Qué Pasa con Latinoamérica y los RSS

Parece que aquel viejo dicho de “La información quiere ser libre” no aplica en Latinoamérica. Un breve estudio de medios latinoamericanos con presencia en Internet parece indicar que la gran mayoría todavía no adopta un modelo de distribución abierto.

Preparando el website inicial de NotiLat.com visité 115 websites de medios latinoamericanos en Argentina, Chile, Colombia y Venezuela y encontré que sólo 37 de ellos -un 32%- ofrecían algún tipo de canal RSS para distribuir sus noticias. Algunos de estos canales RSS no funcionaban correctamente, se encontraban en alguna carpeta protegida o no se ajustaban a las especificaciones del formato.

RSS in Latin American Media

Adopción del formato RSS dentro de los Medios Lationamericanos

Del 68% restante (78 medios), pude salvar 27 creando un canal RSS artifical con Dapper. El resto de los websites permanece escondido detrás de arcáicos formatos HTML, links que funcionan con javascript y modelos cerrados de suscripción. Es una lástima, pues lo que realmente les hace falta es exposición. A medida que facilitemos la distribución de la información que generamos, facilitamos la publicidad de nuestro servicio.

Y ustedes, ¿qué medios utilizan para mantenerse informados de lo que ocurre en Latinoamérica? ¿Cuáles te facilitan la tarea de compartir su información? ¿Se justifica un modelo cerrado?

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Why Stale Media Won't Survive

I could probably give a thousand reasons why Old Media, referred to by me as stale media, simply won’t make it in the brave new world of new media. It’s the same argument that Apple’s Steve Jobs tries to make in his spinnish way regarding DRM and the music industry, and the same argument that YouTube is trying to demonstrate to the movie industry. In the 21st century, revolution is the same as it was in 1776 when a bunch of ragtag farmers took up arms against the polished steel of English forces servient to King George. Revolution begins at the grassroots.

Stale Media won’t make it in the 21st century trying to play the game the 20th Century way. In the 20th century, information was disseminated from golden palaces set on hills and adorned with letters that struck fear and trembling in those they wrote about. Those letters spelled out words such as ‘New York Times’ and ‘CBS Evening News’.

In 1969, Americans gathered around television sets to witness Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon. In 2001, the tubes were clogged because people were trying to get to the internet to find out about the World Trade Center. In 2007, Google indexes blogs next to mainstream news sites. The relevance has shifted.

Mark Twain famously said, “Never pick a fight with people who buy ink in barrels”, referring to taking on those with the power of the pen – main stream media, or newspapers of his day. That has generally been the accepted rule until new media changed that. Now, the record labels license music to be sold (with DRM) on iTunes and the Zune store among other places. Now, many of the television networks air their shows on the internet and, notably many online news outlets have embraced new media-centric tools, such as Technorati, as a feature of their websites. Blogburst helped by syndicating bloggers to online news centers.

But there is still a bastion of arrogance that will kill the online stale media business if it is not rendered obsolete. That is, this notion that users should have to register to be able to read articles on websites like the Washigton Post or the LA Times.

You see revolutions begin with people like you and me deciding that things can (and should) be different. I have taken the position that I don’t register for these websites. It’s painful at times especially when those newspaper columnists have toiled away at that killer headline. Truth is, I have the world of new media and generally, the content is much more lively.

I leave you with this video (thanks, Seth!) which is an Apple commercial from 1984 when the first Mac would be introduced. Revolution starts somewhere.

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