Email has always held a sacred place in our lives. It is both the first and last frontier in the rapidly developing world of interwebs - more formal than text messages (I should say, snapchats), and more personal than a Facebook wall post. Email is personal, and it is private; you are in control through the entire experience. Even with the advent of the 1x1 pixel for “opened email” tracking, you can still adjust your display settings to prevent the pixel from loading. I know many people, myself included, who even use email as a way to keep track of tasks yet to be done. Email is just the right level of direct-yet-polite, such that your long time friend and your new acquaintance both feel comfortable using it as their primary means of communication with you. And that’s the reason why marketing teams love email. If it pops into your inbox, an email is almost guaranteed to be read, or have its title skimmed at the least.

The question then: Why do you still have so much junk coming into your email inbox?

If you’re like me, you’ll have signed up for random blogs, newsletters, and articles - because hey, you want to keep up to date with that stuff! ..Sometimes! These email subscriptions have started to pile up however, to your weary click-clicking and tap-tapping every day to the trash...

Harken, the return of RSS! [Feed Reader for Chrome]! No longer will your email inbox be defiled by unimportant messages! Stay up to date directly from the source of new content (like the blog of yours truly) with the simple click of a button! And for those RSS feeds that don’t work with the click of a button (I’m looking at you Oatmeal), just copy and paste the RSS link with a ?format=xml at the end into the "Add feed" box. (Eg. http://feeds.feedburner.com/oatmealfeed?format=xml)

(My feed is a work in progress, no judgment.)

For the uninitiated, RSS stands for "Rich Site Summary" and is a web feed format that provides users with automatic new updates without the user having to manually check the source site. In our case, we can install an RSS reader as an extension to our Chrome browser which will then allow us to see new content when it is available, and link directly to the source site. The RSS feed reader exists as a small button in the upper right corner of our browser. Instructional steps below.

  1. Install the Chrome extension "RSS Feed Reader"
  2. Unsubscribe from the emails for your non-essential blogs, newsletters, articles, and so forth
  3. Navigate to those same blog, newsletter, and article sites and add them to your RSS feed by clicking on the "orange signal symbol" in the upper right corner of your browser and clicking the "+" sign
  4. Enjoy a cleaner email inbox and better management of your web syndicated content!

Your email inbox is your home on the internet. Make sure all your guests are really welcome.