RSS Feeds

The Anatomy of a Localist RSS Feed

<rss>The opening tag must note the version attribute.

<channel>The channel tag is required in all RSS Feeds.

<title>This tag serves as a title for the Feed.</title>

<description>This tag will just be a brief description of events in the Feed.</description>

<item>This tag is required at the beginning of each event.

<title>This tag is simply the title of your event.</title>

<guid>The purpose of these tags is to note the External ID.</guid>

  • An External ID tells our system that content in the <guid> tag is event #1, so each time the Feed imports it will match the previously imported event #1. If your events do not have an External ID, Localist will see each event as “new” during every import.
  • The External ID can be anything, like a numerical string or a URL. If you are trying to link to an external website, you’ll have to use the <link> tag. Localist will recognize this as the External ID if <guid> is not present in the Feed.

<pubDate>This is where you’ll note the date and start time of your event.</pubDate>

  • Date/time MUST be in this format: Tue, 05 Nov 2019 03:30:00 GMT
  • Time MUST be in 24hr format
  • You MUST convert your time zone to GMT or UTC (these are interchangeable)
    • U.S. Standard Time & (GMT offset):
      • Eastern Standard Time (GMT -5)
      • Central Standard Time (GMT -6)
      • Mountain Standard Time (GMT -7)
      • Pacific Standard Time (GMT -8)
      • Alaska Standard Time (GMT -9)
      • Hawaii-Aleutian Standard Time (GMT -10)
    • U.S. Daylight Time & (GMT offset):
      • Eastern Daylight Time (GMT -4)
      • Central Daylight Time (GMT -5)
      • Mountain Daylight Time (GMT -6)
      • Pacific Daylight Time (GMT -7)
      • Alaska Daylight Time (GMT -8)
    • Exceptions: Arizona and Hawaii do NOT honor Daylight Savings Time, so they will always be in Standard time.
  • If the event’s date/time has advanced to the next day in GMT/UTC, this must be reflected in the Feed for it to display properly in Localist.
    • For example, say an event in your Feed is on Nov 4th at 7:30 pm PST. When you advance the time forward 8 hours, that exact moment in GMT would be Nov 5th at 3:30 am. So, you would have to write that as <pubDate>Tue, 05 Nov 2019 03:30:00 GMT</pubDate> in the Feed for Localist to convert it to Nov 4th at 7:30 pm PST.

<description>This where you’ll include the description for your event.</description>

</item>This tag is required at the end of each event.

</channel>This tag is required at the end of the Feed.

</rss>This tag is required at the end of the Feed.



At this time, our parser does not accept images. If you add a Feed with the <image> tag, our parser will import events as if that tag is not present.


Building a Custom RSS Feed

If you’d like to build your own RSS Feed you can do so with Localist’s Custom Widget Templates. Here’s how:

  • Navigate to Content > Widgets
  • Click + Add Template

    name the Template something like “Custom RSS” > uncheck Active > Save Changes

    HEADS UP: It does not matter what template you are copying

  • Then replace the code in the Template with the following RSS code > Save Changes

    (the code includes a handful of Localist attributes, so from here you can remove, rearrange, and relabel as needed)

    <?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8" ?>
    {% for event in events %}
    <name>{% unless event.status == 'live' %}{{ site.snippets.event_status[event.status] }}: {% endunless %}{{ event.name }}</name>
    <url>{{event.url | escape }}</url>
    <start-date-time>{{event.starts_at | date: "%Y-%m-%dT%H:%M:%SZ"}}</start-date-time>
    <end-date-time>{{event.ends_at | date: "%Y-%m-%dT%H:%M:%SZ"}}</end-date-time>
    <description>{{ event.description_text | unescape | escape }}</description>
    <location>{{ event.place.visible_name }}{% if event.room_number %} {{ event.room_number }}{% endif %}</location>
    <image>{{ event.photo.big_square | escape }}</image>
    {% endfor %}

  • In the template editor, select Edit

    then check off Active (so it will be made available in your Widget Builder)

  • In the Widget Builder, select Custom RSS as the Template option

    then specify any additional Classifications or settings

  • Select Preview Widget at the bottom of the builder

    Adjust the preview URL with any additional parameters, like “start”

  • Use the final preview URL as the feed URL

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