Twitter is not a RSS reader no matter what @Scobleizer says

I was listening to a recent TWiT episode with the regular roundtable discussions and Robert Scoble mentioned how Twitter has become his RSS reader.  No matter how you slice it, Twitter is a news source and real-time feed, but couldn’t be considered a RSS reader.

With any current reader, you are able to control subscriptions, read and unread marks, better sharing integration across networks and exploring and finding of other feeds through services like Toluu.  Twitter is a force feed of data from anyone that passes a link along to you.

While you build your own community of people you wish to follow, actually parsing the content is another thing, mainly when you follow ~16k people like he does.  This would be incomprehensible even in a feed reader to keep up with the sheer volume.

Twitter is about getting in and out of the stream.  Taking a dip in the information flow.  You only drown if you choose.  RSS readers store the data for retrieval when you are ready and are sorted nicely into tags and groups.  Twitter is not close to this with lists yet and has quite a way to go, as I have noted.

With such add-on tools as the Feedly extenson for Firefox, your RSS feeds turn into a newspaper, list or magazine covers with incredible amounts of sharing integration.

Twitter works in the reverse since people need to be present and watching the stream to catch what you send out.  Not many are able to watch ~16k feeds and have the time to see each and every one.  Now imagine them in real-time scrolling by.  You would not be able to click to read links by the time a slew of others roled across.

I think he is right in that is is a great news source, that I use as well, and has immediate impact on trends and breaking stories.  But for real commentary, RSS is here to stay.

P.S. yes I follow Robert and I think he follows me as well (if I go use the tools on EverythingTwitter to verify).  But I still don’t expect him to see my content scroll by.  So I tossed an @ symbol in the title instead.  Get it?  My content will scroll by quick, but a conversation marker can be seen across his Twitter client.

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  • http://scobleizer.com Scobleizer

    I saw this in my flow. Thanks! I agree with you, but those features aren't important to me, or, if they are, they aren't as important as having 16,000 news sources all organized in lists and all in a system that comes up almost instantly. Google Reader still takes me more than 20 seconds to open up.

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  • http://tubejumper.com smilbandit

    load time is important but i'm not sure it's exactly the nail you'd want to continuously hammer. for me twitter consumption is like walking, it allows you to smell the roses, see the sights, talk to the people you come across and is generally nicer if you have time to do it. RSS Readers are like a car, nicely appointed, doesn't require as much work and gets you there faster. For someone like me who pops in and out through out the day, not really interested in being social and doesn't like to reread stuff, my RSS reader is what I prefer. Coming from Detroit, where right now you have to let your car warm up a few minutes before driving, but could start walking right away. Load time's not a big deal, I'll still pick driving.

  • IdoNotes

    I guess I would ask how you manipulate, mark, tag and work with the lists and sources. I admittingly use Feedly more than Google Reader myself, but have adjusted on how to share, save, mark, and discover more sources. That is one thing Twitter doesn't do is suggest sources.

    I'm with the idea on using Twitter as a source, but even with all the tools in EverythingTwitter I find it hard ot find the right one to make it a good RSS management feature.

  • IdoNotes

    LOL, exactly. The tools I get from waiting the 20 seconds is what makes it worthwhile. Glad you found the article!

  • http://scobleizer.com Scobleizer

    For source suggestion you should check out http://listorious.com

  • http://scobleizer.com Scobleizer

    For source suggestion you should check out http://listorious.com

  • IdoNotes

    Oh most definitely as we highlighted them on EverythingTwitter a while ago. I also peek at lists you have created and some others. It would be nice for Twitter to show the top followed lists too