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Feb 6 2005

Syndication and Button Rant

I just added at the bottom left of this page, syndication buttons for NewsGator and My MSN. Like the other syndications listed, NewsGator was easy to include. MSN, however, was a royal pain in the derriere like everything Bill Gates puts his hands on. First, the instructions for implementing a My MSN syndication link are wrong! MSN's set-up page included the following graphical code:


First, at the bottom left, there should not be a space between "rs" and "s&ru." Second, the instructions say to replace "destinationlink.com" with the web address of your RSS feed. It should say to replace "destinationlink.com/rss" instead. Only after much trial and error did I figure this out. I wonder how many hundreds, maybe thousands, of people have incorrect and worthless code on their pages thanks to the incompetent people at Microsoft?

One of my biggest pet peeves is that so many companies think they are too special to have a button that conforms to the standard 80x15 pixel size.

NewsGator thinks they should have a 91x17 image, but I made it the standard 80x15 as shown on the right:

NewsGator NewsGator

While My MSN thinks they should have a 71x14 image, but I disagree. I also didn't like the plus symbol on the right which they only did to be different from Yahoo and NewsGator. I switched it to the left as I like conformity:


Kinja believes their button should be 88x24, I refuse to go along:

Kinja Kinja

Yahoo! really takes the cake. They aren't too sure what their syndication button should look like or what size it should be, but they are certain it should not be the standard 80x15. Sorry, Yahoo!, not on my site. Yahoo!'s four buttons followed by my standardized button:

My Yahoo! My Yahoo!

My Yahoo! My Yahoo!

My Yahoo!

Finally, some sites don't have anything resembling a standardized button. Here are ones I created for my host TotalChoice Hosting and for The Weblog Review:

TotalChoice Hosting The Weblog Review

Other buttons I've just made small tweaks to, such as Technorati's button which they didn't have matching their color scheme. I just couldn't sleep at night knowing I had non-standard buttons on my site...is that wrong? If anyone wants to use any of the buttons I've worked on, feel free, just be sure to host them yourselves.

Posted by Don |


  1. #1
    Dan said on February 7, 2005 | Reply

    And MSN's code isn't even XHTML compliant! How hard is it to put a slash before the end of your <img> tag?

    Well, let's see <img src="something.jpg" alt="You should always have an alt tag" />

    Well, not hard at all, it seems

    MS is teh suck.

  2. #2
    Me said on February 8, 2005 | Reply

    I know what you mean... As someone whose been out to Steal These Buttons at http://gtmcknight.com/buttons/ (and submitted some there besides, I know what you mean about the value of standardized 80x15 buttons, and how easy it is to make them (and make them look good)...

    Why is it that company's that keep saying they want to standardize the web and make it people friendly can't follow standards they didn't create?

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But ours is bigger! from dustbury.com

Is it too difficult to come up with a standard 80 x 15 button? For some organizations, yes, says Don Danz, it is too difficult. What's more, says Don, "I... Read More