Would you like to have all the news, events, and announcements from all your favorite sites automatically delivered to you in one convenient place so that you don’t have to visit each of those sites individually? With RSS (Really Simple Syndication), you can. Thousands of sites worldwide and a growing number at BU now offer RSS feeds of their most popular content. You can subscribe to those feeds. Sites that publish RSS feeds include:
- BU sites – BU Today, Athletics, University Calendar, Daily Free Press, and WBUR.
- News sites – Boston Globe, New York Times, BBC, CNN, and thousands more.
- Sports sites – Boston RedSox, ESPN, and many more.
- Travel sites – Orbitz, Travelocity.
- Career sites – Monster.com.
Most sites publish dozens of feeds on as many topics. You can subscribe to only those specific topics that are of interest to you.
How to Identify Sites That Offer RSS Subscription Feeds
Most sites that publish RSS feeds identify those feeds in one of several standard ways. On the site, look near the bottom of page one of the following clues:
- RSS text link or logo
- XML text link or logo
Those text or graphic links typically lead to a page that contains a comprehensive list of all the RSS feeds that the site offers. Sometimes, the RSS link is more buried. At Monster.com, you won’t see the RSS logo (XML), until after you conduct a job search. But on the results page, you have the option to subscribe to those results.
How to Read Your Subscriptions
Before you begin subscribing to RSS feeds, you need to make sure you have a place to read those subscriptions. Subscribers have several options for reading news. They can use:
- A customizable personal site, such as my.yahoo.com or the new service currently in development at BU called My BU.
- A desktop RSS news reader or aggregator, available for both Windows and Macintosh, such as FeedReader and Vienna.
- An RSS browser plug-in, such as Pluck for IE and Firefox.
- An RSS-enabled browser, such as Safari.
Which application you use to read news feeds is up to you. You can use more than one, if you like.
How to Subscribe to an RSS Feed
Once you have selected and set up your personal site, news reader, or an RSS-enabled browser, you can subscribe to any RSS feed in a number of ways. You can:
- On the RSS listing page, drag the orange RSS button for the item you’re interested in into your News Reader.
- On the RSS details page, drag the URL of the RSS feed into your News Reader.
- On the RSS details, cut and paste the URL of the RSS feed into your News Reader.
Note: If you use My Yahoo or other web portal sites to read your subscriptions, please follow the procedures described on those sites to subscribe to a feed. Look for text similar to, “Add RSS by URL.”