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XML::RSS::Headline - Persistant XML RSS Encapsulation




Headline object to encapsulate the headline/URL combination of a RSS feed. It provides a unique id either by way of the URL or by doing an MD5 checksum on the headline (when URL uniqueness fails).


XML::RSS::Headline->new( headline => $headline, url => $url )

XML::RSS::Headline->new( item => $item )

A XML::RSS::Headline object can be initialized either with headline/url or with a parse XML::RSS item structure. The argument 'headline_as_id' is optional and takes a boolean as its value.



The id is our unique identifier for a headline/url combination. Its how we can keep track of which headlines we have seen before and which ones are new. The id is either the guid from rss, the URL or a MD5 checksum generated from the headline text (if $headline->headline_as_id is true);


The unique id used by RSS, set if its available. The 'id' method return guid or url if guid is not available.


This method returns the headline as either an array or array reference based on context. It splits headline on newline characters into the array.

$headline->item( $item )

Init the object for a parsed RSS item returned by XML::RSS.


$headline->set_first_seen( Time::HiRes::time() )

Set the time of when the headline was first seen. If you pass in a value it will be used otherwise calls Time::HiRes::time().


The time (in epoch seconds) of when the headline was first seen.


The time (in epoch seconds and milliseconds) of when the headline was first seen.



$headline->headline( $headline )

The rss headline/title. HTML::Entities::decode_entities is used when the headline is set. (not sure why XML::RSS doesn't do this)


$headline->url( $url )

The rss link/url. URI->canonical is called to attempt to normalize the URL


$headline->description( $description )

The description of the RSS headline.


$headline->headline_as_id( $bool )

A bool value that determines whether the URL will be the unique identifier or the if an MD5 checksum of the RSS title will be used instead. (when the URL doesn't provide absolute uniqueness or changes within the RSS feed)

This is used in extreme cases when URLs aren't always unique to new healines (Use Perl Journals) and when URLs change within a RSS feed ( / /,


$headline->timestamp( Time::HiRes::time() )

A high resolution timestamp that is set using Time::HiRes::time() when the object is created.


Jeff Bisbee, <jbisbee at>


Please report any bugs or feature requests to bug-xml-rss-feed at, or through the web interface at I will be notified, and then you'll automatically be notified of progress on your bug as I make changes.


You can find documentation for this module with the perldoc command.

    perldoc XML::RSS::Headline

You can also look for information at:


Special thanks to Rocco Caputo, Martijn van Beers, Sean Burke, Prakash Kailasa and Randal Schwartz for their help, guidance, patience, and bug reports. Guys thanks for actually taking time to use the code and give good, honest feedback.

Thanks to Aaron Krowne for patch to use guid as the unique id instead of url if its available.


Copyright 2006 Jeff Bisbee, all rights reserved.

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself.


XML::RSS::Feed, XML::RSS::Headline::PerlJobs, XML::RSS::Headline::Fark, XML::RSS::Headline::UsePerlJournals, POE::Component::RSSAggregator