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Google Reader shutting down (googleblog.blogspot.com)
1964 points by knurdle 1441 days ago | hide | past | web | 695 comments | favorite

This has been a long time coming. Four years ago I began work on my own feed reader, NewsBlur, and it's now a full-fledged Google Reader competitor. It's also a paid app and has been paying for itself nearly since the beginning.


I hope HN finds NewsBlur useful, especially since it's got native mobile apps on iOS (iPhone+iPad), Android, Windows Phone, and Nokia MeeGo. Native story sharing was launched last Summer and I expect NewsBlur to be around for quite a while.

It's also fully open-source, in case you decide to build your own private community: http://github.com/samuelclay.

I also have a full-scale re-design in the works, but if you can't get to the main site you can try using the beta site: http://dev.newsblur.com

It is often asked of startup founders 'what if Google starts doing what you do?', a valid question. Perhaps it is worth contemplating products too small for Google to concern themselves with, ones they might abandon, that would still be an attractive opportunity for the rest of us.

I've been rooting for you and recall enjoying the blog posts about its making - I've always figured that "RSS is dead" and there is no longer money in clients (people used to pay for desktop readers!)..

Except that Google would kill Reader eventually and somebody will soak that userbase of nerds right up. And NewsBlur is clearly the top choice and will hopefully occupy similar mindshare as Reader did for us until now. Congrats, well played. :)

I wonder what the next one along these lines will be as now would be a great time to start building it.

Its not as lucrative as you would think. When Google Code Search shut down I launched code search http://searchco.de and while it got some attention it was nowhere near as much as you would expect.

That said I do think that going after markets abandoned by the big guys is an excellent way to go. Usually they abandon it because its not a billion dollar business and isn't worth their time.

I believe now that you need to start attacking their market-share before they close the product down and use the closure as a marketing opportunity.

Hmm. I personally have needed to use Google Code Search several times since it shut down, but have never found your site. When I've looked for alternatives by searching Google (say, for "code search"), I've found Koders (now Ohloh code search), but not yours. It seems like you might need to do a bit more SEO.

Yes I certainly do. I have been working on it, but Koders and Ohloh are pretty established so its a long climb. I think the .de domain might be hurting a little bit too. Happy to listen to any actionable items that can address this though.

Check out the periodic table of SEO: http://searchengineland.com/seotable

Kalzmeus on SEO (click around his blog for more, guy's a genius): http://www.kalzumeus.com/2010/01/24/startup-seo/

Also some quick, simple advice:

1. Blog 2/3 times per week minimum. Target a single, relevant keyword per blog post (relevant to your domain). The post title, H1s, H2s etc, image tags should all contain your primary keyword. Blog posts don't have to be long, but they do have to be useful.

2. Build a G+, FB, Twitter account for your site if you haven't already. Blast out your new posts to these accounts using Hootsuite (free, but you can pay if you like).

3. Build an audience on the social networks - just search around, follow relevant people and share useful, educational material. Don't spam.

4. Personalised mass email from Google Docs and Gmail (kind of hesitant to recommend this in light of Google shuttering services!): http://www.labnol.org/internet/personalized-mail-merge-in-gm... you need to have "newsletter" signs ups (blast out a digest of your blog posts once per month), calls to actions etc on your site for this to work properly (i.e. optimise your site to capture names & emails). Great, low cost/free way to make sure your audience stays engaged and coming back to your site. You can pay for this kind of service too, e.g. Mailchimp (they've a free tier), Constant Contact, or the likes of Hubspot for full suite of marketing automation tools.

5. Best of Startup marketing/SEO here, that I've compiled over the years (absolute gold): https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0Ag_fyIIMSJ6DdGt...

6. Check out Sell More Software by patio11: http://www.hyperink.com/Sell-More-Software-Website-Conversio...

Many engineers don't fully appreciate marketing as patio11 would be quick to point out, but there's a start.

