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Alerts: How to Receive Alerts

Tips

Wherever you see an RSS icons  or  or  or even the word RSS, it should be possible to create an RSS link.

It is easy to add or remove an RSS link (or feed) in an RSS reader.

RSS readers allow one to rename the name of the RSS link. Some publishers create long names that start with themself.

RSS or email delivery ? RSS is best!

RSS

Alerts, particlularly Table of Contents (TOC) alerts, are the killer application for academic researchers that makes RSS must have technology. If you don't anything about RSS, do not let that put you off -- it should take less than an hour to put it into practice. An RSS reader allows you to view, add, delete, rename (when needed), and organize RSS feeds for TOC alerts, search alerts, and citation alerts. An RSS reader can be the one place you need go to keep up with the literature. 

  1. Choose an RSS reader. There are many RSS readers available. Feedly is a good choice -- it is free and easy to use and is my recommendation. My Yahoo! is another web-based RSS reader. Internet browsers can be used as an RSS reader, but they are less effective at managing them. Dedicated RSS feed software, such as FeedDemon, can be downloaded for free.
  2. Add RSS feeds. One of the easiest ways to add RSS feeds is to cut and paste an RSS feed link into a RSS reader. Anytime the word RSS or the RSS icons   or  or  are shown, it should be possible to create a link for RSS feed that can be copied and pasted into an RSS reader.
  3. Periodically visit your RSS reader to check for new Table of Contents and search results.

Advice on RSS feeds

There are several ways to get RSS feed into an RSS reader. Probably the most straightforward way is to find or create an "RSS link" for the search or the table of contents. Simply paste the link into your RSS reader.

Wherever you see an RSS icon, or the words "RSS feed", it should be possible to create an RSS link.

It is a rare journal publisher that does not provide an RSS feed link to each of its journals.

See the Search Alerts tab for suggestions on how to create Search Alerts in PubMed, SciFinder, and Ebsco, Ovid, and CSA databases.

It is easy to remove an RSS feed from an RSS reader. It is much easier to remove an RSS feed than it is to unsubscribe to an automated email alert which alert is likely to require password access to the account in which the email alert was created.

RSS readers allow one to rename the name of the RSS link. Some publishers create long names that start with their global name and end with the more useful name of the journal or the name you gave the search.

E-mail

Email is another way to receive alerts. Alerts are sent on a regular schedule --- usually weeklyl. The entire content of the alert may be contained in the email or it may simply provide a link to the content. the major drawback is that every new journal issue or search alert update means another email. Keeping track of alerts by email can be awkward. The main advantage of email delivery is that search alerts in a few databases are a little easier to set up than an RSS feed.