Do You Subscribe To Your Own Blog Feed? Maybe You Should!

Image of RSS iconIf you’re not already subscribing to the RSS feed from your own blog using a feed reader e.g. Google Reader it’s time you did! You can’t always guarantee readers will tell you there is a problem πŸ™‚ .

What happened to Martin Weller (The Ed Techie) yesterday is a classic example of the need to subscribe. Martin uses Typepad which unfortunately experienced a brief problem with their feed service on TypePad. Some TypePad users were affected, where another blog’s entries appeared to be coming from their feed.

Yesterday in the feed from Martin’s blog was 10 new posts on motherhood which surprisingly enough weren’t his, but were from Jumping Monkey’s blog. I read his blog and didn’t realise the problem due to the sheer number of blogs I subscribe to; I thought I must have added an unusual blog to my readings.

motherhood.jpg

He wasn’t alone in experiencing this problem; Craig’s Movie Blog and Not About Tech were both replaced with The London Blog. Michael Willits (Not About Tech) contacted Typepad who advised him that the problem was with Typepad and not Feedburner.

Added benefit of subscribing to your own blog feed is you see your posts how they are seen by readers. Means you pick up any problems such as issues with font sizes, image size/alignment and removal of content (e.g. embeds like SlideShare, Voicethreads and videos may not appear in your post when viewed in a feed reader — appears to be influenced by which blog platform you use).

While I’m at it! My personal request is if you want me to subscribe to your posts please make sure you have your feed set to full feed not partial. I virtually never click on the more link for posts that are partial feeds — I don’t have the time SORRY.

And if you’re enjoying this blog, please consider Subscribing for free

20 thoughts on “Do You Subscribe To Your Own Blog Feed? Maybe You Should!

  1. Great post! I subscribe to my own just because I want to make sure I can see it like others do but I worried that maybe it looked egotistical. Your points are good reasons for me to do this and now I don’t feel bad. πŸ™‚

    Pat Reply

  2. Sue –

    Thanks for this reminder! I just checked Google Reader to make sure I was subscribed to my blog and then double-checked that it was set to full feed. All looks good – this is a good reminder for bloggers πŸ™‚ After your twitter-snafu and crazy comments you were *making*, it’s not all that surprising that it can happen to blog feeds as well. I actually had a mystery author on one of my posts last week, which was kind of interesting!

    Kate Olson Reply

  3. This is a really good idea, Sue. The posts look quite different somehow. It was quite reassuring for me – they do not look too long and the images make the post look a lot more interesting. Spotted a spelling mistake though. cheers Sarah

    Sarah Stewart Reply

  4. Thanks Sue, looks like I owe Feedburner an apology. I do subscribe to my own blog feed (on the basis I’m my ideal reader), but the advantage of being part of a global twitter network is that an Australian reader had picked it up before I was even awake. What it made me realise was how vulnerable I was – if I lost my feedburner feed it meant having to start again. I was in a panic yesterday! Anyway, I’m glad what will be known as ‘the motherhood phase’ is now over. Thanks for your help in this.

    Martin Reply

  5. Sue,

    Excellent and important post. I do subscribe to my own blog and podcast. It has helped me catch errors, broken feeds, and broken links.

    Sage advice for anyone blogging…subscribe to your own work.

    Mike

    Mike Berta Reply

  6. Hi Sue,
    Thanks to the 31 Day Chocolate, I mean Blogging Challenge last year, I do subscribe to both my text and audio feed. Not to bump up my subscriber numbers but to check that it works okay (especially the audio one – always listen to my posts to ensure they make sense when read out loud!) and know that my readers will be able to read what I wrote too.

    Laura Whitehead Reply

  7. Hi Sue. I’ve subscribed to my own blog for quite a while and find it helpful. As in just now, while I’m catching up with my Reader…I’ve just noticed that my two most recent posts haven’t shown up. What is the usual cause for this? And what is the best thing to do about it? As far as I know, I haven’t intentionally changed anything with my feed. Thanks. –Paul

    Paul Hamilton Reply

  8. Yes yes, it happened to me too – I got goss on mine – now I do like goss, but…… I suppose at least there weren’t too many bottoms on there….

    Harriet Wakelam Reply

  9. Pat – glad that I put you at ease about subscribing to your own post. Definitely a must so that you can pick up problems and make changes.

    Kate – there are so many weird things that can happen to your blog posts in RSS feeds – Martin’s was very unusual. But good to pick up what is stripped from your post and how it looks visually.

    Sarah – images definitely make a difference. I need a few more images lately. I hope I didn’t make a spelling mistake?

    Martin – after getting a dirty mouth on Twitter the other week I can understand how stressed you must have felt. Glad to have been of help.

    Good point Mike – I’ve not been checking my links and probably should. Duh.

    Paul – I’m glad we worked together to sort out the problem with your feed and not sure what went wrong πŸ™‚

    Agreed Gary I really need to check mine out again in another reader. Plus I should check out my blog in a few Web browsers.

    Thats so funny Harriet – didn’t realise that it happened to you also. Did you write some cool stuff?

    Sue Waters Reply

  10. Hey, glad to see I wasn’t alone. I’m the owner of the Not About Tech blog, and I must say it was an interesting experience getting emails from friends asking me why I decided to change the focus of my blog! Thankfully the matter wasn’t a big deal in the end, but I definitely agree that subscribing to one’s own feed is critical, especially if the blog pulls in any revenue. – All the best, Michael

    Michael Willits Reply

  11. @Michael it must have been scary for those that experienced this problem. I find subscribing to my own feed also notifies me of formatting issues e.g. images in bad locations. Glad your blog is back to normal.

    Sue Waters Reply

  12. This is one of the best tips you have given me about blogging, so thanks for that.

    As you know, I have just written a post about my experiences of twitter.

    http://tinyurl.com/3ghhm5

    I have been trying to write this post for last few days and have been keeping it as a draft. When I finally published it today, it did not appear at the top of my posts but 2/3 posts down the list at the time when I started writing it. Consequently, it has not appeared in my blog feed, Google Reader. So I am concerned that others have not see it either. Any suggestions how I can manage this? Thanks a lot, Sarah

    Sarah Stewart Reply

  13. I never considered previewing my blog in a reader. I always looked to see how it looked on my blog, but not the tool I use to read blogs. It seems like a no-brainer that I should think of people reading my blog the way I read their blogs, but it never occured to me.

    Thanks for the tip!

    Mr. James Reply

  14. I will set myself up. I am setting up my first blog. This will be very beneficial!
    Thank you!

    concordsouthside Reply

  15. @Mr James I was also like that – when I realised I should be viewing my own blogs in my reader I was like DUH. I also regularly check in a range of Web browsers.

    @Concordsouthside Good luck with blogging and glad you found the post helpful

    Sue Waters Reply

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