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What is RSS?
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What is RSS? Print Email

Please grab our RSS feed and add it to your news reader. Simply make your selection from the list on the left below the main menu.

Not sure what this is or how to grab the feed? Read on for additional information that will help you understand and use RSS feeds.

RSS Defined

RSS stands for "Really Simple Syndication." In other words, someone can publish content on a website but also make it available to you in an RSS feed that you can view in your favorite news reader. This is much like a syndicated newspaper column that is seen in various newspapers from coast to coast. It's one column that possibly originates in Chicago, but many other papers print it for their readers in Atlanta or Los Angeles.

RSS accomplishes this same task for websites owners who wish to make it more convenient for you to read their content. Instead of you having to visit their website everyday, you can pull in their content (along with several other websites' content) to one single location. What a time saver!

How do you know if an RSS feed is available?

Any time you see a little orange button like this What is RSS?, it indicates that the site syndicates its content. Usually, the button points directly to the site's RSS file. (The page looks like raw code, but don't let it scare you!)

Do I need a special reader or expensive software to pull in news feeds?

Not necessarily. These days you'll find that many content and membership websites such as My Yahoo, My AOL, My MSN, and Google Reader, allow you to get RSS feeds of your own choosing without installing special reader software on your computer. Look to the left and you will see a long list of buttons featuring the names of these websites. If you use or belong to any of these, simply click on the corresponding button and follow the directions to add this feed to your desktop.

What if I only use My Yahoo and I find a site that has an RSS feed but doesn't display the "Add to My Yahoo" button?

Don't worry, you can still grab the feed. First you'll need to find the actual RSS URL. You do this by right-clicking on the orange XML button What is RSS?  to "Copy Shortcut." Or click on the "XML" button and use "Ctrl-C" on your keyboard to copy the URL found in the address bar of your browser. Then you login to My Yahoo, click on "Add Content" at the bottom of the page, then choose "Add RSS by URL" beside the RSS search box.

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