Megan Taylor

front-end dev, volunteacher, news & data junkie, bibliophile, Flyers fan, sci-fi geek and kitteh servant

RSS feeds from online newspapers

I’ve noticed some discussion about news feeds lately.

Mindy McAdams chewed out the Gainesville Sun:

I’ve got 15 headlines here, and only five of them are local news. (Two of those are about sports, plus one about football tickets.) Then there is the maybe-editorial. And three letters to the editor. Leaving six wire or syndicated stories in your incredibly puny feed…

Meranda Watling says her paper’s got a good mix of stories, but

There is almost universally no importance hierarchy for daily updates.

So I decided to have a look at how the big dogs handle RSS. In this case, the New York Times.

First of all, the New York Times has their feeds broken up into sections like “Home Page,” “International,” “Technology” and “Week in Review.” I am subscribed to these four sections.

It’s 2 p.m. and I’ve got 11 feeds from the NYT Home Page. Now, maybe it’s the time lag, but only three of these are currently on the Web site home page, and the multimedia on the Web site doesn’t show up in the feeds.

*Note* Feed updated at 2:17 and brought in another story from the home page.

The “International” feed is “World” on the Web site. Again, no multimedia in the feed, but better coordination between the feed and the page.

In my “Technology” feed, I’ve got a couple of the smaller stories, none of the more interesting or larger packages from the site.

Tomorrow I’ll look at how the “Week in Review” feed is organized.

So far it doesn’t look like anyone really has RSS figured out.

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