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August 06, 2006


Harold Jarche

For a "learning professional", he sure doesn't have much to say himself.

Jym Brittain

Mr. Long,

Thank you for your inquiry, and for posting your concern as well as your email to your website.

My web site serves as a news aggregator of existing RSS feeds. Those feeds are collected on an hourly basis and displayed for readers where ever they may be. The nature of RSS feeds allow for this aggregation as well as links to the original content. As you may have noticed the articles collected may or may not contain the entire article, yet they all DO link back to the entire article. Every article also has a link labelled "source" that lists all the articles aggregated from each RSS source as well as the URL for the feed

Simply search google for the term "news aggregator" for more understanding of the process. My site is not a blog. It is a news aggregator. Individuals with accounts on my server, may if they choose keep a blog.

If you object to your content being syndicated, turn off the syndication function of your blog.

Jym Brittain
Editor/Owner Technology4teachers.com

Jym Brittain

Mr. Jarche,
What I had to say was posted in email before I had the "pleasure" of reading this blog. My complete reply is on my website, http://technology4teachers.com/node/15121

Is the term news aggregator that difficult to comprehend?


I see this one as a design issue. Anyone looking at that page like at a glance would assume that this was Mr. Brittain's personal blog containing content generated by him. It would not be at all difficult for him to make it obvious that this is a canned aggregator of other people's material -- simply including the original author's name in each post would make a huge difference.

Looks like he's put a large disclaimer post at the top of the main page, which is good...and removed the google ads, which somehow makes it much less odious.



Yes, you are right -- it is a design issue in many ways, and Jym made good steps recently by adding the disclaimer. You still have to be 'motivated' to read beyond the first line to get to the disclaimer, but I can't fault him for effort. Ultimately, it's about transparency, which is an off-shoot of intention and design.

Google ads are fair. There is no law that a blog or aggregator or web site or whatever should/should not have ads. We all need revenue to make the world go round, and buy milk each Sunday morning. But it did suggest at first that the site was purely profiting off of other people's work...which did bother me, but I didn't worry too much about it because I didn't think there was a lot of money being made. Principle, problem; reality, minor splinter of concern. But I do think he made a solid move by removing them to at least demonstrate a good-faith effort in terms of clarifying that his use of an aggregator (with the original person's name -- excellent!) was not meant to profit off of others. So, again, he did the right thing given a range of options.

Jym wrote a strong email to me and another gentleman recently (a few days after his initial emails/comments that expressed frustration) talking about his re-thinking of his initial site and its use today. I was impressed by it and respect is intentions. The 'argument' is over.

I continue to believe that transparency is king, whether you or I choose or not. The blogoshere will hunt the wabbits one way or another!

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