Being successful at SEO is almost the same as starting your own company. Any one of these is a full-time proposition.

I would seek out professional SEO company's and try to find the best deal. No way anybody could do all this stuff by themselves. In the end, it will be a worthwhile investment. From my own experience it's very time consuming to get it right.

Agreed. I do most of the above as an employee in a startup company, and we use Hubspot to have most of our marketing efforts "under one roof".

However if you're a bootstrapped company, you may not have a choice but to put the time in yourself rather than paying for professional SEO services.

If you have a technical and non-technical co-founders, this list is a large chunk of what the non-technical guy should/will be doing.

Building a great product that people want is pointless without letting people know about it.

@patrickk I've been looking for a basics post about SEo without tech speak for ahem years. That doc is brilliant. Thank you! I might be able to start implementing now instead of having SEO on my to-do list yet again.

Glad you found it helpful!

This is excellent, thanks so much!

Not a huge thing, but your HTML isn't valid - for example, there's Google analytics stuff after the closing </html> tag.

That kind of thing is never going to help


I didn't know that had any bearing on it but thinking about it seems like it would be a ranking factor. I'll fix that up soon and see if anything changes. Cheers.

That doesn't make any difference at all to SEO (and in some cases can improve performance - or at least having it after the body tag does).

Grepcode also turns up frequently in results.

I think that the base of Google Code Search users that would be willing to pay for a replacement is probably dwarfed by the amount of users willing to pay for a Google Reader replacement.

I never found Google Code Search useful. What I wanted to be able to do was to search for code expressions with Google -- to be able, for instance, to search for the words "C++" or "call-next-method", exactly as I type them, punctuation and casing and all. No synonyms, no "corrections", no singular/plural conversions, no punctuation-stripping. Google never provided a way to search for exactly what I asked it to search for. Still the main thing missing from google search.

Google's Verbatim tool doesn't do the job?


I wrote up a quick reponse to that one (many googlers ask for data when confronted with how their main product is declining) and here it is: techinorg.blogspot.com/2013/03/what-is-going-on-with-search-results.html

Not pretty but have some real examples. Please post your own and paste a link here or in the comments.

Copied from comment on blog:


Anonymous14 March, 2013 19:55

Obviously a comparison of search results is difficult due to the various signals used to alter search results, but as of 3/14/2013 I get what appear to be 'reasonable' results for both of your example searches:

"sublime text 2" "focus group" : http://i.imgur.com/4LpuUYq.png

cisco "anyclient" : http://i.imgur.com/kptK8HO.png

Again, doesn't necessarily detract from your issue, but just giving search terms isn't reproducible!


I can now verify that Cisco "Anyclient" is not silently rewritten anymore. Will have to wait and see if they weeded out this particular snag, if they adjusted their fuzzing towards sane or if they just gave me a better bubble (I'd like that I think.).

Verbatim doesn't even fully disable word corrections. There is no way at all to search for punctuation characters. Try it yourself, type in ((((())))) or something and look at all zero results.

Their implementation was lacking, but the concept was sound. Someone could get this right, particularly if it was marketed as a learning tool.

Weird. I find they get literal code searches correct very very frequently.

Code search allowed regular expression searches.

I developed http://imnosy.com to notify you when bookmarks/pages you add are updated. Google Reader used to provide this kind of functionality, so I thought I would mention it here myself.

I use page2rss.com for this.

Good find patrikr: http://imnosy.com is a little different then that service. More of a bookmarking engine.

Code search never made sense I think. You could argue stackoverflow / github were the replacements.

I strongly disagree with this. Much of the world's code is not on GitHub or StackOverflow. This is a much underserved market in my opinion.

Well Nuuton will have that feature. Not at the alpha stage, but it will roll out.

" now would be a great time to start building it."

Now is too late. The right time to have started building it was 2-6 months ago. Now is the time to market an existing solution.

Citing the great gretzky quote, the "puck" is already here.

