RSS 0.92 Specification
Archivist's Note: This is the RSS 0.92 specification published by UserLand Software on December 25, 2000. The current version of the RSS 2.0 specification is available at this link and other revisions have been archived.
RSS is a Web content syndication format.
RSS 0.92 is upward-compatible with RSS 0.91.
Every new feature of 0.92 is optional, meaning that a 0.91 file is also a valid 0.92 file.
Here is a RSS 0.92 file that illustrates many of the features described on this page.
In 0.91, the <language> element is required. In 0.92 it is optional.
Why? If a channel is formed from various input sources there's no way to know that it's going to only contain a single language.
In 0.91, <link> and <title> are required sub-elements of <item> and <description> is optional.
In 0.92, all sub-elements of <item> are optional.
Why? When a RSS file reflects the content of a weblog or "blog" site, the structure required by previous versions of RSS was often impossible to synthesize. For example, there is no actual limit on the number of links a weblog item can have.
Further, 0.92 allows entity-encoded HTML in the <description> of an item, to reflect actual practice by bloggers, who are often proficient HTML coders.
<source> is a new optional sub-element of <item>.
Its value is the name of the RSS channel that the item came from, derived from its <title>. It has one required attribute, url, which links to the XMLization of the source.
The purpose of this element is to propogate credit for links, to publicize the sources of news items.
<enclosure> is a new optional sub-element of <item>.
It has three required attributes. url says where the enclosure is located, length says how big it is in bytes, and type says what its type is, a standard MIME type.
The url must be an http url.
<enclosure url="http://www.scripting.com/mp3s/weatherReportSuite.mp3" length="12216320" type="audio/mpeg" />
A use-case narrative for this element is here
<category> is a new optional sub-element of <item>.
It has one optional attribute, domain, a string that identifies a categorization taxonomy.
The value of the element is a forward-slash-separated string that identifies a hierarchic location in the indicated taxonomy. Processors may establish conventions for the interpretation of categories. Two examples are provided below:
<cloud> is a new optional sub-element of <channel>. It specifies a Web service that supports the rssCloud interface which can be implemented in HTTP-POST, XML-RPC or SOAP 1.1.
Its purpose is to allow processes to register with a cloud to be notified of updates to the channel.
<cloud domain="data.ourfavoritesongs.com" port="80" path="/RPC2" registerProcedure="ourFavoriteSongs.rssPleaseNotify" protocol="xml-rpc"/>
A full explanation of this element and the rssCloud interface is here.
In RSS 0.91 various elements are restricted to 500 or 100 characters. There can be no more than 15 <items> in a 0.91 <channel>.
There are no string-length or XML-level limits in RSS 0.92.
Processors may impose their own limits, and generators may have preferences that say no more than a certain number of <item>s can appear in a channel, or that strings are limited in length.
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