My website has a favicon that shows up in my browser, but when I look at my feed it doesn’t seem to get picked up. How do I reuse it?
I came across this question on Twitter asked by WolfieB from The Wolf’s Howl. A favicon is a great way to add a touch of branding to your website which shows up when people look at your URL or even at their bookmarks. For example, here’s one I use on Cruelcard (which I haven’t updated in years!)
It’s a little icon that can be created quite easily and uploaded to your website and browsers will automatically pick it up. And it can make a difference to your site in the same way the best acne treatment in the world can help a teenager. But using it in your RSS feed is not as simple unfortunately. First of all, not all blog readers will actually acknowledge or use your feed icon, and then, to compound matters, RSS feeds and Atom feeds; the two methods for broadcasting RSS feeds, use different mechanisms.
The RSS specification doesn’t actually specify that you can include an icon for your field. However, it does allow you to add a feed image which some readers will parse correctly. You need to specify the image to use, as well as the dimensions of the image to make sure it’s displayed correctly. Here’s an example of one I’ve just added to Ugh!!’s Greymatter Honeypot:
<title>Owen Cutajar's blog</title>
Atom Feeds are slightly easier in that there are specific elements that can be used for the icon and logo of a feed. Here’s what they would looks like:
Tools you can use
One extra pointer I’d like to finish with. If you’re using FeedBurner for your feed, then you can add your feed by going to “Optimize Feed” and “Feed Image Burner”. Here’s a screenshot of what this looks like:
There you go, everything you ever wanted to know about logos/icons in your blog feed.