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Can you 301 an RSS/XML feed?

     
5:20 pm on Jan 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator ewhisper is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



I'm reorganizing some sites, which will cause the feed pages to be changed.

There are people who subscribe to these feeds.

Will the RSS aggregator be able to follow a 301, or is there another way to tell the programs where the info can now be found?

5:35 pm on Jan 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I don't see any reason why not. It should be handled like any HTTP reguest. Haven't actually tested to see but you could run a basic test yourself pretty fast.

Put up a 301 for a non-existent .rss file. Point the 301 redirect to your real .rss script then try to use the fake .rss link. If you get the feed then it's good to go.

Regards

8:20 pm on Jan 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator 10+ Year Member



I need to do a test on this...it seems like it would work in birdmans example, but I am wondering what would happen if you did a 301 from your real rss feed to an html page...

I am guessing the reader would not be able to read the file properly and would deliver an error... it may be an interesting way to crash an aggregator program or website (c:

Another interesting use could be to have one main feed on your site and target by referral or useragent to give different feeds to the different services...perhaps some with ads. I will need to run a couple of tests.

5:55 am on Jan 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Yes, you can 301 an RSS feed.

If you are using IIS, some aggregators will interpret the 301 and update the stored subscription address for you.

2:47 pm on Jan 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator ewhisper is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Another interesting use could be to have one main feed on your site and target by referral or useragent to give different feeds to the different services...perhaps some with ads. I will need to run a couple of tests.

Very interesting idea. Can one deliver a different feed to newsgator, Bloglines, etc based on their ability to serve links and various information in different ways?

See some testing coming up for this one.

4:25 pm on Jan 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Another interesting use could be to have one main feed on your site and target by referral or useragent

Wouldn't something like this borderline on cloaking?

5:31 pm on Jan 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator 10+ Year Member



It would not be borderline... it would be, but if you are doing it to aggregator services I see no need to worry, unless they had "SEO Guidelines" or some sort of TOS telling you not to do so. My fear would be upsetting the actual readers/viewers.
6:11 pm on Jan 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator ewhisper is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



My fear would be upsetting the actual readers/viewers.

Agreed. I'm not worried about cloaking readers. Doubt their technology is even considering this type of system yet.

Although, I want to make sure the readers are receiving quality information in a format they like no matter how the info is disseminated.

 

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