In my recent post about blogging pet peeves, I overlooked a major one: not having an RSS feed!
I am a big-time consumer of content via RSS — so much so that sometimes when I click through to read a post on its website, I realize I had no idea what the website looked like until just then, despite having read its content for years.
So when a site doesn’t offer a feed, I begrudgingly resort to alternative ways of getting my fresh content fix. If I want to have site updates delivered to my Google Reader account, page2rss is my go-to service. It creates a feed from changes on a given website, which you subscribe to in your reader, and voila — makeshift RSS feed. If I want updates delivered by email, I use WatchThatPage, which has lots of options for customizing its notifications.
Neither of these services is perfect – for instance, lots of sites have autogenerated content such as date and time, rotating banners or other images, or site counters, and as far as I know, there’s no way to filter out these types of “non-content” updates. But beggars can’t be choosers and since these two services are free, I’m not complaining.
Personally, I think websites have no business calling themselves blogs if they’re not going offer a feed (I’m looking at you, Tourism Winnipeg blogs!) – so please, don’t make this particular blogging faux pas!