OK, I’m a hypocrite.Â Previously, I said RSS should be full text.Â One of my commenters on that post (those old Haloscan hosted comments did not move over to the new blog) suggested I was full of beans.Â So, as an experiment I have RSS set up on this blog as short intros.Â I welcome feed back from any of you subscribing to the feed.
I just found your feed (followed a link on Yelvington’s blog) and was disappointed to find only teaser RSS. For a non-commercial blog, I don’t see the point of not having a full-text feed.
This is all an experiment … part of the reason this blog exists is for me to learn more about online publishing … so far the data sample is too small to draw any conclusions.
Just back from CA, and on the nonstop flights to and from the Left Coast, I was catching up on my blog reading, thanks to Newsgator’s caching in my Outlook. Wouldn’t you know, among the posts I read was your previous one re full posts in RSS feeds. I couldn’t have agreed more, given that the feeds that only gave me teaser text were essentially useless to me while reading offline. In fact, I found myself unsubscribing to a few of those feeds (in part because I was looking for an excuse to weed some out).
I’m not saying my behavior is the paragon of RSS usage. But the experience did cement for me my long-held belief that using only teaser text in RSS feeds as a means of driving traffic back to a Web site is not an effective long-term strategy.
I’m probably preaching to the choir here, but dictating how people interact with our content is a gatekeeper mentality, and one of many such old-school approaches that is making some media irrelevant.
We are in an a la carte media age. RSS, Netflix, Itunes, BitTorrent, TiVo, SMS, IM, e-mail, you name it. People want the content they want, when they want it, how they want it. If people want to receive their content (notice I didn’t call it “our” content) through RSS, you better give it to them — and give it all to them — if you want to keep them as a customer and keep your brand in the marketplace.
We are becoming increasingly invisible to an increasing number of people. Not reaching our current and potential readers in their preferred medium is a big reason for that (another big reason is the content itself, but we’ll save that debate for another day).
[…] After writing that RSS should be full-text feeds previously, I decided when I switched to WordPress to give summaries a try and see if it made any difference in traffic. I can’t say that it has, though maybe my audience size is too small to give a meaningful sample size. At any rate, since the idea of summary RSS breaks one of my rules about user control, and Sean Polay’s (comment #4), I’ve ended the experiment. […]