Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Publishing dilemma

Through my referrals, I have found yet another of these aggregator sites, this one entitled Political Opinions. I am on there and that is all well and good, but I do have a slight problem: all of my posts are published in full.

Now, I have mixed feelings about this. Firstly, I am acknowledged so whoever is runnning this is not breaking the terms of my Creative Commons License. Furthermore, I have always been keen to spread my opinions about as much as possible (to the chagrin and sometimes outright boredom of those who know me in full drunken rant) and am happy that people outwith my normal audience might read my stuff.

However, is it selfish to desire that I should get the traffic? After all, the more traffic I have, the more paltry payments from Google Adsense I earn; higher stats would also open up other revenue streams. Besides, it indulges my vanity to gaze at my increasing traffic stats. So I am minded to stop my posts being published in full by this site.

However, that means publishing only a partial RSS feed. I know that I find it mildly irritating to click through to pages and I have always tried to make The Kitchen as easily accessible as possible. (This applies to commenting as well, which is why I always allow anonymous comments and ony put the Word Verification on when I started getting a large amount of spam.)

Given that, I really shouldn't mind in the first place, but I do. So, do I switch to partial RSS feed only, or not?

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

I would prefer that you kept the full feed, rather than a somewhat castrated version.

Anonymous said...

I think you should keep the full version as very few people will continue to use an aggregator site in the long-term.

I reckon most people use feeds to know when sites have updated and, when one site on an aggregator site is consistently good, add the first site to del.icio.us or Google Bookmarks.

james higham said...

This is always the problem - how much to include. Essentially, you want traffic to come your way so if you give all, they're only likely to if they like your style. Hard to tell, really.

Chris Fleming said...

Leave the feed on!

Although the difference between people like me who read the feed directly from you is that we will go to the post in order to read and leave comments.

The Political Opinions site seem to have there own comments section, I guess that an ideal solution would be to give Political Opinions a partial feed while providing us with a full feed :)

David B said...

I hate to disagree but I'd move to a partial feed. It still tells other sites when you've updated but people should come here to read it.

I had the same happen with my site (www.the-spine.com), with the full text and images appearing on another person's site until I stopped the full feed. Now, I know my site isn't the best out there, but I felt annoyed in two respects. Firstly: somebody was taking all of my work to fill a site from which they'd be earning money from Google AdSense. This wasn't occasionally using one of my images, which I don't mind, but everything I created. I was effectively earning them money. Secondly, the people who run these sites create nothing themselves. They don't have to sit down every damn day and think of something original to write. I find blogging harder than I'd ever imagined and I think bloggers who create original content should get the pleasure of the daily hits.

Anonymous said...

I understand the problem, but I find it so much easier reading blogs in my feed reader rather than having to click through to the actual site. You can actually put adverts in your RSS Feed now though, with google adsense I think, so that people like me can carry on reading the rss but be able to click on adverts and give you a bit of a reward :)

Anonymous said...

I agree with David B about others getting google revenue from your site.

If this aggregation site is generating income from your work then they have (arguably) breached the terms of your CC licence. (it has a non-commercial clause)

...but that is creative commons for you.

J Miller

Anonymous said...

Actually during the day I've had a slight change of thought. I looked at the site and noticed I'm on there and I've started being on your side... Especially as the images are hosted at my expense!

Raw Carrot said...

Perhaps someone should develop a password authenticated RSS feed system or something...

David B said...

I agree with what Gavin says about the hotlinking. That's the thing that galled me the most. I then did the old hotlinking trick of changing the .htaccess on my server to feed a slightly oscene picture of John Prescott to this other guy's website. Then I realised that the only reason the hotlinking occurred was because I didn't understand my RSS feed controls and then I just felt bad.

The main problem with the RSS is it stops people getting into the habit of visiting your site. We all want traffic so why should our work deliver it to people who do nothing but gather our feeds? They're nearly as bad as those people who buy up all the good domain names leaving the rest of us to buy domain names with hyphens in the middle... :(

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I'm the creator of the Political Opinions site and noticed this discussion about it. The site was built with the sole aim of providing myself and others with an online, political RSS feed reader. There is no difference in what the Political Opinions site does versus a normal desktop based feed reader, it simply reads the RSS feeds.

I understand peoples concerns about hot linking etc... and I just wanted to mention a few things, because of reading your comments the Political Opinions site no longer displays images. It was never my aim to use up other peoples bandwidth so not displaying any images should hopefully clear that issue up.

The other point I wanted to make is that rather than deciding whether to truncate your feed or not, simply contact me through the Political Opinions website and I will remove your blog. I will also add it to a special list so if anybody tries adding the feed back into the system it will not get listed.

My goal isn't to steal people’s content, on the contrary my hope is to build a valuable resource that will help people discover your blogs and learn more about politics. You will notice that there is no advertising on the Political Opinions site, I intend to keep it that way. I am not trying to profit from the hard work all of the Blog writers do nor am I "as bad as those people who buy up all the good domain names". I am just a guy who wants to read as many political opinions as I can who doesn't have the time to check 100's of different websites each and every day.

Feel free to contact me if you would like your blog added or removed from the site. The site is still in its infancy and is being actively developed, I want to strike the right balance between providing an easy to use, enjoyable experience for the readers as well as making it fair for the writers. If you have any thoughts or suggestions then please do email me with those to.

My email address is contact AT politicalopinions DOT co DOT uk

Kindest Regards,

Grant

Anonymous said...

I've also just turned off commenting on the Political Opinions site. As somebody mentioned above, having commenting on the Political Opinions site detracts from people commenting on the Bloggers site, I want to help foster those sites not hinder them.

Thanks,

Grant

Devil's Kitchen said...

Grant,

I appreciate you getting back to me (us?). I wasn't being stroppy or anything, just looking for opinion. As I said, I would love my opinions -- sweary though they are -- to be read by as many people as possible.

DK

Anonymous said...

Hi DK,

You guys didn't come across as stroppy at all, just protecting your hardwork which I can understand.

My hope is to work with both the bloggers and the readers to form a balance where both sides win. I've already been in discussion with a few Political Bloggers which has led to several changes on the site already and as a result of the feedback from you guys I've made some more changes.

To help explain what the sites all about a little more and also some of my background I've posted an article on the Political Opinions blog: http://politicalopinions.co.uk/blog/?p=4

Thanks,

Grant