My content, my readers, my numbers, damnit: Here’s a funny rant that points out a very real problem: it’s virtually impossible to figure out how many people are subscribed to your RSS feed because of feed aggregators and cachers.
If you took a song and cached it and fed it out to lots of people these days without reporting back to the owner, youâ€™d get sued or slapped in jail.
Well, all I ask that you do for caching my feed is to report back the number of subscribers. Not much to ask. And not doing that is tantamount to theft.
It’s true — Bloglines hits me once every 10 minutes, but that represents 661 people, at this writing. I have no idea how many readers I have through Yahoo and Google, or other services.
The author provides several updates to the post, and apparently Yahoo is going to add the numbers back. Google is considering displaying them.
This is actually more valuable that just having a hit in your logs. With RSS, people don’t just browse like they do on the Web — it’s more binary. They’re subscribed, or they’re not. This means you can count them easier…if subscribing services hand over their numbers.