Michael Sampson pointed me to Steve Gillmor's RSS feed on eWeek (which, ironically given their excitement about RSS being the new black, I don't subscribe to)...
What's that, in the middle of the feed, that entry with the "ADV:" in front of it?
Image:RSS advertising from a surprising source
Yes, that would be advertising in an RSS feed.  As was discussed when I first commented on this RSS vs. e-mail battle, it was inevitable that RSS would start to become a source of mixed content (some would call it spam, other would call it revenue generation for publishers).  Now, most RSS readers make it easy to bypass this kind of advertisement, especially since eWeek was professional enough to clearly identify it as an advertisement.  But is this just a drip in the feed, or is it the dam breaking and a sign of how publishers view RSS?  Should the RSS feed itself be viewed as a way to generate revenue, or the content on the pages that the RSS entry leads to?  Because if the signal to noise ratio drops, RSS is going to be a whole lot less interesting.  It's not like the typical RSS reader has "rules" to filter content...the assumption is that the feed itself is the lowest order breakdown of filtering.  Maybe that needs to change.
The reason I titled this a "surprising source" is that eWeek's Gillmor has been one of the strongest proponents of RSS being a game-changer (there are, for example, two RSS -related articles in the current feed).  Now "his" feed just looks like my inbox, with a mix of content and spam.  Not sure that it can continue to be viewed as a revolution, if it actually starts to resemble the way we communicate already....
9:28 PM EDT -- Richard Schwartz saw the advertisement in the eWeek feed, too.

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