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Thursday, April 28, 2005


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From what I understand you are flat-chat already. I've only just come back to FeedDemon after a lengthy affair with Bloglines (which I still love 'cos I can access feeds from any 'puter with a browser).

And wow! What change from the first betas of FeedDemon (I am a license holder of course) - one question however - how do I change the "appearance"? (ie: skin).


Couldn't you (or me/other FD users) write some simple CSS to a style to block ads? My first thought was to block (hide) images in the news items...does that sound plausible? I may give that a try soon.

Peter Tilbrook,
To change the style, hit the Style dropdown button above the main/browser pane.

Hiding images wouldn't work, since many feeds (including my own) have images which relate to the content. You could probably use CSS to hide specific ad sources, but I don't think this would work long-term. Really, the ads would need to be stripped by FeedDemon before being added to the newspaper.

Glad you like the changes, Peter! Yes, FeedDemon is a *lot* different than it was in the early beta stages.

As OSUKid7 points out, you can change the newspaper style by clicking the "Style" button that appears above the browser. And once you've played with that a bit, be sure to give the new "Expando" style a try:


Options are always good in my book, but I agree with Nick's position - FeedDemon should not strip ads, at least not by default. However, providing the user with an option to do so sounds okay to me.

I'm only an occasional newsreader user, so I only use Sage on Firefox, and using AdBlock is sufficient to remove all adverts that people have tried to sneak into their feeds.

I don't see this as a big issue, if a particular feed starts pumping out too many ads or content I'm not interested in then I can simply unsubscribe.

Unlike a lot of advertising I hold the power here, it's my decision whether to subscribe to a feed or not.

Oh no, please reconsider the ads-in-FeedDemon!

>I'd prefer full-text feeds with ads over excerpts without them

Personally, I'd prefer the exact opposite. Write a good excerpt (or even a good headline) and drive me to your site where I can see the ad. Unless the story is very, very short, I never read the whole story from FD's newspapers.

I just wrote about this in my blog, but thought I'd post it here as well. What about an "advanced" version of FeedDemon that has an option to strip those ads (and maybe a few more extra features) for people like me who'd actually pay more to get rid of the ads.

If you support using Firefox as the browser, you can strip them out via some of the ad filtering extensions. Perhaps later versions of IE will have things like this as well. At that point you punt on the issue and let the browsers and users deal with it. I'm not a supporter of advertising embedded in feeds, but I can see that people need to make money. Still, the blog wasn't intended as a direct marketing channel I think. Its a way to garner interest and build a following, all things which lead to increased sales possibly.

Case in point, part of the attraction to Feed Demon was your blog and reading your perspectives as a micro-ISV. Having "buy Feed Demon" banners in your posts wouldn't have converted me to a paying customer. Its the post quality that helped do that. A good blog conveys a human side to what could otherwise be perceived as yet another company/corporation. A lot of sucessful small companies are driven significantly by the owner's ability to communicate and connect with customers, not *just* the raw and talent.

Problem? NO.

Rss Reader - localhost ( - Proxy Local (Proxomitron, Privoxy ...) - Firewall - Internet.

New methods, news rules :)))

Agreed 100%. I think the end user is capable of making his own decisions. If you don't like a TV station with commercials, then you change the channel. If you don't like an RSS feed with commercials, then you unsub.

Is there a violation of the publisher's copyright if you strip out ads? Isn't this the same issue as Google's AutoLink (only this time, the table is turned)?

I'm not well-versed enough in copyright law to say whether stipping ads is a violation, but you can bet it would result in some lawsuits. And yes, there are similarities between this and the AutoLink controversy - in both cases, links are being altered without the publisher's consent.

I'll join in on this since I am a FeedDemon user who tested using Amazon ads in FeedBurner for a week or so.

I only do full-post feeds, so I figured that was the trade-off. I set ads to only appear if a post was over a certain length. This seems to keep most people happy.

I also posted that I was using FeedBurner as soon as I started, with the explicit mention that I was testing using ads for a future site and didn't care if people ignored the ads or used Greasemonkey to get rid of them etc.

For my blog site, the ads ended up being irrelevant for the most part, and I just heard that religious books had started turning up (I'm not a religious blogger by a long shot). For the moment, my ads have been turned off.

The publishers that get upset will be those that attract audiences that both use aggregators and click on ads. Most Adsense publishers receive their income from people who find their site through searches, not feeds, so this is a developing debate, to be sure.

You will incur hellish wrath if FeedDemon automatically strips ads from feeds. The feeds are provided by publishers. If you modify their feeds, they will certainly claim copyright infringement. Can that claim stick? Possibly, but I don't want to say why I think it might (why give away the candy store).

But why not let users apply any Perl-compatible regular expression filters they want?

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