Friday, September 29, 2006

Short vs. full RSS feeds

Jonathan of PlagiarismToday posted about the pros/cons of full vs. short feeds and brought up a number of issues that I hadn't really thought about before.

Some feeds I subscribe to use short feeds, and some use the full. As a reader, I prefer the full feed -- I like not having to click to the actual blog to view the full version, only click to the full version if I have a comment to contribute or want to see what others are commenting, and the short feed versions sometimes make it hard to tell what the entry is really about (I have to confess that if I can't tell what it's about from the short feed, I usually just pass by instead of investigating - I'm sure this means I miss useful things, but it just seems inconvenient to have to go to the site).

I'm fairly new to blogging and I was thinking about this last week when looking at my Blogger settings. With my own blog, I contemplated switching to short feeds, because I thought it might give me a better idea of which posts were more "interesting" to those reading my blog and might prompt me to consider topics that aren't always at the forefront of my mind. Because I don't really like the short feed as a reader, though, I decided that it wasn't worth the potential inconvenience (and the burden of trying to make the first few words so great that people couldn't resist clicking to read the full entry!). I also don't feel at great risk of content theft (hadn't even occurred to me until I read the post linked above).

I'm wondering what others are thinking on this issue, as both readers and as blog authors.

A follow-up Plagiarism Today post about a petition against short feeds (petition launched by an Australian blogger).

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At 1:35 PM, Blogger Rachel said...

I recently switched back to short feeds because I was having content scraped, but I'm not entirely comfortable with the decision. If my goal is to spread information (which it is), should I care if my intellectual property gets ripped off? I haven't quite reconciled that yet.

At 8:58 AM, Blogger BeckyJ said...

Scraping seems to be the main concern for feed length; it would seem like you should have a reasonable expectation of receiving credit for things that you write, especially for some of the fairly in-depth analysis of issues I've seen you post! Also losing control of the way your information is presented and the context it's placed in is troubling.


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