do is modify the title slightly.

If you are using a WordPress plugin, you can easily fix the error using the plugin’s control panel. You also have the option to change the URL feed to resolve the issue. This is relatively easy when you are using a free service such as Feedburner.

However, if for some reason you are unable to make the needed RSS feed modifications, getting in touch with iTunes ( is your best option.

Violation of terms

Violation of Apple’s terms can also merit a rejection from iTunes. That being said, you should be mindful of the following policies:

  • Intellectual property – refrain from using the words “Apple,” “iTunes,” or the Apple logo in your description, URL, or title. Otherwise, you’ll surely get rejected.
  • Trademarks – using brand trademarks without permission will not only get you rejected, you also risk having brand owners take legal action against you.
  • Inappropriate content – while podcasts that tackle mature subject matters are accepted, you are not allowed to use images that depict drugs, violence, sex, etc. In addition, podcasts that advocate discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender, or race will also get the boot.
  • Not marking explicit/mature content as explicit – there have been instances where podcasts have been removed from the iTunes directory because they weren’t marked accordingly. If you slip an F-bomb, however occasional, play it safe by marking the entire show as explicit.

Has your podcast been rejected? What did you do wrong and how did you resolve it? Sound off in the comments section below!

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