You missed the beginning of the sentence: "the next one" = "it", not Google reader

The way I see it you have until their next spring cleaning to figure out what they'll axe and make/market it. A couple of months is neither here nor there.

I mean-- err, yes, totally too late! Don't worry about it.

We've been working on something at Skim.Me (http://skim.me) for almost two years now as a replacement for Reader and/or iGoogle. We're still figuring it out but would love anyone looking for a replacement to signup for the next release.

Check out Frontpage, its an RSS reader that lets you browse all your feeds right from your lock screen. No inputting passwords or fumbling through multiple apps.

We've been working on it for the past few months.


Damn it! I was working on a replacement which will concentrate on the "catching up" part. Guess I missed a golden opportunity for publicity. Ah well.

Definitely interesting the trend that Google is following, first with iGoogle and now Reader.

With backstitch (http://backstit.ch) we get questioned a lot why Google is no longer supporting these types of services (and if this means there is no opportunity there since they aren't worried about it anymore). We honestly feel like there is a lot of surface left uncovered when it comes to personalized/streamlined content and it just doesn't seem to be part of Google's refocusing (this has been seen with the shutting down of a lot of their lab projects as well).

Tried it out, not really feeling it. Not loading Instapaper and Google Reader articles. I can't find the option to delete my account, which is pretty annoying. How do I delete my account again? Thanks.

Sorry to hear about that. If you get a chance please shoot an email to team@backstit.ch and we can take a look at fixing the issues you are experiencing or help you with your account further.

Similarly, who are customers that are neglected by the big players?

In my industry merchant accounts are very difficult to come by. We are considered high risk. Even with a year of processing records showing 1 chargeback out of >3k transactions I can't get access to a merchant with decent rates(currently paying 3.7%). All the big players turn us away. There's gold to be mined off the beaten path.

Which industry is this?

I've been trying to remember what NewsBlur was called for the past 25 minutes. Thanks for posting this!

That said, I lament the lack of a desktop app. I've been using Reeder for OS X, and I'd really like to have some sort of desktop app instead of relying on my iPhone or a website. Have you considered talking to existing app makers (e.g. Reeder) to see if they might want to switch over to using your service as their backend?

What conesus is doing is very cool. But I'm still using NetNewsWire on OS X because it's a desktop RSS reader and it's good enough.

Conesus: Have you considered running a Kickstarter for a desktop version of NewsBlur, in order to gauge interest? I'd definitely contribute.

NetNewsWire on OS X is nice, but I really need a) syncing between 3 different computers, and b) an iPhone client (and ideally an iPad client too, but not strictly required). Reeder + Google Reader has satisfied this until now.

I've been happy with FeedDemon Lite on the Windows desktop for ages. Sad to see I'm losing my sync with Google Reader, but at it'll still serve it's purpose.

Good news for you then!

I used to use GR every day, then on a whim I switched the free newsblur version. To be perfectly honest, it doesn't offer me a lot more than GR did, but after hitting the 60 feed limit a couple of times I've now gone paid and I'm happy to support a service that does exactly what I want it to do. It would have been nice if it imported by saved(or linked or started or whatever they were called in the end) stories from GR though.

One peeve though, I have no idea how to manage my feeds. Is there any easy way to move them round through drag-and-drop? It appears I have to move them manually one by one, but I have a lot of feeds and I'd rather not do that!

We've also been working on a Google Reader replacement for the last two years: http://intigi.com. With Intigi, you can import your RSS feeds from Reader (via OPML) and then filter the feeds by your preferred keywords and social signals (e.g., shares via Twitter).

Intigi is a paid service, primarily targeted at marketers, but we do have a number of startups and founders using the product for content discovery and sharing. You can quickly share content you find to social media, a WordPress site, or to an RSS feed (e.g., to connect with IFTTT).

I'm one of the cofounders and happy to answer any questions about the service and would love any feedback, if you decide to give it a test spin. Please email me at mjfern(at)intigi.com.

