I got email late yesterday from David Berlind: “Hey, can I call you for a minute?” He wanted commentary on a story he was writing that I think is about the potential for intellectual-property lock-ins on RSS and Atom extensions. I say “I think is about” because the headline is “Will or could RSS get forked?”. After a few minutes’ chat, David asked if he could record for a podcast, and even though I only had a cellphone, the audio came out OK. The conversation was rhythmic: David brought up a succession of potential issues and answered each along the lines of “Yes, it’s reasonable to worry about that, but in this case I don’t see any particular problems.” Plus I emitted a mercifully-brief rant on the difference between protocols, data, and software. On the one hand, I thought David could have been a little clearer that I was pushing back against the thrust of his story, but on the other hand he included the whole conversation right there in the piece, so anyone who actually cares can listen and find out what I actually said, not what I think I said nor what David reported I said. I find this raw barely-intermediated journalism (we talk on the phone this afternoon, it’s on the Web in hours) a little shocking still. On balance, it’s better than the way we used to do things.