This is a small pet peeve of mine, and a few other people I’ve met through their weblogs:
Les Orchard has implemented a great ‘user-agent’ page in his personal news aggregator. Keith doesn’t like the fact that some aggregators out there use a webpage promoting the aggregator itself as their ‘user-agent’ url, as does John Wiseman. I think it’s pretty annoying that these aggregators don’t allow the user of the aggregator to include some sort of personal URL that would point out to the webpage owner being aggregated that says ‘hey, I’m reading your website’. That’s what Les is doing. He’s saying ‘hey, I like your content enoguh right now to want to read it.’ And that’s a compliment to me, and should be to all of the other sites that he’s aggregating, and for that I thank Les, but I can’t do that to any of the people reading this weblog through radio, or NetNewsWire, or any of the other aggregators that aren’t as friendly as Les’s. So, I think I’ll start parsing them out of my referrals links, until I see them playing nice in the future.
Thanks Les for showing me how it should be done.
[Later] It seems that Aggie does attempt to help the webpage owner, but its dependent on the user to configure the client properly, which I’m cool with. I haven’t checked all of the aggregators out there, but will as I see them show up in my referrers.
If you’re a news aggregator developer and haven’t added a way for the user to specify a personal page that tells a little about them, or maybe is just their weblog/homepage, then please do so in the future… it’ll help all of us weblog writers learn a little about who’s reading our weblogs, and that’ll help us write better, I’d think. It’ll also get you points in my book, and no-doubt, in other weblog writer’s books… thanks in advance.