Hey - thought you might be interested in knowing there are lots of people at a total loss over on Reddit: http://www.reddit.com/r/technology/comments/1a8ygk/official_...

Might be worth a post or two

It's a great day to be NewsBlur -- good luck with converting the new traffic!

Their website is down now.

Saw it on their Twitter, didn't take long for it to die as well.

Until NewsBlur is back, check out niflet.com. It can handle 1 million visits hourly. It has 4000 feeds (so far) and adapts to your interests.

On the podcasting side, I began http://player.fm to manage podcasts in the cloud. Since then, Google has dropped support for its official Android app, Listen, and now Reader, which many people used for podcasts.

It works from the browser, including mobile browsers, and native apps are coming. There's also an OPML importer, though currently experimental, and subscriptions can be consumed as OPML, RSS, etc.

Wow, didn't consider this until your post. Losing Listen would be a big hit.

Can anyone confirm that the Android Listen app will cease to function (i.e. refresh your existing feeds) once Google Reader is shut down? Am pretty sure that it relies solely on Google Reader's "Listen Subscriptions" tag for refreshing your podcast feeds, so that's definitely another gap that needs filling.

I think it will. Google Reader was key to Listen. I've been using BeyondPod since Google stopped supporting Listen. It works with Google Reader just like Listen did. It's disappointing that such a key feature will be lost. Does anyone know any Podcast apps for Android that supporting syncing feeds like Listen/BeyondPod did with Google Reader?

Google Listen was killed off in August 2012:


It still continues to work and be used though, so GP's question is relevant. I think it can still work without it, but I'd be surprised if it's superior to all of the other free alternatives in the absence of Reader.

I have been working on a river of news style RSS/ATOM/RiverJs client in the past few months (GPL3 license).

The project site is here http://rivers.silverkeytech.com and you get the app here http://goo.gl/kShgp.

The app is a bit young but it is maturing rapidly. I deploy a new version every two weeks or so. The next update is due in a few days.

Is there a way to import your google reader list into it?

You bet! It's OAuth-based import, so when you create your account it's just a click away. Couldn't be easier.

EDIT: And OPML is the other option when you signup. It's an easy import process, since it's really quite important to get that part right.

Does that import everything or just the list? It would be nice to be able to import all the content as gotten from here:


So I didn't import the first time I created the account - how do I re-import?! :)

Just click on the "+" button to add a new feed. In the dialog there is a button "Import from Google Reader or upload OPML".

A small warning: the OPML import will delete you current sites and replace them with the ones from OPML, they will not be merged with the current ones you have.


There is OPML import ability on the same modal that offers GR import.

It's taking like forever to import from reader.

Brilliant. I created an account. However, there are two very important features that Google reader has:

(1) It lets you add subscriptions to regular websites without an RSS feed.

(2) It lets you search for articles that were published before you subscribed to the feed.

I think you could add (2) simply by redirecting to Google search using the site:sitename.com argument.

(1) may not be that simple to add but it would be an incredibly important feature to have.

Google can do (1) because they crawl the entire web constantly. That's not going to be a trivial feature to add for anyone else. (2) is also probably a side effect of crawling pretty much everything before you ask for it.

I too am looking for a reader with rss search. This was the main reason I gave up whatever desktop app I was using at the time prior to Google Reader

Feedly does a decent job of picking up on which feed I mean when I put a site name in. I don't know how well that will work once they transition to their own API.

I started using NewsBlur about two months ago on a whim after using Google Reader for many years, and I really dig it.

It was super simple to import my feeds from Google and I find that the navigation in NewsBlur lets me read/scroll through items (and ignore articles that aren't interesting) much faster than Google Reader.

Anyone looking for a Google Reader substitute, definitely give NewsBlur a try!

NewsBlur is pretty good. I've used it for a while. I also write my own feed reader: Rssminer. It's not as full-fledged as NewsBlur, but is a much lighter alternative. It's support login with google and import google reader's subscription list.


