RSS Not Doing That Many Pull Ups

Steve Rubel shares Yahoo’s data on RSS penetration.

• Awareness of RSS is quite low among Internet users. 12% of users are aware of RSS, and 4% have knowingly used RSS.
• 27% of Internet users consume RSS syndicated content on personalized start pages (e.g., My Yahoo!, My MSN) without knowing that RSS is the enabling technology.
• 28% of Internet users are aware of podcasting, but only 2% currently subscribe to podcasts.
• Even tech-savvy “Aware RSS Users” prefer to access RSS feeds via user-friendly, browser-based experiences (e.g., My Yahoo!, Firefox, My MSN).
• My Yahoo! has the highest awareness and use of any RSS-enabled product.

I know I’m old-fashioned, but I actually enjoy seeing posts in their original context (unless the site is poorly designed).

About David Burn

Co-founder and editor of AdPulp. I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. I worked for seven agencies in five states before launching my own practice in 2009. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.


  1. I realized this same problem when we started our blog and after talking to potential customers realized most people had no idea what RSS even was.
    Everyone gets email though. That is why I really think everyone should use a free service like rssfwd to let readers receive new posts by email. Its a good way to help your blog to reach the other 88% of readers who don’t do RSS.
    (Full disclosure: I liked rssfwd so much that now my company sponsors it.)

  2. RSS feed just hasn’t been promoted the well. Personally, I would much rather open my newsgator, then receive (yet another)email. I think you will see RSS start to make more noise as the sales preople of the world educate their customers.