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Tuesday, July 31, 2007

One problem with RSS

When I was working with an internal communications team on the subject of RSS, we agreed that one of the ways forward was the use of blogs covering a variety of interests - say corporate bankruptcy or intellectual property or to cover a special interest group say Retail.

We recommended that we should use a to use a simple and I thought shortly to be ubiquitous Google Reader which we were going to encourage clients to download so that they could subscribe to our blog (s) and receive notification as to when we had updated the blog via RSS.

Of course this would put pressure on people to ensure that they blogged a little more regularly than once a quarter or at best once a month which can be difficult for time hassled professionals.

However the biggest stumbling block was the marketing departments insistence in
knowing who had subscribed to the site so that they could judge the value of the site. I also realised that these groups would be quite small and we were planning to deliver a very customisable service to these clients/interested observers and to provide a regular stream of information to them.


If you click on the link above you can read Seth Godin's article where he introduces a word that I bet next year we are all going to repeat. He calls it 'bobcasting' Godin highlights that it gives people back control - imagine where we decide what messages we want to receive by using RSS - imagine if you are a solicitor working on a project and when a milestone is reached that a client subscribing to your Project X feed gets an update via a RSS feed rather than the ubiquitous and often lost and very infuriating e-mail.

He goes on to explain that because the Reader separates the inputs by source, he can queue up my messages from other people/sources and read them in sequence. Compare that to the noisy disaster we call an inbox.

I think that this is going to be the next step forward for knowledge management in technology terms and maybe future iterations of Sharepoint 2007 and Lotus Notes may have a RSS reader implanted or perhaps Google Reader will be licensed by Microsoft (doubtful - but a delicious thought).

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