Managing Internet Content the Easy Way

Let’s stop for a minute and consider how many people we “follow” online. To keep it even more specific and focused, only think about those you follow who create content for piano teachers.

Can you count them all on one hand, or do you lose track after listing more than a dozen?

I stopped counting after 50. Yes, 50.  I’m pretty sure my number is actually closer to 90.

Let’s crank that jaw shut – it’s not as scary as it seems!

Next to email, managing the influx of content from all our favorite blogs and websites seems to be the one area teachers struggle with the most – and for good reason. The last five years especially have seen an explosion of new content creators – I’m one of them!

Believe it or not, it is possible to follow a large number of sites online in a manageable way without it feeling overwhelming. More importantly, you can do it without clogging your email Inbox or Facebook Newsfeed with articles. Curious?


Don’t Mix ‘n Match

The most important piece of advice I give teachers in regard to managing digital content is this: Don’t combine multiple things into one.

For example:

-What is the main function/purpose of email? Communication.
-What is the main function/purpose of Facebook? Connection.
-What is the main function/purpose of websites? Information/Inspiration.

Let email be for communication (not reading articles), and let Facebook be for connection time (not reading articles). When it’s time to read informative or inspiring articles from your favorite websites, don’t be distracted by notifications on your Facebook timeline or that next email that came in.

Otherwise, what happens? We have a 30-minute break between students, so we jump on email to make a dent in our inbox. The second email, though, is the latest article from your favorite website. The next thing you know, your student has arrived, and you made no progress on your inbox. The article you read, while quite informative, wasn’t necessarily information that benefited you at the moment.


Don’t Go

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying you shouldn’t subscribe to email lists or follow the Facebook page of your favorite sites. If you want to stay connected to certain people, then yes, you should subscribe and follow!

Luckily, these days, subscribing to a website isn’t just about getting posts delivered to your inbox but about keeping in touch and getting content that is often NOT available on the website (like my Secret Letter).

All in all, the goal is simply this: be where you are and don’t allow the online world to dictate when and what you read.

The best tool I can recommend for streamlining our content-absorption time, though is to use an RSS Reader.


What’s an RSS Reader?

R.S.S. stands for “Really Simple Syndication.”

It’s a single place to read all the news you rely on – essentially a customized digital newspaper. You add the websites you would like to follow, and when those sites post new articles, they will all come into one location.

Each evening (or at least a couple of nights a week), while watching my favorite evening show on the couch, I can quickly scroll through the day’s content in less than 20 minutes.

The RSS Reader I use is called Feedly. (Notice their play on the RSS symbol.)

In this brief video, you’ll get a glimpse into my personal Feedly account and see how quick and easy it is to scroll through new content!

Yes, it’s just that easy!

Feedly is one of the Top Tools and Resources I recommend. You can follow your favorite recipe sites, teaching sites, and news sites all in one location!

To check out more of my recommended resources, click here.


The Last Great Online Bargain

Ever heard of Seth Godin? He’s a famous marketing guru who writes a daily blog. He uses RSS. In this article, he states:

Other than writing a daily blog (a practice that’s free, and priceless), reading more blogs is one of the best ways to become smarter, more effective and more engaged in what’s going on. The last great online bargain.

Good blogs aren’t focused on the vapid race for clicks that other forms of social media encourage. Instead, they patiently inform and challenge, using your time with respect.

Here’s the thing: Google doesn’t want you to read blogs. They shut down their RSS reader and they’re dumping many blog subscriptions into the gmail promo folder, where they languish unread.

And Facebook doesn’t want you to read blogs either. They have cut back the organic sharing some blogs benefitted from so that those bloggers will pay to ‘boost’ their traffic to what it used to be.


RSS still works. It’s still free. It’s still unfiltered, uncensored and spam-free.

…You can easily keep up to date in less time than it takes you to watch a lousy TV show…


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Using a reader would be the best way to keep up with Piano Pantry too! 🙂

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    • Hi, Marilyn! No, it has nothing to do with email or Facebook. You sign up for an RSS Reader account. Feedly is a RSS Reader website. Just go to and sign up. You then add in the URL’s of websites you want to follow and it will connect the blog feed of all those sites into Feedly so you can flip through them all in one location. Let me know if you still have trouble.

  • I love the idea of not mixing function/purpose. That’s a great take away from this article. Question – did you try other RSS feeders or apps to manage digital content before Feedly, and if so, why did you choose Feedly? I’ve played around with Bloglovin’ but haven’t really committed to anything yet.

    • Hey, Lynnette! Actually, I didn’t try any others. When Google Reader closed years ago, I simply researched at the time what Reader was the best next to Google Reader and I landed on Feedly. I’ve been very happy with it! I think I’ve been using it for at least 8 years now…

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