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RSS Syndication: What, Why and How?

Filed under: Blogging,RSS — Marshall Kirkpatrick @

RSS Syndication is a key element of the emerging Web 2.0 world. Once you start using it to keep up with your favorite organizations, news sources, current events issues and other online phenomena – you will never want to go back to the old habits of “surfing” the web. Neither will the people who visit your organization’s site. Thus it is very important to make RSS feeds available for your news updates and other updated matierial. This will keep users up to date and coming back to your site, helping focus them on you despite the huge number of options available to them online at any time.

If you have never seen what the inside of an RSS aggregator loooks like, I’ve set up a seeded demonstration account over at Newsgator.com that you can view. Username is “marshalldemo” and pass word is “welcome”
Check out some of the feeds coming into that account to get an idea what sorts of things are consumable via RSS.

Various Concept Intros

Introduction to RSS (my intro)

Alexandra Samuel’s RSSTocracy (A general resource site, with introductions)

Why You Should Use an RSS Reader (Another intro)

Examples of RSS in Use

Order From Chaos Via RSS

More Enterprise RSS Examples (how a variety of organizations are using RSS, plus this site is a great resource in general. The podcasts are super interesting.)

Update on the NPTech Attention Stream MetaFeed
Check out an RSS feed that’s collaboratively created by and for non-profit technologists! I’m the publisher of this MetaFeed.

Tips on Using RSS

Getting Your Feed Reader Organized My article on info-overload and how RSS can help.

Adding One-Click Subscribe to RSS Buttons to Your Site (One example)

RSS Tools You’ll Want to Use

Feedburner
The best RSS feed hosting service, also has lots of great supporting features like automatic pinging and subscribe by email.
http://feedburner.com

Feed Digest (for splicing multiple RSS feeds into one, turning a feed into an automatic HTML display for you site, and lots more)
http://feeddigest.com

FeedFire creates scraped headline feeds of sites that don’t have their own RSS feeds. A little clumsy, but works way better than nothing.
http://feedfire.com

Ok, I hope this is helpful and interesting. I do hope you’ll check out the world of RSS, it’s really revolutionary and will dramatically increase your effectiveness if you use it well.

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