Long time The MKX® readers know that I’m a huge fan of Google Reader. What can I say, I’m a news junkie. Some things have changed though:
- In 2011, Google redesigned (read: crippled) Google Reader in order to better shove Google+ down our throats. Among other things, they removed link sharing. I now use Delicious exclusively for that purpose. (Hint: You can subscribe to the RSS feed of my Delicious. I subscribe to a few friends this way)
- While I used to use the Google Reader website directly, I no longer do that. Now I use an app called Reeder (on my iPhone, iPad, and Mac) that synchronizes to my Google Reader account. So Google Reader is no longer an RSS client for me, just a synchronization service.
Yesterday, Google announced they are shutting the service down on July 1st. Is this a personal disaster? No, for the two reasons given above.
While I understand that companies cannot give something away for free without getting anything in return (hint: it costs money to provide these sort of services), I fully expected Google to start inserting “sponsored” items into our news feeds. After all, one would think knowledge about RSS subscriptions is an advertiser’s dream: they know what we subscribe to, which is another way of saying they know what we take an active interest in spending our time reading about because we are interested in it.
I fully expect a clone to emerge anytime soon and I expect to migrate my 242 subscriptions (that’s two hundred and forty two!) with me. Heck, now that others will be able to compete in this area, we may even get improved RSS services!