Author Archives: Steve

Using Your RSS Reader For You Tube

If you like RSS you tend to want to have all your content in one place—your RSS reader.

But if you also follow some channels on YouTube this is a problem, since Google doesn’t publish RSS feeds for channels. They want you to start and stop on YouTube, basically.

So here’s how to create an RSS feed from any YouTube channel.

Steps

  1. Go to the YouTube channel you want to track
  2. View the channel address
  3. It will look something like: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC39ZfoNWe5zYFD1D0hTRRsQ
  4. Get the value for that element (it’ll look something like UC39ZfoNWe5zYFD1D0hTRRsQ
  5. Replace that value into this URL:
https://www.youtube.com/feeds/videos.xml?channel_id=UC39ZfoNWe5zYFD1D0hTRRsQ

Now you can paste that into any RSS reader and you’ll be able to track when new content is posted.

If you don’t see the Channel ID in the address of the channel.

  1. Go to the YouTube channel you want to track
  2. View the page’s source code
  3. Look for the following text: channel-external-id
  4. Get the value for that element (it’ll look something like UCBcRF18a7Qf58cDRy5xuWdE
  5. Replace that value into this URL:
https://www.youtube.com/feeds/videos.xml?channel_id=UCBcRF18a7Qf58cDRy5xuWdE

Now you can paste that into any RSS reader and you’ll be able to track when new content is posted.

With some channels if you go to their videos it will just show the channel name like this:

https://www.youtube.com/user/dpreviewcom/videos

Just copy and paste that in to your RSS reader, it might work and it will save you from having to dive through the page source code to find the channel ID

I use Protopage as my RSS reader and home for all my bookmarks, I monitor hundreds of channels and blogs using this site.

Sharing Flipboard Magazine Articles on Twitter Automatically

You can easily share posts on Twitter or other social media networks from within the Flipboard app. However, if you want it to share posts automatically then it is actually quite easy to do with the use of an external service.

Each magazine on Flipboard has an rss feed already. So each time you add an article to a magazine that RSS feed gets updated. The rss feed address is the web address of your magazine with .rss added on the end of it. You can test this out by putting the address with .rss on the end in to your own RSS feed reader, in my case I use Protopage.

Having an RSS feed means we can easily direct new entries to a Twitter account using a free service called IFTTT or ‘If This Then That’ You create a simple ‘recipe’ within the app/site to do what ever you want.

In this case you take the RSS feed and send it to Twitter. Within the ‘recipe’ you can add things like ‘Via Flipboard [Magazine address] or similar and also add appropriate HashTags on each tweet.

I’m assuming you already have set up an IFTTT account and that you have given IFTTT access to a Twitter account.

So log in to your IFTTT account and click on My Applets and then ‘New Applet’ and you should see the following screen.

Then click on the + This and you will go through to the Choose a service.

Click on RSS feed and you will get the ‘Choose Trigger’ screen, click on New Feed Item.

You then need to add in the address of the RSS feed of your magazine. To get the address go to: https://flipboard.com/profile, then click on your magazine so you are viewing it in the browser. Then select the address from the address field of the browser and paste it in to the Feed URL field on IFTTT, and then add .rss at the end of the address. Then click Create Trigger.

We then have to tell what IFTTT should do every time it finds a new item in your rss feed. Click on +that

In this example we are going to output the new item to Twitter, so click on Twitter in the Choose action service screen, but you could also post to a Facebook page, your blog, email or a host of other services!.

Click on Post a tweet in the Choose action screen.

Left as it is IFTTT will post a tweet with just the Title and the link to the post.

But you can add hashtags to your tweet and may be a link back to your magazine or your website. Be aware of the character limit on Twitter (280 characters) so you might need to experiment with this field. Click on Create action.

This screen lets you review the whole applet. Click Finish to finalise the applet.

 

You can test your applet by flipping a new article in to your magazine and then check your Twitter feed to see the result.

I’ve been using this method experimentally with a few of my magazines for a few month and it has generated a bit more traffic to the magazines as well as to the sites the articles were from, including my own blog.

Blogger/Blogspot emails

If you use Blogger/Blogspot for your blog you will have noticed that since 25 May you will not have received emails containing the comments.

Also missing are emails about comments that need moderating or emails of new posts on your blog.

This was all connected to the new GDPR regulations and permission to send emails. Even though you had put these email addresses in yourself years ago!

There is now a simple fix, starting with emailing new comments:

  1. Go to your blogger dashboard.
  2. Select Settings (it’s in a left hand menu).
  3. Select Email.
  4. In the box for comment notification email, remove all email addresses and selected “save settings” so that no email address was in the box.
  5. Then typed in your email address and hit “save settings”.
  6. You will then receive an email from blogger asking you to “subscribe” to comments on your blog.

Each emailed comment then has an unsubscribe link/option at the foot of the email, therefore they now comply with GDPR.

You can do the same trick for Comment Moderation. Comment Moderation is also in Settings in Posts, comments and sharing, Comment moderation.

Again do the same, remove the email address, save settings, put in the email address then save settings.

You will get another email asking you to confirm with a link.

‘Email posts to’ is in Settings, Email just below Comment Notification.

I hope that solves the issues for you. I have been missing getting the emails when new comments arrive on the blog!