RSS Feed Nickname Contest: Voting Has Closed

Sunday Feb. 29 was the FINAL DAY of voting for the CONTENTIOUS RSS Feed Nickname Contest (Contest info)

From the whittled-down list of 46 front-runner nicknames, these garnered the most votes:

  • 1st place: Elert
  • 2nd place: WebFeed
  • 3rd place: Webstract
  • 4th place: Efeed
  • 5th place: Grapevine
  • Tied for 6th place: Feed, NewsFeed, and SiteFeed

The final decision will be made shortly by our panel of judges…

Elert recently pulled into the lead thanks to the campaign waged by contest entrant Tristan Louis in his weblog If you wish to encourage people to vote for your favorite nickname, here’s the URL to publish:

One CONTENTIOUS reader pointed out to me via e-mail that “Elert” is a term already adopted by several sites for their e-mail newsletters. I’m aware of this, and actually that’s the main reason why “Elert” did not make it onto my personal list of top contenders. “Elert” is also a German surname, for that matter. However, we’re not seeking a trademarkable brand name, company name, or domain name here. This contest is about choosing a functional common nickname. It is possible that “Elert” (or the hyphenated version, “E-lert”) might eventually get used with respect to what we now call RSS Feeds in a way similar to the term “e-mail.”

Also, “Grapevine” was recently excoriated in the geek-oriented weblog CogDogBlog. Sadly, this is yet another example of how some software developers really don’t seem to be able to grasp that the rest of the world doesn’t think like them…


Here are a few of the most recent voter comments:

  • “Great idea. But renaming is only part of the way to be technology more accessible.”
  • “Unimportant. I know RSS is the hot thing right now, but I’m discovering there really is nothing better than reading the New York Times or Wall Street Journal news paper. Internet media is so forced and newspaper reading is much more of a discovery.”
  • “I think it’s a good idea — it educates people about the technology, it reminds content creators that they can and do have an influence on development of terminology, and it’s fun! :-)”

e earlier voters had to say:

  • “Pretty cool. Bringing new technology to the public in a simple, smart way.”
  • “Great idea.”
  • “Will it be adopted by the RSS community at large?”
  • “The name should be feedrss – easy!”
  • “It’s interesting, it’s got people talking and thinking, it’s fun, and it’s helping to raise awareness of RSS. All good!”
  • “An interesting and creative diversion that engages the mind, despite the fact the the results may not (in reality) have any real influence – indicative of the mindset of the webset that prefers stimulation over emulation!”
  • “I think it’s correct to call it Nickname Contest rather than Rename RSS Contest.”
  • “It’s necessary to increase the popularity of the instrument.”
  • “Great Idea. No one in my organization has any idea what I am talking about when I say RSS–I am so tired of explaining it.”
  • “This is a fun idea, but what’s wrong with the name RSS? Three letter acronyms are the foundation of technology.”
  • “Was fun to enter . . . always good idea to take the geekiness out of technology with catchier names.”
  • “That it is all about getting publicity for you.”
  • “It rocks :-)”
  • “Cool idea, but it probably helps to be a masochist!”


Thanks to all who have voted so far, and to everyone who entered nicknames in this contest. Sorry I had to eliminate so many from public voting, but asking people to choose one favorite from the full list of 273 entires simply wasn’t practical.

One parting observation… There seems to be a “feed” theme happening near the top of the list of most popular choices. That’s understandable � but personally, I wonder whether the word “feed” might be a bit too cryptic for many people in a mass audience. Remember, the point of this contest is to come up with a nickname that would be understandable to your grandmother.

I can see the potential for confusion in a mass audience over the word “feed,” which is why my personal favorites are more focused on the user experience, such as “Skimit” or “Webstract.” To me, “feed” seems to focus more on the mechanics of delivery. However, that’s strictly my own opinion. I’m totally willing to admit that I may well be wrong about how “feed” may sound to a mass audience.

2 thoughts on RSS Feed Nickname Contest: Voting Has Closed

Comments are closed.

  1. Why do you think my (or your) grandmother wouldn’t understand names like NewsFeed or SiteFeed (when we’re all used to hearing about news feeds on TV), but would understand something as cryptic as Webstract? The ‘feed’ names at least harness the news feed analogy, which many people have some basic level of familiarity with.

  2. Amy Is Sadly Excoriated
    Alas, the blog go around. Apparently Amy is…. sniff….. sniff.. sad about our recent barking on her “Re-name RSS contest”. On her latest update (wow, “Elert” and “Newsfeed” have moved up on “Grapevine”) Amy sobs: Also, “Grapevine” was recently excor…