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Private blogs and RSS feeds

Nial Kennedy shares some options for implementing private RSS feeds.

Some syndication feeds are not meant to be displayed for the world to see. Our everyday lives contain private and confidential data we wouldn’t want anyone else to see, and especially not search. There are a few options for trying to keep things private in your feed aggregator but the implementations require proper coding and privacy from all implementors.

Examples of private feeds intended for 1:1 communication include bank balances, e-mail notifications, project status, and the latest bids on that big contract. Data in the wrong hands could be dangerous, and many companies will stay away from the feed syndication space until they feel their users’ personal data is secure.

LexBlog is receiving a number of requests for private blogs to be used for internal communications inside a law firm or other organization. We should be rolling out a number of these private blogs in the near future. I’ll keep you up to date.

The requests are arising out of bloggers who are finding blogs and RSS a much more effective means of exchanging info and collaborating than email and other data base systems. And blogs, unlike certain data base knowledge management tools, are intuitive to use. This increases the chances non-participants in current systems will buy in.

LexBlog uses 37signals’ BaseCamp for project management. I receive private BaseCamp RSS feeds throughout the day letting me know the status of projects and what I need to respond to.

Nial mentions HTTP Authentication like 37signals as one alternative. LexBlog IT believes it’s among the best alternatives for now.

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