RSS truncation shouldn't be an either/or choice

Jenny Levine asks: " Should I Truncate My RSS Feed ? I know the point of a news aggregator is to scan, but I personally like not having to go to each site to read a whole post." Jim McGee adds:

A news aggregator... uses technology to eliminate some of the time-wasters in our environment. One implication is that for sources of information to be useful may depend on how well they can fit themselves into my evolving information/knowledge environment. This runs contrary to most current design thinking that attempts to exert complete control over your information experience.

For my purposes, I much prefer to get Jenny's stories in full form. It allows me to integrate the considerable value of her insights into my information environment.... I want to be able to exert control over my information environment, not be subject to the varying design sensibilities of different web sites. [ McGee's Musings]

I voted Yes on Jenny's survey (which is running near 50/50 just now). But in truth, it's a choice she ought not have to make. For the reader, RSS truncation trades immediacy for scannability. Ultimately, the author should provide for both. And news aggregators should be prepared to work with both. Jim might want all his feeds in long form. Or perhaps, all of Jenny's feeds in long form but mine as blurbs.

It's not rocket science. I guess the place to start is with variants (blurb plus full item) in my own feed. This will also be a chance to test out what happens when I add experimental tags.

Former URL: