Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Backcountry Bliss RSS Feed Switching to Short Format

Dear Readers,

Backcountry Bliss has really been taking off recently. The subscriber base has jumped about 75% and daily impressions have shot up over 300% since January. Unfortunately not all the attention I've attracted has had a positive impact. A website recently began republishing my feed on their website.

In this case I was lucky that another webmaster tipped me off. I might not be quite so lucky next time. So I've decided to switch over to a summary format for the Backcountry Bliss RSS Feed. This means instead of getting the full text of my posts if you're an RSS Subscriber you'll now get a short summary with a link to the full post.

I dearly hope you'll hang with me for the new format. I didn't jump to this decision easily, or swiftly and it's something I had hoped I'd never have to do because I personally prefer to read full-post RSS Feeds.

This is a big shift for me, so please send your feedback. Do you hate the new format? Do you hate me for switching? Do you love it? Shoot me an email and let me know!

A tiny bit of good news... You can now subscribe to Backcountry Bliss by Email. If you're not RSS Reader savvy.




  1. I am just going to have to unsubscribe. I have a rule to not subscribe to truncated feeds.

    I wish I would know if you changed back, but I won't because i won't be subscribed.

    Too bad about someone scalping your content though.

  2. Jay I totally understand that rule. Though I'd love if you made an exception (of course) I get where you're coming from.

    I really don't enjoy reading truncated feeds myself because I don't like being forced into clicking through to a site. I feel it's heavy handed.

    The problem really is that I just don't have the time or resources to chase down content hijackers.

  3. I don't do the RSS feeds thing because I really enjoy browsing around peoples blogs and sites. We do, after all, painstakingly design them with readers in mind.

    So this won't affect me much, but I wanted to lend my support because I know how nerve wracking it can be make big changes like this, especially when not all of your readers are behind you.

    In the end, you have to protect yourself and your content. You're doing the right thing.

    Cheers, love.

  4. Truncated feeds don't bother me, I get where you are coming from about hijackers. With all things, especially the internet there is no way to please everyone. Do what you are comfortable with and whatever makes your life easier. That is my .02.

  5. Brie - Thanks, Indeed not much will change if you follow via blogger.

    David - Comfortable is perhaps the wrong word because I don't think I've ever been so anxious about making a decision for the blog before. I really appreciate your comment though and everyone who stays subscribed but does not comment.

  6. Your content is solid, that is what will keep people around in my opinion. Also, no change is 100% permanent, if you see a big drop off you can alway change back :) I really enjoy your site, keep up the good work.

  7. While I understand your decision, I despise truncated feeds. Mostly though, I despise them because it feels like the writer has forgotten about me - titles aren't descriptive, the first paragraph is an annoying teaser that has nothing to do with the article, weird punctuation effects are distracting, and so it goes. How about something of a compromise... Will you subscribe too so you can see what we RSSies see and can make accommodations as needed?

  8. I almost always unsubscribe from short format feeds, but I just found a greasemonkey script you can use in chrome or firefox that lets you view the blog article inside google reader http://userscripts.org/scripts/show/9455 so for now I'm sticking around :)

  9. David J - Thanks for the compliments, and indeed you're correct. Hopefully people will hang with the feed at least for a bit to see how it evolves. I'm looking for a compromise because I want to deliver the best stuff I can to anyone interested in the site.

    Liz - I've always been subscribed to my own feed, and I will continue to be. I like to know how formatting changes from the blog to RSS. So naturally I'll do everything I can to make the transition less painful.

    I've already decided to really focus on my first 250 words as a teaser for the article (tune in tomorrow to see what that looks like)

    David K. - Thanks for putting forward that effort that's a very nice find. This evening when I get a chance I'll play around with it and see if it's something I can recommend to all readers. (p.s. I love your work, particularly that beautiful spring photo of punchbowl falls in your masthead)

  10. Twenty bucks says your subscribers increase Chris. You've done a nice job designing your site, and I think when people explore it, they will be more inclined to come back regularly. Let me know where to send the check if I'm wrong! :~)>