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RSS feeds, etc. Was: iPhone 4 for scholars

Recently, I published a post on my blog that experimented with 
javascripts to add functionality (subtext annotations and 
geoawareness). One thing that happened was that people who read 
the blog via rss readers were flushed out because the added 
scripts and CSS functionality were unavailable to them. They HAD 
to go to the blog to get the full experience. This got me 
thinking along the lines of Peter's last sentence. RSS 
aggregation can disrupt some of the business models of a blog, 
while enhancing others. When Joe posts a link to SK on this list 
and stimulates discussion, some of the value of SK leaks to the 
list- the discussion quality, the community, etc., while at the 
same time some of the list's value leaks to SK.

The fact is that Peter IS in control of his content consumption 
on SK or any blog. At the same time there are tradeoffs between 
how much the medium can offer and how much of the experience that 
Peter is willing to allow the media to provide.

I would rephrase Peter's last statement. It's not that "readers 
should be in control", it's that "readers have a variety of 
needs, and publishers that accommodate those needs will, in the 
long run, profit from doing so."


(the blog post I refer to is at 
You MUST visit to get the intended experience; I apologize for 
any inconvenience that may cause.)

On Jun 30, 2010, at 8:43 PM, Peter B. Hirtle wrote:
> Scholarly Kitchen does have an RSS feed, but it is seriously
> flawed.  Rather than offering the full feed of posts, it only
> offers a few lines, at which point one needs to leave one's RSS
> reader and go to the web site to see the full essay.  The
> publisher of Scholarly Kitchen has indicated to me that he is
> more interested in controlling how people interact with its
> content, ostensibly for the benefit of its authors, then allowing
> readers to shape the reading experience as they see fit.
> It is this sort of attitude that is going to kill scholarly
> publishing and why I don't bother with the postings (except when
> Joe Esposito insists that there is something important there).
> Readers, not publishers, should be in control of how we consume
> content.
> Peter

Eric Hellman
President, Gluejar, Inc.