The personal website of Chris Coyier

I Hope Twitter Isn’t “The New RSS”

Bloglines is dead. I never used it, but it’s a household name. I’ve also read that “visits to Google Reader are down 27 percent year-over-year.” Khoi Vin says about RSS: “ultimately I think its evolution augurs even more exciting things.”

I also hear people say in my Twitter stream on a regular basis how they use RSS less and less and that “Twitter is the new RSS.” I’m sure Facebook devotees have thought the same thing, if they ever used an RSS reader to begin with.

I personally don’t find any other technology or service a suitable replacement to RSS feeds and my RSS reader. I love it when people share cool links on Twitter, but that’s not my “source” of news and current information. If a tweet goes down past the bottom of that window, it’s gone forever. I extremely rarely scroll down through time and catch up on old tweets. With RSS however, I read them oldest-to-newest, so I don’t miss anything interesting I might want to read.

I think of Twitter and RSS as completely different. As such, I assume that other people do too. I don’t tweet about every single thing that I publish on my blogs. I don’t want to turn into a link-spewing self-promotional robot, which is what I would become if I tweeted every single article I published and every single other article I read that I found interesting. I don’t have any particular rules about how I use Twitter, I’m just saying don’t count on my Twitter stream as a reliable source of links to my content.

I don’t really want to tell you how to use Twitter either, but, if we are going to replace RSS with something else, can it please please please not be Twitter?