Delicious RSS feeds feedback

Updated 14th November 2012: the solution to get an RSS feed for a generic tag (not a tag by Delicious user) I wrote below back in May no longer works (thanks Judith Townend for mentioning it on Twitter). If anyone has a workaround to get an RSS feed for a tag, please add it in the comments section.

Much of my job at Podnosh involves training people to use social media to communicate and collaborate more efficiently.

A few weeks ago, Steph Jennings and I worked with a group from the Fair Brum Social Inclusion Process. At one point, I was demonstrating how social bookmarks could be useful – using Delicious as an example tool – particularly from the perspective of gathering research, curation and sharing within teams.

The idea is that if one person in your team is doing desk research, gathering links, filtering and sorting, then the individual’s effort involved in doing that work is magnified greatly by small, additional effort – by sharing. One way to do this is for the person doing the research to use social bookmarking to tag and arrange the links, which other people in the team can subscribe to via RSS.

One person asked:

“Do we all need Delicious accounts to see other people’s bookmarks?”

I replied something like:

“No, you don’t need an account. In fact, if someone in your team is already gathering links to research and useful online sources, if she consistently tags her bookmarks – for example, using the fairbrum tag – you can subscribe to their bookmarks via RSS.”

And then, demonstrating this to the group on the projector, I came unstuck. View a tag on Delicious, for example: http://delicious.com/tag/fairbrum

…and, ahem, there is no RSS feed for the tag:

Missing RSS feed on delicious.com when viewing a tag

This was embarrassing. It also confused me, as I was sure you could subscribe to an RSS feed of pretty much anything in Delicious.

So, I did some searching and tweaking the URL by hand. It turns out that you can subscribe to an RSS feed for any new bookmarks with a common tag. You just need to enter the URL by hand in your web browser’s address bar. For example, this gives you a feed of all bookmarks tagged fairbrum:

http://feeds.delicious.com/v2/rss/tag/fairbrum

If you want a feed of bookmarks with a different tag, just swap the tag at the end of the feed URL. For example, to get an RSS feed of bookmarks tagged birminghamuk, use:

http://feeds.delicious.com/v2/rss/tag/birminghamuk

It works but it’s a bit of a faff. Personally, I’d like to see an RSS feed available for any public page I happen to be viewing on Delicious – user, tag, combinations of tags, a stack or search. That would be very useful.

So I let Delicious know via Twitter. I hope they implement my feedback.

  1. gavinwray
    I meant to say: annoying that you need knowledge to hack @Delicious URLs just to subscribe to bookmarks via RSS. Why deliberately hide them?
    Fri, May 04 2012 12:11:33
  2. Delicious_Help
    @gavinwray Hi Gavin. Did you know we offer RSS feeds for recent bookmarks by tag and by tag for specific users: http://bit.ly/Ito17s?
    Fri, May 04 2012 12:11:15
  3. gavinwray
    @Delicious_Help That’s too techy! No RSS icon in browser displayed for users to get recent bookmarks by tag eg http://www.delicious.com/tag/recent/tal12
    Fri, May 04 2012 12:15:36
  4. Delicious_Help
    @gavinwray I’ll forward your idea on to the dev team! The feed URL for recent tags is http://feeds.delicious.com/v2/rss/tag/{tagname}.
    Fri, May 04 2012 12:23:33
  5. gavinwray
    @Delicious_Help Thanks for your help. (I might be wrong, but I think old version had RSS autodiscovery for any page you were on. V useful.)
    Fri, May 04 2012 12:26:26
  • Interesting – I happen to have been looking at something very similar this week. I’m a bit more pessimistic about whether everyone in an organisation will monitor their RSS feeds (like they should) so I’ve extended the principle to include a few more places for subscribing. I’m halfway through a write-up – will let you know when I get a chance to finish it off.

    • Thanks for the comment Chris. Will be interesting to read your write-up and how you’re approaching things.