I hope HN finds it useful too. It's also fully open-source too: https://github.com/shenfeng

It's fast and lightweight and uncluttered, which is great, but it lacks at least one bit of extremely critical functionality:

I need, 100%, to see my content in forward-chronological order (most-recent-last).

I've already given $24 for a year of NewsBlur, and I am super excited about being able to share and comment again. But, I know I'm not alone in wanting correct sorting.

Nice one.

Just 1-2 things I miss: - how can I mark an article read/unread? - could I delete an entire folder? - is there a limit on the number of feeds it can handle (I tried to import from reader, and I miss some feeds/folders)

I am trying to register to NewsBlur but I encounter an error every single time after submitting the registration form. You should have a look at it as this is the perfect time to grab new users.

Out of curiosity: have you also seen a decline in users? I'm interested to know whether Google has seen a decline due to a general loss of interest in feed readers, or whether they are losing users to competitors, such as yours.

Your website appears to be overloaded with traffic. You must be a happy man.

Does NewsBlur have something that resembles Reader's full-screen view? If not, is that anywhere on your roadmap?

Thank you. I've tried newsblur, but I just hadn't had the impetus to switch until now.

    <RSS>"Rumors of my death are much exaggerated"</RSS>

spin up more servers brother!

Does NewsBlur support authenticated ATOM feeds? Also, does it support 'deep' Craigslist queries?

I tried to add this feed, for example: http://denver.craigslist.org/search/cto?maxAsk=28000&min...

without success, but it could be your server getting hammered.

Thanks for your work. I signed up in December, thinking I'd check it out, and ended up liking it so much that I made the switch from Reader the same day (premium too).

I think that's a testament to how functional your app is. The iPhone app, while not up with Reeder (the iPhone app), is still very solid.

I look forward to the redesign too. The beta site looks great!

I have to say, an rss reader that depends on numpy and scipy is pretty intriguing.

I'm sure this has been reported already but, after creating an account I see:

"NewsBlur experienced an error

The error has been logged and will be fixed soon so you won't have to see this message again."


http://skimfeed.com - I don't like to share this out anymore because the server usually dies. But it's awesome.

If you like this layout you might also want to try out https://trackpanel.net

It lets you display RSS feeds (and bookmarks, tasks and notes) in a similar layout.

(Also plugging a side project of mine :-))

Usability tip: I would not have the Hi there box in the main panel. Maybe have it as a popup? Keep the main area clear.

Else, the first thing people try to do is find a way to close/remove/delete it so they can get started, which leads to the down arrow on it, which doesn't work to delete it. And now they're stuck wondering how to delete it...then they close the window without even tasting something they may have enjoyed.

The "Hi there ..." box is only displayed in the demo.

After you register you start with a completely empty panel which you can then fill with your own blocks.

Sorry for the confusion, I'll try to make it more clear :-)

I've been using NewsBlur for a few weeks now (I met Sam a couple weekends ago) and I think it's fantastic. Highly recommended.

How many sites can a free account follow? The front page copy says 64, but when I log in it says I can only turn on 12.

Found the commit, it was due to the load:


Hopefully it will go back to 64 once things get under control.

It was 64 before this news. The site regained some functionality when it went down to 12. I chose to go to Feedly instead, which was prepared for this news and works perfectly.

I just tried it out, but so far the only thing I can say is that it is potentially good, but way, way too slow.

It's open source and you get paid anyway?

It's doubtful the average user wants to run their own server. I'm certainly capable of running my own, but it's more than worth the $24/yr not to.

Better get some more servers. newsblur.com and dev.newsblur.com are not responding. "502 · NewsBlur is down"

Well, I'm now a paid-up Newsblur subscriber ... couldn't find an easy way of giving feedback on the site so thought I'd use HN.

The layout feels visually ... cluttered? ... but the functionality is excellent so I'm happy. Also the Google Reader import failed the first time, but succeeded the second.

