Damn, Dirty RSS

March 13, 2006 —

Deleting posts about Warcraft has apparently become part of my daily routine. And since I am neither patient, nor interested in Warcraft or its inner teachings, I’m not enthusiastic about it.

And yet, I continue to subscribe to news aggregators and avoid using the word “spam” as I download each new flood of posts loosely related to the original topics I subscribed to.

Now that my honeymoon with RSS is over, I can call it what it is: flawed. It’s not broken, just unruly. And unruly is easy to correct. A new app will be hitting primetime later this month to do just that.

Feed Rinse is an RSS filter that allows users to set up rules similar to a spam filter. The app has an impressive feature list including optional profanity filtering and OPML import/export. A free service will be available when the application goes live later this month. Find out more about RSS filtering at the site.

3 Responses to “Damn, Dirty RSS”

  1. Jason

    Amen Brother.

  2. Harry Slaughter

    RSS is great. Maybe a little too great. It’s far too easy to create noise. You don’t need to figure out how to relay a million emails. You don’t have to figure out how to fake out google in order to mislead searchers to your ad spam site that you try to pass off as legit.

    You just put up a site and let all the aggregators do the work of delivering the noise.

    But we shouldn’t blame RSS for being too efficient at delivering info any more than we’d blame water for being deadly when you bury your head in it for too long. It’s up to the RSS consumer to make sure his intake of RSS is healthy and purposeful.

    Yes, tools that promote a healthier RSS diet are scarce at the moment. But they will come. They will tame RSS to the point that some, like me, will be able to rely on RSS for good, relevant content in reasonable amounts.

  3. Aaron Mentele

    I agree, we can’t blame RSS. We can’t blame the aggregators; they’re just doing what we ask them to do. We can’t really blame the person seeding/posting the article; newsworthiness is in the eye of the beholder. It would be easier if we had a scapegoat. Maybe I’ll blame terrorists – people don’t seem to like them much.