Are long RSS items rude? More and more people are reading inside of news readers and not bothering to go to the blogs themselves. (My logs show this.) Should we put full text of the blog entry in the RSS feed, even if it's long? It will surely slow your refresh rate. Has anyone written a style guide for RSS feeds? It's a moving target, but I would be interested to hear about how readers and writers are designing their RSS feeds. Obviously, the people who are reading this in their RSS readers are going to have to get up off their butts and click on my blog to comment... ;-)

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Why not offer people multiple options and then each person can pick whichever one suits his/her reading style the best? One feed with short excerpts, one with medium-sized excerpts, and one with full posts.

I agree with Jason. Although I only do it with two versions: One short RSS feed only with excerpts, and one full-text RSS feed. Via Bloglet, the latter RSS feed also serves as a full-text newsletter to the people that don't bother to regularly visit the site nor use a newsreader (i.e. many regular folks).

I think Jason and Stefan have it right: there should be several options for people to receive your content. I personally read everything in my desktop news aggregator, and I look forward to the day when i can comment on it, and have it show up on your site and on mine at the same time!

Yes, full blog entries in my RSS feed please. I read my blogroll now almost exclusively in Syndirella. And for all you bloggers without RSS, please get off your butts and implement it so I can read you blog in my RSS feed reader. :-)

I prefer full RSS feeds so I can read everything at a glance but I'm with the dual feed option. It's always better to give more options than fewer. We need to come up with naming standards for short form RSS and long form RSS. That or a param to the header with the loc's for the alternate feed form. Or how about a standard metafeed that details all of the available form types and versions. As we get into later and later forms of syndication methods we're going to need metadata for the metadata. The Semantic Web will more than likely address all these issues. Anyway I digress. I vote for the long form.

I too prefer full posts. Sadly, I don't often have time to follow the partial posts, and I'm sure that many of the partial-post posters don't know that their truncated posts are losing an audience.

Well, several options are great and I think needed. However, what happens to the whole experience of browsing through the website and discovering that this picture has changed or the colour theme has been modified or discovering some hidden/new link that you would have never in your RSS reader. As a graphic designer, I really need to be confronted to different visual styles wrapped around blogs and news. To me they also contribute to the news themselves.

I made changes to how my RSS feed is distributed in my Radio weblog to truncate the posts to 100 or so characters. i did this because I tend to write (50% or more) longer posts and am sensitive to the overwhelming amount of unformatted text in most newsreaders.

Having said that, I don't mind clicking on truncated feeds that inspire me to want to know more. If you think about classic shools of journalism and the importance of capturing the essence of the story in the first sentence or two. Good writers and bloggers do this. And if it is of interest I don't mind going to the site and reading more.

I do have an issue with certain commercial sites that give nothing but the headline. MacNN, for example. Others too. What happens here is I'm just not visiing the site anymore. I get my Mac news from the non-commercial bloggers with a focus on Mac news and events. This is a shift of my web habit that affects the mainstream online media.

I'm all for options. There are some sites where I want to see full posts and comments and trackbacks and such. Others, I'd be fine with just blurbs. On my site, I offer feeds with comments and trackbacks, with just comments, just trackbacks, or neither. Let the user decide how they want the content.

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The long and the short of it from Stochastic Aleatory Ontological Expostulations
February 24, 2003 9:11 AM

The problem with excerpts is with how they're generated. If I recall correctly, there's an option in Movable Type to write the full article and an excerpt. I doubt that many users take advantage of this, and apparently the usual practice is to have the... Read More

Having just flown back home from California, I would like to state definitively my opinion that RSS feeds should be unabbreviated. Give your readers everything -- all the text, all the images, all of it. And don't go back just... Read More

Having just flown back home from California, I would like to state definitively my opinion that RSS feeds should be unabbreviated. Give your readers everything -- all the text, all the images, all of it. And don't go back just... Read More

Long RSS Items "Are long RSS items rude? More and more people are reading inside of news readers and not bothering to go to the blogs themselves. Read More

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