I don't use it every day, but I've paid for it since I first started using it a long time ago... Always want to support cool stuff when I can.

Make sure there is an export feature, for some reason, I can't find it, and I'll be a daily user.

Very cool, but where is the content in the demo coming from? The first thing I clicked on was some anti-Pope Francis screed. If it's a crowdsourced demo that's one thing, but probably not the friendliest thing to hand-pick.

What is your Android widget like? The large Android widget ( i think it's 3x3?) is the only way I use Google Reader now, and I use it a lot. I hate that this is happening. Does your widget look like Reader's?

Newsblur's Android app doesn't have a widget.

The 'Import from Google Reader' option, while a great idea, a) it needs to be advertised better, and b) it doesn't seem work for me.

Very cool. I'll definitely check NewsBlur out. Hopefully it rocks so much that it makes me forget about Reader altogether.

Happy NewsBlur customer here. I do recommend the service to anyone needing a Reader replacement.

I just tried signing up but I received an error message. Congrats on all the interest :)

when i read about greader shutting down I instantly thought "good day for Samuel"

Any (relatively easy) way to import all your feed from gReader?

Thanks for making this, it is way better than Google Reader!

When did you lower the number of enabled feeds to 12?

When he realized that the traffic would be too much, and money would probably pour: https://twitter.com/NewsBlur/status/312025565815255040

It's a move that makes sense sure.

But it irks me that a service I've been using for however long just one day decides to cut my quota by 80%.

It doesn't exactly spur me to start paying.

He could just kill the product, like Google did with reader. Would that spur you to start paying?

Maybe you should just realize that you should pay for the shit you use. Or if you don't value your own time, grab the source and run it yourself (and pay at least $1/month for hosting it, but probably really $10-$20/month for hosting it yourself).

newsblur sucks totally, its interface is overloaded, it is slow. it only allows you a few feeds (unless you pay)

In what way is it slow? I've been using it for almost 2 years now, and have only seen slowness with particular feeds.

Thank you for supporting Meego!

And that site is down......

i don't see windows phone listed on the web site.

Is there a win8 version (win store, not desktop).


newsblur cannot access now

Looks like it's not able to handle the load. Will check in some time.

Nice app btw. The only good thing from GR closure might be that the dev community comes up with some real great alternatives. And yes, I hope paid ones.

For an alternative check out niflet.com. It adapts to your interests. It's written in Go, such that it can handle a ton of traffic on a cheap box.

Where shall I keep my feeds there? I mean my list of blogs that I want to follow. Their feed I mean. There is thousands of sources where I can explore, be social(though I hate the term) and read stories which learns from my choices (like Prismatic which certainly doesn't learn - just shows stories filtered using keywords).

So, no dear this doesn't cut it.

Yes, it won't cut it for those who want control over the feeds.

I highly doubt that the performance bottleneck has anything to do with serving cacheable static files. When a user asks you which of their feeds have been updated in the last 60 seconds, that's not the kind of request you can just offload to a CDN.

Even their landing page is down right now. Would help with that!

AFAIK, Cloudflare does not cache HTML files, full stop.

I believe it does - I use Cloudflare with my blog and every file, including *.html files, appears to be served by them.

The documentation and marketing on cloudflare.com is a bit misleading on this. Unless you do something unusual and potentially fragile with their page rules, it does not cache HTML: https://support.cloudflare.com/entries/22094188--Does-CloudF... It will hit your server for every page request.

(In fact it only caches certain static files as determined by their file extension. It does not seem to pay much attention to Content-Type of Cache headers. Ugh.)

Google Reader is irreplaceable, it is not only about reading RSS. That is the easy part. It is about going back in time and accessing all past feeds in an organized way (it is difficult to rebuilt that from crawling and web scraping). If you add a blog now you can read articles that are not present in the current feed.

