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Have You Abandoned Your RSS Reader?

I was going to ask this question on Facebook, but then decided I might be guilty of sample bias.

At one time I was a heavy user of Google Reader and had many, many RSS feeds. But I haven’t touched Google Reader or any other dedicated RSS reader for some time now. In my particular case I think it’s because I’m following people and organizations through Facebook and Twitter primarily. If a source I used to follow in my feeds isn’t on either Facebook or Twitter, I’ve been passing it by.

I don’t think this is necessarily better or worse, just different. Or maybe it’s a demonstration that attention is exhaustible.

Have your online reading habits changed? How so?

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7 Responses

  1. I still rely on the Google Reader + the Blogger platform’s reader for skimming around a hundred blogs. There is some overlap w/Facebook but not anywhere near enough, and it’s a different field of reference anyways.
    No Twitter, as at some point I have to break away and reclaim enough time, toys and technology for myself. So in that way it changed my online reading habits by restricting them and realizing there is a finite limit, as you said.

  2. I haven’t abandoned my RSS reader, it left me first. [shakes fist at Bloglines]

    RSS readers are necessary when you follow 37 different webcomics. Now I don’t have to check them individually and scan back to where I left off, Google Reader keeps track of it all for me.

  3. I reluctantly changed from Bloglines to Google Reader. Can’t imagine dropping a reader.

  4. I use Live Journal to manage my feeds.

  5. Thanks for all of your comments. It’s nice to have a reality check. It helps me avoid the “I’m doing “Y”, so everyone else must be doing “Y” error.

    Maeghan, I tried using Google Reader for Unshelved and I couldn’t get the whole strip to show. Did just enough scrolling to decided it wasn’t worth it for me. Maybe it’s my screen resolution. Now I get them through Gmail. Go figure.

    Jamie – I wouldn’t even be looking at Twitter either if it wasn’t for Tweetdeck.

    Pat. – That’s interesting. Haven’t heard of that being done before.

    Walt – If I were a full-time writer, I’m confident I’d still be on a reader as well.

    By the way, I’m not one of those RSS is dead people. I’m confident that Twitter, Facebook and other social services use RSS in the background.

    Thanks again for all the good comments.

  6. I do still use Google Reader for quite a bit. I find it less chaotic than social media–I can find out what’s hot, but not necessarily follow a single site’s ongoing work using social sources. I use GR to provide some backup archiving: I pull feeds from my own sites and others I work on, knowing I can backtrack to them there if my primary copies fail. And I find the search function invaluable for those niggling “I know I read something about that a couple weeks ago but it wasn’t really something I needed then as much as I do right now” to let me search my trusted sources instead of just pawing through pages of Google search result spam.

  7. Hi Savannah, It’s great to have you stop by. I missed seeing you at AkLA 2011 in Juneau.

    I think you and others bring up a number of good reasons. I had forgotten about being aqble to search through feeds.

    Maybe I’ll give GR another try after deciding the minimal number of feeds to restart.

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