Jeremy Felt

On RSS Cloud and pubsubhubbub (Part 1) – Publishers Have Some Work To Do

The web is live.

Yes, seriously, it is there there already.

I built a public aggregator that supports RSS Cloud and PubSubHubbub. Dave Winer has a public aggregator that supports RSS Cloud. Lazyfeed has an aggregator that supports RSS Cloud and PubSubHubbub. Google Reader has started to adopt PubSubHubbub. Many more are on the way, if not already here. A few more light switches to flip and all of a sudden you are playing catch up.

Who’s you? Let’s try who isn’t first.

CNN has it. Their news wire feed has been RSS Cloud enabled almost since the moment that Dave Winer announced support for RSS Cloud in Wordpress.

Om has it. Another that has been RSS Cloud enabled since the beginning.

Techcrunch has it two ways – RSS Cloud through the main feed and pubsubhubbub through the FeedBurner feed.

Gizmodo supports pubsubhubub through FeedBurner. GDGT supports pubsubhubbub through their native feed.

Who doesn’t?

Engadget has nothing enabled. They’re now the last source of gadget information. NY Times – nothing, LA Times – nothing, AP – nothing, Washington Post – nothing, MSNBC – nothing, Fox News – pretends to, Reuters – pretends to. More detail on the “pretends to” later, anybody else I’m forgetting?

So what do you do as a publisher?

You Read and then implement.

If I can ship an RSS Cloud aggregator in a little over a week from scratch, and add support for pubsubhubbub in a night, all while working a full time job during the day that has nothing to do with either…. you can afford to spend some time figuring out the best way for you to publish content using real time tech.

Which one is better? I don’t make those decisions. Which one should you implement? Whichever one you ship first. Just do it already and get on board.

What shouldn’t you do as a publisher?

I’m not usually one to say this, but don’t put all your faith in Google. Not yet at least. Just because you’re site uses FeedBurner and FeedBurner has decided they support pubsubhubbub, doesn’t mean that your content is actually being pushed in real time. More than likely you’re setup to ping FeedBurner separately. Feedburner then decides when to poll you before turning around and notifying the hub that the content is updated.

Instead, take control of your publishing process. Your web folks should be able to make the basic notifications required for both RSS Cloud and pubsubhubbub to work. And this should something that is done separate from the FeedBurner process. Don’t count on them to ping on their time. Ping when you publish.

The web is live, RSS and Atom are alive, and content is flowing in real time. I’m harnessing it, and you will be soon. If you are a publisher, you do not want to miss this boat.