Part of my jobdescription at the MoMB is to keep an eye on webapps which are not public yet. Some are pretty much in stealth mode, some are in closed alpha or beta, but most of them encourage you to leave your email address for being notified if they go public. None of them offers a RSS or Atom feed for this notification though, and I really wonder why.

What could be more convenient to the interested user than to subscribe to a quick and dirty feed which is dedicated for the announcement of the launch of the product, put it in a folder cool stuff to check out, and then forget about it until the good news arrives?

I don’t think anyone likes to spread his email address around, and I bet many of us use dedicated dummy addresses for these kind of scenarios, so the chances are pretty good that the notification email actually never will be seen by the recipient (killed by some ambitious spam filter, waiting in an abandoned email address,…)

A few examples, the list goes on and on:

DigitalBicycle (Sign up to receive an update when the site launches, and for possible inclusion as a beta tester. We’re good, honest folks, and we promise not to spam you or sell your address to the highest bidder.)

Blogbeat (Enter your email address below and we will notify you as soon as the service is publically available. And without sending you any spam.)

flagr (Enter your email and become the first to flag your spots.)

Buzzage (Register to participate in our upcoming Beta.)

Socius (Fill in your email address below to receive information about the development of Socius and to find out when it becomes publicly available. We promise not to spam you. And if you’re lucky, you might receive an invitation to the private beta.)

Republic of Blog (get invited to our Web 2.0 beta. if you’re cool enough.)

Free Time Zone Beta (Please enter your contact info if you would like to be notified of anything we might come up with.)


Plum (Come back in a few weeks or leave us your email address and we will notify you when we launch.)

Sprout (Enter your address below and we’ll let you know when Mailroom is available. Be among the first to know when our new Ruby on Rails product is launched.)

CourseCafe (Sign up below and we will notify you when we launch.)

MyTella (Private Beta Sign Up)

agnda (Mailing List Sign-up)

dabble DB (Feel free to sign up for our mailing list below. We’ll send you a note as soon as it’s ready for you to try out.)

3bases (enter your email address and click ‘submit’)

Ma.gnolia (If you’d like to be one of the first to see exactly what we mean, just enter your email below. You’ll be notified of our launch and become one of the first members of the Ma.gnolia community)

Cha-Ching! (Enter your email address below and we’ll keep you posted.)

Sphere (your email address)

edgio (.. please give us your email address ..)

sixtyspots (Put your e-mail in the box and we’ll make sure you’re in on the fun…)


In the case of Buzzage, I really wanted a mobile number since our service is geared toward mobile users. I thought people would be even less likely to share a number (this is actually one of the things Buzzage has a solution for). So I went with e-mail addresses. So why not offer an RSS feed instead of asking for an e-mail address? Well if it was just an RSS feed, it’s not as obvious to me how many interested beta users I have, what day they became interested, who they might be, and what might have prompted them to our site in the first place. So the basic answer is we can do our jobs better this way..
posted by Michael Cerda : 11/27/2005 09:07:43 PM

Just thought I’d point out that even though Republic of Blog is actually a joke placeholder page for an eventual project, there is a link to the RSS feed if you put your email address in.
posted by Anonymous : 12/05/2005 02:12:36 AM