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Should Aggregators All Be Listed in the RSS Feed Bar?

 
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K9ZW
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Joined: 08 Oct 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2008 9:36 pm    Post subject: Should Aggregators All Be Listed in the RSS Feed Bar? Reply with quote

Questioning if all the various Aggregators should be listed in the RSS Feed Bar?

An RSS Aggregator is a Feed that seldom generates Original Content, but rather either repeats other posts, in full or partially, or simply acts as a pointer to the actual content.

Seems than when the ARRL posts an article we quickly get four or five RSS alerts, as the various Aggregators report that the ARRL said, and in a few cases report that Blog XYZ said that the ARRL said.... all without adding any actual content.

Realistically there is not a whole lot to be done about the occassional Aggregation blog post, but one wonders if there would be a way to do without the "lower value added" mostly Aggregated feeds?

73

Steve
K9ZW

(BTW Some of the Hamblogs Authors call Aggregator Feeds "Content Scrapers." Seems a fitting title.)
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n0hr
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Location: Iowa

PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2008 9:51 pm    Post subject: Banning RSS aggregators Reply with quote

Good question Steve.

I've always wanted to keep a very high S/N ratio in the RSS list and have been a bit annoyed (like you) at scrapers. Worst of all are those sites who scrape without permission. I believe that the sites in the RSS list are all "aggregating" (to give them the benefit of the doubt) with permission.

I really wish everyone would simply publish his own new content. Unfortunately, there are sites such as Southgate ARC which contain both new content (posted directly on their site) as well as scraped content. So eliminating that site would also eliminate some content that we would not see otherwise.

I guess the question is, "Is it worth leaving in a aggregator site knowing that we get some duplicate content?"

I'll post a poll and after a week or two decide.

73
Pat N0HR
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n0hr
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 22, 2008 9:57 pm    Post subject: Scraper RSS feed poll Reply with quote

Poll added. Please vote!

http://www.n0hr.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?t=62
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K9ZW
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2008 3:25 am    Post subject: Re: Banning RSS aggregators Reply with quote

n0hr wrote:
Good question Steve.

I've always wanted to keep a very high S/N ratio in the RSS list .....

...... the RSS list are all "aggregating" (to give them the benefit of the doubt) with permission.

I really wish everyone would simply publish his own new content. Unfortunately, there are sites such as Southgate ARC which contain both new content (posted directly on their site) as well as scraped content. So eliminating that site would also eliminate some content that we would not see otherwise.


Perhaps the focus would be trim "secondary Aggregators?"

Primary Aggregators like Southgate and ARRL have a membership expectations for information they need to serve, and have direct RSS subscribers in the 1000's.

Secondary Aggregators tend to serve up the same again for a thousand or less, sometimes only a few hundreds of readers at best, many who are already receiving the same information not only from the Primary Aggregators, but often from the originating source, various newsletters and publications.

Do we really need or want a RSS notification that just points out the same information the Primaries will have to cover for their members?

Unless it has some added content, probably not.

Perhaps the poll should reflect some sort of middle ground?

73

Steve
K9ZW


http://k9zw.wordpress.com/ (trying hard to be an unenhanced-aggregation free website)
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n0hr
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2008 3:40 am    Post subject: Aggregator poll Reply with quote

Fair enough. I've added that to the poll.
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k2dbk
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2008 6:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've answered the poll, but I'll reply with my comments here:

First, I wanted to point out that this isn't a new problem. It may be somewhat new to RSS feeds, but many of the mailing lists (reflectors) that I'm on republish information also. I'm not just talking about a DX list mentioning that Good Grief Reef is going to be reactivated, but lists that republish the major (free) DX bulletins, like 425DXN and the ARRL DX bulletin. The result is the same.

For sites that publish their own content along with scraped content, the right way to fix the problem is to publish multiple RSS feeds. In the simplest case, you'd have three: One for locally generated content, one for scraped (republished) content, and one for everything. (Plenty of sites do exactly this thing, and taken to a much bigger scale, think about all the feeds out of nytimes . com, for instance).

The argument has been made that you can skip what you don't want to read, and that's true, but it still means that there's plenty of bits getting pushed around the Internet that don't need to be.

I don't think there's anything wrong with pointing to another news source if it's appropriate, especially if the source is not generally well-known and the "pointer" is better-known (e.g., ARRL DX bulletin pointing to website for the Good Grief Reef Dxpedition), but just pushing down tons of stuff that someone else wrote seems kind of pointless. I guess what happens is that eventually folks unsubscribe ("I've seen this three times already!"), which, IMHO, makes the problem self-resolving.

73,
David, K2DBK
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n0hr
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2008 6:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good point David and thanks for voting.

I really wish that aggregating RSS feeds had options to "show all" and "show only original content". That way, with a generally good ham radio feed like Southgate ARC, I could choose to only pull new content into the toolbar (filtering out duplicate content).

73
Pat N0HR
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k2dbk
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2008 6:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

n0hr wrote:
Good point David and thanks for voting.

I really wish that aggregating RSS feeds had options to "show all" and "show only original content". That way, with a generally good ham radio feed like Southgate ARC, I could choose to only pull new content into the toolbar (filtering out duplicate content).

73
Pat N0HR

Southgate was, of course, the thing I was thinking of. The one problem for some sites is that doing multiple feeds is more complex than just checking the "publish feeds" button (or using Feedburner) on the "freebie" sites, meaning that you need to have a little technical expertise. However, for any "serious" site, this shouldn't be insurmountable.
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73,
David, K2DBK
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K9ZW
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2008 12:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

k2dbk wrote:
.....this isn't a new problem. It may be somewhat new to RSS feeds, ......


Good point!

Perhaps what is uncomfortable with the current situation is how in some ways using a Toolbar preloaded with feeds is in a way a sort of "Meta Aggregator" by having all these various feeds paralleling?


k2dbk wrote:
For sites that publish their own content along with scraped content, the right way to fix the problem is to publish multiple RSS feeds......


Not very certain we could expect this sort of effort from all RSS feed Aggregators. I know I've done it for my site by dividing my original effort into three blogs with separate feeds.

k2dbk wrote:
The argument has been made that you can skip what you don't want to read, and that's true, but it still means that there's plenty of bits getting pushed around the Internet that don't need to be.


Now if we could just skip the duplicate notifications?!

k2dbk wrote:
I don't think there's anything wrong with pointing to another news source if it's appropriate, especially if the source is not generally well-known and the "pointer" is better-known (e.g., ARRL DX bulletin pointing to website for the Good Grief Reef Dxpedition), but just pushing down tons of stuff that someone else wrote seems kind of pointless. I guess what happens is that eventually folks unsubscribe ("I've seen this three times already!"), which, IMHO, makes the problem self-resolving.


In this case the base feeds are hardwired into the Toolbar, leaving a person with an all or nothing situation.

Perhaps to be included on the toolbar as a pre-configured feed we each could adopt your idea to not include "scrapings" from mainstream ham feeds in the RSS Feed the Toolbar uses?

Great ideas! Thank you for pointing them out!

73

Steve
K9ZW

http://k9zw.wordpress.com
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