Are there Ads in the stream?

While listening to GR with Winamp for a while today, my computer suddenly played an Ad for a german discounter.
Did this come from the stream?

I mean, I have no problem with ads like this, but I never heard ads before, and it gave me the greeps because I have no clue where it come from, as I was also browsing the net with Firefox at the time with some tabs open, and I could not find the source for the ad…

Yes, it’s a recent addition. Lunar talked about it in the last livestream, but I can’t find any other official source of him saying he added this. As you may know, Lunar and the crew are keeping the radio running with a sizeable amount of their own money, and in these quarantine times some of them don’t have a stable job, so in order to keep the radio running they added ads.

I would have appreciated some sort of official announcement on the forums for those that aren’t able to catch the live shows. I’m not adverse to the ads to keep the station online, but a little more public transparency would be appreciated in my opinion.

We updated the station on April 1st and began testing ad rolls on the 2nd. Once we saw things were running well enough from a technical perspective, we went ahead with some additional work before posting an article on the main website about it which you can currently view here.

Considering this project went from start to finish in about a week, I’m pretty pleased with the turnaround time. The update to the privacy policy isn’t a light task; we needed to set aside several hours to research what to include and where users can find more information (we don’t have a legal team to write it out for us).

All that said, the allocated space for ads on the station may fluctuate as needed over the coming weeks and months as we gauge how they’re received by listeners and how it affects overall listenership. We’re lucky to have a lot of performance numbers on listenership up to this point, but putting monetization into all of it is a big unknown, so we’ll be playing it by ear for a while (no pun intended).

Any feedback or thoughts about this are welcome in this thread. I appreciate your patience and understanding throughout all of this.


We’ve received quite a few questions about this change throughout the last week, and I understand. This is a somewhat abrupt change that no one really asked for. I’d like to answer some of those questions so that folks can refer back here for answers later on.

Why are there ads?

The station has been graciously supported by listeners in recent years through our e-store where we sell T-shirts, mugs, stickers, buttons, etc. For the last year or so, the store has not been able to keep up with the cost of server rental, domain name fees, and other station-related costs, so we pay for it out-of-pocket.

Combine that with the pandemic that started in Winter 2020. Many folks, including your station manager, have lost their primary source of income. This means we need to hunker down and try to weather the financial storm that’s brewing just over the horizon. We can still support the station out-of-pocket for a little while, but if the pandemic continues and stay-at-home orders across the US and other countries remain in effect, we’re going to have some difficult choices to make.

One of those choices may be to offline the station. We’d rather not do that, and I’m sure many of our listeners appreciate us being around while they’re stuck indoors, too. Ads are a band-aid solution that will help us keep things running for a while longer.

Will ads be removed from GR in the future?

It depends on a number of factors. If running ads does not significantly impact listenership, and the station benefits from running them to enable us to do more in the future, they might stay. If listenership tanks, or the benefits of running them are too small, we might remove them.

We can look at listener trends in the short-term. However, the ad company we’re working with has a significant lag time between when ads are served and when we receive compensation. Because of this, ads will likely run until at least August, at which point we’ll reevaluate.

How often do ads run?

We will be experimenting with ad break duration and frequency over time. We started in April with a 1-minute break every hour. We’ve also tried 1-minute breaks every 45 minutes. Both of these are significantly below the ad company’s recommended programming of two 2-minute ad breaks every hour. I doubt we’ll ever set it that high, but until recently, that was considered the minimum requirement to run ads at all. At least now we have some flexibility with it.

What do the ads advertise? RaId:ShAdOwLeGeNdS?!?

Ads are targeted based on the country you’re listening in, so the ads themselves will vary. In the US, you may hear from mobile phone providers, insurance companies, and PSAs about washing your hands (relevant!). In France, you may hear from retailers and other companies relevant to the French population. Our ad company is responsible for managing what gets served, not us, so it will vary and change over time.

Why am I not hearing ads? All I hear is music after the GR insert.

Gensokyo Radio has listeners in more than 160 countries around the world, but our ad company only runs ads in a select number of locations. At the time of writing, ads are only available in:

  • United States
  • Canada
  • Mexico
  • Argentina
  • France
  • United Kingdom
  • Germany
  • Belgium
  • Netherlands
  • Ireland
  • Spain
  • Italy
  • Switzerland
    (This list is subject to change)

If you’re not in one of these countries, you will not hear ads served by our provider. Even with this short list, these countries cover about 55% of our listener base.

On the other hand, the music bit that runs in place of the ad spot is controlled by us, and we may opt to put something else there instead.


To sum things up, I’ve helped to run GR for more than 8 years at this point, and I’d like to see it continue. For that to happen, I (or someone) needs to be able to manage it, and we need to be able to pay for the services that are responsible for keeping it going.

As mentioned earlier, you can ask questions or write your thoughts below. Stay safe out there.


Hey there :]

for two days already the Intermission of Gensokyo Radio is started by a German AD / PSA about an online platform with something about the Corona Virus. Not only is it non exactly great for an international audience, it’s actually louder than the music =.=
How did it get into the stream?

PS: Children screaming during an AD break is the ultimate sin >.<

Hey there @CuteLarva , welcome to the forum!

Your post was moved to an existing thread that already talks about this. If you’re hearing ads in German, presumably you’re in or near Germany. Specific advertisements are served based on geolocation (and our privacy policy, specifically section 4.5, reflects this). As for your other questions, I’d recommend reading through the above posts.

If you have other questions, feel free to ask in this thread.

Thanks for clearing things up.
Time to buy some mugs :]

If this is the wrong thread, or it has been discused before for give me. I wonder, for me, is there a way I can contribute to the site. via donations?

At this time, we are not accepting donations. It may sound strange, but they’re much more of a pain to report during pandemic times than normal.

Sales, on the other hand, are much easier to handle by comparison, so we’ll be getting our web store back up and running in the near future. That said, we are aware that certain countries are not accepting parcels from the United States at this time, so we’ll need to implement a new check for this (meaning new code, and more time required to get things back to near normal).

Alternatively, if you want to make a direct contribution to the people who work on keeping this station running through these times, you can support via Patreon at (aka LunarSpotlight Media).