Slick Tips: Efficiently import older posts

Administration, News 17 Comments
By Dave Munger

Do you have a backlog of posts that you’d like to add to the ResearchBlogging.org database? You can always use the “Import Post” function, but that requires you to manually enter quite a bit of data. There is an easier way, based on the tip we published last week.

Our system needs to see your post in an RSS (or Atom) feed in order to process it. But most feeds only list 10 or 20 posts — the posts you want to import might have been hundreds of posts back.

The easiest way to expand the number of posts available for our site to see is to change your blog’s settings. In WordPress, you can increase the number of posts in your syndication feed by using the Settings –> Reading –> Syndication Feeds Show the Most Recent ____ Posts feature. But other blogging systems don’t offer this option, so you may need to use a different method, which is explained below.

Creating a custom feed for ResearchBlogging.org

  1. Create a category or label to use just for your ResearchBlogging.org posts (It can be anything you want, like “Research” or “Research Blogging”)
  2. Apply that category to all the posts you want to include on our site
  3. Create citations for the posts (if you haven’t done so already–instructions here)
  4. Create a custom RSS feed for the category you created (detailed instructions below).
  5. Login to ResearchBlogging.org and click on your blog’s name under “MY BLOGS,” then click on “Edit Blog settings” (near the top of the page).
  6. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on “Edit Source” under Source Sites.
  7. Change the RSS URL to the custom RSS feed URL you just created and click “Save Changes”.
  8. Click on “Rescan Blog” about seven lines down on your Manage Blog page.
  9. Our system will scan just the category you created and should collect all your old posts!
  10. If you’d like, you can now change your RSS URL back to the main URL for your blog.

How to create a custom RSS feed

Different blogging platforms handle custom RSS feeds in different ways.

Wordpress
The standard method works for most Wordpress blogs:

  1. Click on the category you want to create a feed for and note the URL. For example, the blog Neuronarrative has an “About Research” category:
    http://neuronarrative.wordpress.com/category/about-research/
  2. Add the word “feed” to the end of the URL.
  3. That’s it!

But if your blog uses numbers for category URLs instead of nice names like on Neuronarrative, it’s a little more complicated.

  1. Click on the category you want to create a feed for and note the URL. For example, my blog Word Munger has a “psychology” category:
    http://wordmunger.com/?cat=5
  2. Add the text “feed=rss2&” between the question mark (?) and the text “cat”:
    http://wordmunger.com/?feed=rss2&cat=5
  3. That’s it!

Blogger
In Blogger, categories are called “Labels.” Here’s how to create a feed for a single label.

  1. Click on the label you want to create a feed for and note the URL. For example, the blog Experientia Docet has an “Extinciones” label:
    http://cesartomelopez.blogspot.com/search/label/Extinciones
  2. Replace the text “/search/label/” with “/feeds/posts/default/-/”:
    http://cesartomelopez.blogspot.com/feeds/posts/default/-/Extinciones
  3. That’s it!

If you use a different blogging platform and need help generating a custom RSS feed, put a note in the comments or email us at admin@researchblogging.org and we’ll do our best to help you through the process.

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