Thursday, May 15, 2008

Rated Syndication for RSS/Atom

I've often wished that content syndication via Atom and RSS came with ratings. Basically, there are feeds that contain good content, but have entirely too much of it. Consider the prolific output of some person or site like Robert Scoble or Engadget, and imagine that instead of having to choose between ignoring them entirely or drinking from the firehose, you could subscribe to the top X% of their syndicated content.

So when Engadget delivers the news about iPhone 2.0 and rates it 95%, you'll read it, but when they unbox a Samsung Blackjack 2.2 Silver and rate it 30%, you might not even have to skip past it with 'j' in Google Reader.

Heck, Google Reader could even offer to tweak your settings based on usage. "I've noticed you only read about 15% of Robert Scoble's postings. Would you like to subscribe to his top 20% syndicated content instead?" "I see you've read everything that Clay Shirky wrote this week. Would you like to expand your subscription?" "I see you're writing a memo ... "

The ratings could be delivered entirely by the content author/syndicator or through tools they supply for readers to modify the ratings, a la Digg / Reddit.

So, if you're out there working on the next syndication format, please take some kind of content rating into account, save me from the never-ending river of content.

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