Podcasts, iTunes and iPod

Man, I only got the iPod and I have a gripe about it. It displays my podcasts under the Albums, Artists and Songs categories on the iPod. What?! That just doesn’t make sense to me. Podcasts are not music necessarily. When I simply want to go play all my songs I don’t want podcasts playing in the middle of them.

On iTunes podcasts are in the podcast folder, music is in the music folder. So what’s the problem?

I called in to the Apple store in person on Thursday night. They had no idea either. The girl thought it might be a bug in iTunes. Great, so, no solution.

I searched the Apple support forums and a few people seem to be having the same issue. There are no helpful answers to any of the posts relating to this. I search the web as well, and it did get a mention here and there, but no solution – some are even suggesting it is by design!

Does anyone have any ideas? I could probably learn to live with it, but it doesn’t mean I like it.


12 thoughts on “Podcasts, iTunes and iPod

  1. Hey Alastair!
    Great you succumbed to the real world of MP3 players! Nice choice.

    Not sure I understand the problem with the Podscast category! Hmm!

    My iPod (same generation as yours) has Podcast category clearly in there and you can opt to list it or not in the Settings menu on the iPod. I also have latest version of iTunes and there is no bug there about the Podcast listing.

    In the iTunes preferences menu there is an option in there to have the podcasts (or any music too) play or not play along with the rest of the iPod content. Default is that it will all play in the general mix. You can switch it off and then no podcasts will play under Shuffle or general playing.

    Other solution is create a Playlist for your podcasts and then right click and select “Add to Playlist” for each podcast you want to have move in there for that day’s or trip’s listening experience. Then click the playlist and (if you have Shuffle off in the iPod Settings it will play through the entire list of podcasts one after the other in order of date. This is great if you have a long journey and don’t want to keep adjusting through your iPod (i.e. looking down as you drive!!! Horrors!!) to stop it jumping back to the Front (Top) menu every time you play one podcast or to choose the next podcast.

    Hope this helps you love and appreciate your iPod more!! :-) Would hate to think the halo effect is not going to work with such a tech as yourself!!

    Hugs and God bless.


  2. “Not sure I understand the problem with the Podscast category! Hmm!” – Typical fanboy response! ;-)

    I can’t see the option you talk about. I have the latest version of iTunes for Windows. On your iPod go to Music > Albums. Do you not see your podcasts listed in there too?



  3. OK … on my iPod, yes, I have my podcasts listed under Music > Album too. Hmm! That does make sense to me though as it is part of the content of your iPod, no?

    If you want to STOP the podcasts playing with your music, when you click to shuffle the iPod content, I was saying that you should go to your iTunes folder, highlight the Podcast you’ve subscribed too (NOT each individual one listed under the podcast!! i.e. select the podcast called “story4all’s podcast” not the individual episodes). Then right click the podcast and select “Get Info”. Down the bottom it says “Skip When Shuffling” with the option Yes or No. Choose Yes and click the little tick box to enable that choice. Click OK and now when you’re shuffling your podcasts will not mix with your music!

    The other thing about playlists I said before is still my favourite way to go through all my podcasts I want to listen too (without music interruption).

    Is this getting near to your problem with the iPod? Hope so.



  4. Neil Kerr says:

    I know you are a computer genius and you probably have this worked out already but if you go the iTunes File Menu and choose New Smart Playlist you can build you dynamic playlists based on your rules

    Enter the following to solve your problem

    Kind Does Not Contain Video
    Kind Does Not Contain Quicktime
    Genre Is Not Podcast
    Genre Is Not Audiobook

    Give it a name and save it. Ta Da – you now have a playlist which contains only music. You might have to add an additional clause if you have other nonmusical genres in your library.


  5. Irene Balogun says:

    I’ve been wrestling with this for the last few days too. The “only music” playlist is the best solution I’ve seen but it doesn’t fix the real problem. If I want to find all my Modest Mouse songs, I go to Music->Artists and in order to get to Modest Mouse I have to scroll past all sorts of Podcast artists.

    One solution I’ve seen is to change all Podcast artist tags to “Podcast”. You’d still have the problem with album tags though (and could theoretically apply the same solution). No way to get them out of the songs list though :(

    I’ve been very disappointed with my ipod’s “easy user interface”


  6. Brad L says:

    Yeah, I’m grappling with this problem as we speak… There’s much I like about my iPod, but much that’s just plain infuriating and totally illogical.

    Why should getting podcasts out of the music categories require such hop, skip, and jumping on the part of the user? It makes absolutely no sense that it should be in there in the first place.

    I don’t want it playing in my music, and I don’t want it showing in my music. I don’t want to have to scroll through a dozen podcasts when I’m looking through albums, artists, or songs.

    If I want to look for podcasts, I’ll look through (wait for it) ‘Podcasts.’

    Such poor management… and after I was happy to have finally come to terms with the gymnastics and magic incantations required to keep it from splitting up my soundtracks and other ‘various artists’ albums into seperate ‘albums’ for each individual combination of performers.

    “It just works” Yeah right. So long as you aren’t terribly concerned with HOW WELL it works.


  7. Jared says:

    Kind of late on the response, but:

    If you go to the Podcasts section of iTunes and select all (ctrl + A), you can set all of your podcasts to “part of a compilation”. This will muck up your compilations menu on your iPod, of course, but at least your Artists section will be podcast-free.

    The podcasts will still be listed under the Podcast menu as long as you don’t change the genre from Podcast.


  8. Or Apple could actually work bugs out of the system that have been there for years. There is a podcast menu. There has been since 4G. Yet podcasts downloaded in iTunes don’t show up in the Podcast menu on the iPod (which remains blank – think different: no podcasts in the podcast menu).

    The solution is for people at One Infinite Loop to make a patch that puts anything tagged with “Podcast” in the Podcast menu on the iPod and not have it in the Music menu or the Videos menu. If they’re worth their salt, it should take a new hire all of a weekend to code the patch. But what do I know – I’m just some guy who thinks that people who are paid to program should do their job and do it well.

    Workarounds are just that – a way to work around the problem without fixing it. This bug has existed for years and, given the poor, lazy design of the Classic, which includes such gems as having Compilations show up multiple times in Coverflow, will probably remain for many months to come.


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