Hi, DIYgod

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Say no to newsletters

Decline is everywhere, and this is a normal phenomenon. People naturally tend to prefer quick and easy consumption methods. However, one strange trend that I have always been unable to tolerate is that in some places, people abandon RSS and instead use newsletters.

Essentially, email is a private two-way communication mechanism, while RSS is an open one-way communication mechanism. It doesn't make sense to use email for private updates and article distribution, RSS is the more natural choice. Forcing these functions onto email can lead to many problems. These problems make me feel that newsletters are like a tyrant who is unable but desperately trying to prove himself, unable to achieve the desired effect of the publisher and excessively infringing on the user's choice and efficiency.

Five Sins#

Closed Restrictions#

RSS is an open protocol that allows users to independently subscribe to and pull RSS feeds from websites of interest, getting the latest updates and articles without the need for permission from others. Users can also freely choose the desired content through personalized settings in the reader, and can receive notifications through multiple channels, and even subscribe through Telegram Bot.

On the other hand, newsletters are subscription information pushed by publishers to users' private emails, and the entire process relies on the platform, with the channel being completely closed. This closure greatly restricts the user's right to choose, and users are forced to receive fixed information through specific channels and formats under the platform's permission.

Tedious and Inefficient#

In comparison, RSS is more concise and efficient. Subscribed feeds can be centrally managed, and the processes of categorizing, bookmarking, subscribing, and unsubscribing are also very simple.

On the other hand, newsletters mix various emails together, making them very scattered and difficult to manage. It's hard to know exactly what content you have subscribed to and when they will suddenly appear. Moreover, the content formats are also varied, making it very chaotic to view and read, so you can't even bookmark an article, let alone convenient third-party integration.

Information Overload#

Newsletters are difficult to effectively categorize and filter content, and they are mixed with all normal emails, requiring manual organization. This can easily lead to information overload and spam email problems.

RSS, on the other hand, allows for easy categorization and filtering. For unimportant content, you can mark all as read with just one click, completely stress-free.

Long Update Cycles#

Although updates for RSS are not real-time, they are generally counted in hours, and self-built services like RSSHub can even achieve updates every minute. In contrast, the update cycle of newsletters is counted in days or even weeks or months, clearly lagging behind.

Privacy and Security Risks#

The openness of RSS is reflected in the fact that it does not require users to provide personal information, ensuring better privacy and security. However, newsletters require at least an email address, which increases the risk of data leakage or abuse. Moreover, emails may contain malicious links or attachments.

There are also some advantages#

Although I am critical of the inefficiency and limitations of newsletters, I also acknowledge that they have their advantages, and their popularity has some rationale, especially for some publishers in a seller's market. Newsletters can give them more control and click-through rates, making it easier to know who has subscribed to their content and arousing users' attention more strongly through email notifications.

However, from the perspective of a user, I must clearly state that I prefer RSS. I am not willing to give up my own right to choose and efficiency to cater to the publisher's desire for control. In my opinion, the power to access information should be in my own hands, not in the hands of others or institutions. So here, I say no to newsletters.

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