Yahoo Mail RSS Reader Integrates Blogs into Email
Yahoo has announced the extension of its My Yahoo RSS (Really Simple Syndication) services with the addition of RSS feeds in the new beta version of Yahoo! Mail (available by invite only). The Yahoo Mail RSS Reader offering is just one part of the RSS Alert puzzle that Yahoo has launched in its RSS Feed Alert service. This service will allow Yahoo members to be updated via Yahoo Mail, Yahoo Messenger or SMS Messaging whenever the RSS feeds that they have set to subscribe to are updated.
The addition of RSS feeds in Yahoo Mail offers users more of a one-stop scenario of monitoring their incoming mail, top news stories, and favorite blogs. Just as I was typing up this story and about to get lazy and just quote the Yahoo Mail press release, my Yahoo Mail Beta updated with the new RSS feed reader, so I am literally testing this live.
The default feeds in my Yahoo Mail feed reader are the feeds I subscribe to for my My Yahoo page, one for the Search Engine Journal and the other for Yahoo Sports Major League Baseball News. I regularly subscribe to more feeds, but do so in Google Reader and Bloglines, as Yahoo has yet to win me over with their My Yahoo RSS tool.
Yahoo Mail Integration : At first glance, the integration into Yahoo Mail is quite seamless, as an “All RSS Feeds” folder is added under my new Contacts, Calendar, and Notepad folders on the left navigation bar of the new Yahoo Mail beta. As Yahoo Mail is set to automatically update incoming emails, feeds also update at the same pace. As I write, Yahoo Mail RSS Reader has already added some Rueters and MarketWatch stories which are also part of my My Yahoo experience, but were not subscribed to as an RSS subscription option. I’m a bit let down that Yahoo is serving me these feeds, as I have not opted in to subscribing to them (like I have with RSS) and would really like to be able to choose the feeds I’m served, not Yahoo partnered content.
Unsubscribing RSS Feeds : In order to delete these feeds from my Yahoo Mail RSS Reader, it seems that I will have to go into the My Yahoo interface and edit them there, which could take about 5 extra minutes. An unsubscribe button would be appreciated, as one obstacle Yahoo is sure to face with their new Yahoo Mail RSS Reader is the intimacy and reliance on a web mail inbox to be personalized and secure. By having Reuters and MarketWatch appear in my Yahoo Mail RSS Reader, I already feel a bit violated. And as with emails, these ‘feeds’ should offer the option to easily unsubscribe without the end user having to go through multiple Yahoo pages to do so.
Ok, remember this is live, if I extend my All RSS Feeds folder in Yahoo Mail it lists the individual feeds. I now see that in order to unsubscribe I have to mouse over the feed name, right click, and then select remove. Goodbye Reuters “CLICK!”, so long MarketWatch “CLICK.” Now, I have my RSS Feeds right were I want them; with Search Engine Journal and Yahoo Sports – MLB News (the Orioles better act quick because Cleveland is courting Paul Byrd). Oh, there’s a new feed in my list, what’s this?
The official Yahoo Mail Beta Updates Feed! Yahoo, the social media 2.0 company, is reaching out to connect with its Yahoo Mail users via RSS. Nice touch, as although I normally wouldn’t read an email from Yahoo Mail, I’m more than willing to read their RSS feed. I think I’ll keep this one on my list.
Adding an RSS Feed : Now that I’ve gotten rid of the unwanted feeds in my Yahoo Mail RSS Reader, I’m going to try adding a blog.
I was thinking about adding a search related blog like Threadwatch or Search Engine Roundtable, but I have feeds from search blogs popping out all over the place, and think that I’ll add something different : Defamer, the LA Gossip Rag.
After selecting one of the two RSS choices on Defamer (ad supported full content or ad free partial content) I selected full content to see if the Gawker Media ads will be served via Yahoo Mail RSS Reader. So, I flip back over to the Yahoo Mail Beta tab in my Firefox browser and select the ‘Add’ option to the right of “All RSS Feeds.” A box pops up which allows me to add the feed to my RSS content.
In the box, there are multiple feeds from Yahoo content partners such as CNET, Wall Street Journal, Sports Illustrated and Briangle (?) puzzes and games. As entertaining as Braingle (not Briangle) may be, I decide not to select any of the partner feeds and, at the very bottom of the box (which reminds me of a 1998 Joel Comm style email registration form) I insert the Defamer RSS feed. Before pressing the ‘Add’ button however, I have to chuckle at the note at the bottom of the box which pretty much addresses my previous comment : “You were expecting maybe the Taj Mahal? We’ll soon be replacing this beta dialog with one that features feed search, feed import/export, and much more. Stay tuned!” Ok Yahoo Mail, I trust you.
I flip back over to Defamer again to recopy the RSS feed address as I lost it when I copied the Yahoo Mail Taj Mahal note, paste it into the address box and hit “Add”. Defamer is instantly added to my Yahoo Mail RSS Reader list. Wow, the Defamer full content feed works like a charm, with images and advertisements, I’m more or less reading a blog directly from my Yahoo Mail inbox, excellent.
Yahoo Mail RSS Tools : While reading the Donald Trump LA Apprentice post I notice that Yahoo Mail allows me to forward posts from blog to my friends, post to Yahoo 360 blog, or tag it and save to MyWeb, a-ha! Social Media!
Yahoo says there is more to come, so I’m going to sit back and play with their new Yahoo Mail Reader for a couple of days and see if there is anything new that pops up. I do believe that Yahoo Mail Beta is only available for testing by US based users. So in the meantime Duncan, Darren, Sushubh, Nick and others, I hope that you enjoyed the screenshots and live blogging!