Giving in to RSS2004-08-24
Posted on August 24, 2004 7:52 am by Shel Holtz
Neville Skype’d me yesterday. As we chatted about this and that, he noted that he was unsubscribing from e-mail mailing lists and switching to RSS feeds. One PR blogger noted he offered his readers the opportunity to switch to RSS (although only three took him up on the offer). And Dan Gillmor said in a Bulldog Reporter teleseminar that he was readying an update to his Dear PR People notice (which hasn’t been updated since 2001) informing readers that he’d prefer to get press releases via RSS than e-mail.
That’s enough momentum for me. My monthly e-mail newsletter will be available as an RSS feed. I don’t expect huge numbers of subscribers to make the switch, though. Those of us who are excited about RSS and blogs and wikis seem to live in a fantasyland where all of our peers, colleagues and audiences are have embraced this new technology. It’s just not so. But at least I’ll be ready when the tide does turn.
It’s an interesting time, to be sure. I remember trying to convince people of the Net’s importance to the communications profession back around 1990-92. Most people rolled their eyes and muttered, “There he goes with that online crap again.” Because the online population has passed critical mass and communicators are wired (to varying degrees of effectiveness), a whole PR subculture has formed around blogs, wikis and this whole notion of participatory communication. But make no mistake: so far, that’s all it is—a subculture.
Most PR blogs I read at some point try to prognosticate the future of blogs. I won’t be sucked into that game—I don’t have a clue. Whatever form it winds up taking, though, it is here to stay, and it will evolve, so I’m game.