why i'm old-fashioned

Tuesday, January 27, 2004, at 01:37PM

By Eric Richardson

Sean Bonner recently wrote a blog post titled "Why aren't you using RSS yet?" In it he raves about what RSS -- and more accurately RSS readers -- has done for his experience of the web. I know a lot of people who would agree with him.

I don't.

I don't like viewing a site via an RSS reader. To me it seems that by taking the content out of the confines of the site, and presenting it in isolation, you cut out a large part of the experience. When I put together my site, I don't just think just of the content but also the presentation. I like the way my site looks. I intend that look to in some possibly imperceptible way to alter how you experience the information that I provide. Sure, if you pull my RSS feed into a reader you'll get the things I write. But they'll be orphaned, severed from the contextualization of the environment in which I have placed them.

Maybe this is all egotistical COMM major BS, but to me it means something. When I go to other people's blogs, I prefer to do it via a web browser. Their style colors my perception of their content. I just haven't seen any concessions to this need for context in an RSS reader.