Keeping the Feed Beast Chained

If you’re anything like me, your list of feed subscriptions is an unruly beast at best, and an absolute horror of time and attention devouring evil at worst. Yes we need to be subscribed to feeds in order to blog on our given subjects, but is having over 400 subscriptions good research, or poor feed management?

Recently i engaged in a little conversation about the amount of feeds one could realisticly keep up with. It turns out, that the figure is around 150. Bearing in mind that at the time I was at well over 400, i’ve been on a major feed culling mission for a week now. Currently im winning the battle, but it’s tough, really tough.

Today i see that Duncan is talking about time/feed management and his points hit home with me in a big way. He says he’s down to 88 and i seriously envy him.

I shake my head when I read bloggers boasting how they have 400-500 subscriptions in their feed reader accounts. I peaked at 120 and recently I’ve actually been cutting them back, and including links to a number of my own sites I’m down to 88 feeds at the time of writing, and will probably change a few more over the next couple of days. This reduction at a time that I’ve actually increased my level of blogging 2 fold and over more sites. You’ve really got to start asking questions about the feeds you read if you want to maximse your blogging time.

Reducing Feed Intake

So what can you do? If you’re starting out with a new site, maybe not much, as a lot of feeds help give you a good overall feel for a niche, but if you know your subject and neighborhood well, try some of the following:

  • Use advanced Keyword searches at Yahoo! News
  • Subscribe to Technorati tags (provided it’s not too competitive a list, otherwise you’re just subscribing to spam)
  • Find the “linkblogs” in your neighborhood, subscribe
  • Use – trust me on this, it’s killer good!
  • Put the feeds that give you least, but you still need, in a “if i have time” folder. And read them, if you have time.

I’d love to better tune my feed reading. If anyone would care to share a few tips on how they maximize their productivity with regards to feed management im all ears!

So, how do you manage your feed lists?