February 13, 2005


The importance of your blog's feeds contents

A message to bloggers; a wish as a reader




A week ago I started a series of post about a certain sort of blogging "etiquette"; a wish list that bloggers would be able to follow to enhance the experience of their readers. I talked of the importance of posts' titles; today I'll talk about the content we put in our feeds.


When we blog we have normally two mediums of publication. The first one is what appears on the web site of the blog with all his features. The other is the Atom or RSS feed that our subscribed readers download every morning. What is really interesting with RSS feeds is that you can, at one place, aggregate many source of information. You can scan the content of your feed and read what catch your attention. Another interesting thing that you can do, depending of the RSS reader you are using, is to search in your old feed posts as if you were searching for stuff on Google. Everybody knows the fact but where is the problem?


The problem is that some blogger put entire posts on their website and only excerpt of these posts in their feeds. My question is: Why? This is probably to increase the traffic on their website; it's the only thing I can think of. The problem is that this practice cut the readers with a vital source of information. What is interesting with feed is to have a local copy of posts to have the ability to search in them. Without the full post, this feature is useless. More and more bloggers are doing this. More and more frustrated I become and less and less I subscribe to such feeds. What's beautiful is the decentralization of the information in the system; not his centralization in a focal point.


Think about it as a reader and as a publisher. As a blogger, think what are your goals: is this to get the greater number of hits on your website or to be read and commented? If it's to be read then your preoccupation would be to publish your entire posts in your feed.


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