How I know who's talking about me

I’ve been meaning to write about this for a while but Scott Adam’s post about using Google Alerts to find people talking about Dilbert prompted me to put fingers to keys this afternoon.

When someone anywhere in the world mentions my name in a blog post or even a comment, on Flickr, on Zooomr or anywhere with an RSS feed I know about it within a few hours. Occasionally it might take longer, maybe a day or so, or even a few months sometimes, but that would be unusual.

How? I use a “news aggregator” called Bloglines to track my favourite websites. Bloglines also has a search engine to search through their database. Nothing extraordinary there, but the magic happens when you subscribe to that search. “Subscribing” is just like subscribing to a magazine. You’re sent updated news and information as it happens at the source. When you subscribe to a blog, every time that blog is updated their new post appears in your aggregator. No need to fret about missing the latest news any more.

Instead of having to reload a search page every few hours Bloglines does that job for me automatically. The Bloglines feed list reloads periodically. A quick glance at it’s page in my browser window shows me if someone mentions me. It’s less stressful than checking my email all the time and news is delivered into my browser where I want it.

To be sure I search as much of the Internet as possible I do the same search on Technorati too.

I wonder will Scott find this post or comment on it? Probably not but hopefully someone else will find this useful.

Too Frickin’ Cool