Brad Fitzpatrick (bradfitz) wrote in lj_dev,
Brad Fitzpatrick

Proposal: dumb down syndication style lastn page

There have been a number of people lately getting pissed off that their RSS feeds are getting syndicated on LiveJournal. Ignore the paradoxical stupidity of this for a second, and consider one really good argument:
charles: When deciding to make their weblogs available as RSS feeds, most people envision they will be used for either for aggregation: where many feeds are displayed together; or for summary: where a single feed is displayed in a headline-only, or headline+excerpt format. What most people don't envision is the entire content of the RSS file being displayed in a single, rather ugly Livejournal page. This wholesale appropriation and re-framing of content is rather offensive, IMHO.

The "homepage" of a syndication feed on livejournal should be altered to bring up two frames. At the top, a Livejournal navigation bar, including a link to the feed's userinfo, an "add this feed as a friend" button, and a "break out of frames" button. Below that frame, redirect to the homepage of the page that was syndicated, as read from the RSS feed itself. This would get rid of pretty much all the complaints about LJ's syndication, because all that would be left was the same functionality you get out of any of the other RSS aggregator tools: you can either see the posts out of context in amongst everything else, or you can go see the homepage.

Yes, technically you can do what you like with RSS, provided that there aren't any specific copyright restrictions telling you not to. But there's a significant gap between "what is technically permitted", and "what are the actions of a good citizen".
I agree entirely.

I propose we change the default syndication style LASTN page to just be a list of subjects (no text) and instructions for how to add the feed to your friends list for aggregation purposes.

Pros: will offend less people who think we're "stealing" their content and repackaging it. these people don't understand that the LJ friends/aggregation model anyway.

Cons: none? nobody even reads the LASTN page of syndication accounts. LJ users just read them on their friends views.

Barring good objections, I'm going to ask jproulx to make this change tomorrow.

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