Google Reader is the core of my information diet. Not twitter. Thousands of blogs starred, liked, and commented. An interesting feature that you couldn't replace is automatic translation: reading a russian blog asmit was written in english. Once I shared one of its articles and one friend asked me if I knew russian or if it was a joke my share! Because obviously the share was in the original language.

Google is evil. While I can understand a business decision, there are ways to hand it over to other companies or organizations.

I share some of my previous criticism:

- Extraction of Main Text Content Using the Google Reader NoAPI: http://blog.databigbang.com/extraction-of-main-text-content/

-Google Search NoAPI: http://blog.databigbang.com/google-search-no-api/

- The Data Portability Fact Sheet: http://blog.databigbang.com/the-data-portability-fact-sheet/

- Reverse Engineering and the Cloud: http://blog.nektra.com/main/2012/06/01/reverse-engineering-a...

> It is about going back in time and accessing all past feeds in an organized way

Yes, exactly. Google Reader is literally the only way to find past episodes of some podcasts - the files are still up, but after a site redesign nothing else links to them.

It's unclear to me if they're also discontinuing the Google Feed API: https://developers.google.com/feed/

This is quite valuable because it includes historical data, including stuff that's dropped off the currently available RSS feeds (many sites only list recent posts in their feeds).

Oh, and it looks like the feed API may not be used to save anything; Google's API ToS [1] document has the following text:

    Unless expressly permitted by the content owner
    or by applicable law, you agree that you will
    not, and will not permit your end users to, do
    the following with content returned from the APIs:

    * Scrape, build databases or otherwise create 
    permanent copies of such content, or keep cached 
    copies longer than permitted by the cache header;
    * Copy, translate, modify, create a derivative 
    work of, sell, lease, lend, convey, distribute, 
    publicly display or sublicense to any third party;
    * Misrepresent the source or ownership; or
    * Remove, obscure, or alter any copyright, 
    trademark or other proprietary rights notices,
    falsify or delete any author attributions, legal
    notices or other labels of the origin or source 
    of material.
The first two bullet points are the ones that apply. You can't use the feed API to fetch a bunch of feeds and make them available through an app, for example.

[1] https://developers.google.com/terms/

According to the ToS at https://developers.google.com/feed/terms:

    Google will announce if we intend to discontinue
    or make backwards incompatible changes to this 
    API or Service. We will use commercially
    reasonable efforts to continue to operate the 
    Google Feed API without these changes until 
    April 20, 2015, unless (as Google determines in 
    its reasonable good faith judgment):

    * required by law or third party relationship 
    (including if there is a change in applicable 
    law or relationship), or
    * doing so could create a security risk or 
    substantial economic or material technical 

    This Deprecation Policy doesn't apply to 
    versions, features, and functionality labeled 
    as "experimental."
Of course, who knows what "commercially reasonable efforts" really mean.

Wait.. so they have a service that in your words is so good it is irreplaceable.. and taking it away makes them evil?

That's pretty strong!

Yes, their historical data can't be rebuilt. A little bit like what happened with USENET and Google buying DejaNews. Nobody has that data.

So go and grab the data you care about while it's there?

I'm trying to understand why Google suddenly gets responsibility for archiving the entire internet for incompetent websites.

Because that is what googles mission is?

To index all the worlds information and make it universually useful?

Oh right, these days it is making shitty copies of facebook.

Because that is what googles mission is? To index all the worlds information and make it universually useful?

Yes. But failure to do that to someones satisfaction doesn't make them evil.

Or if it does... well I've failed at so many things I must belong to the axis of evil.

No, Google's mission is to make money. Everything else is optional.

Why not enter drug dealing business then?

Legality issues?

No, risks.

I thought their copy of Facebook is pretty good, or at least better than the original.

It fails on a crucial point.

My friends are not posting on it.

Indeed, though increasingly I see user disengagement is an area where Facebook seems to be moving in the direction of G+.

If you have archeological pieces, even being the owner you can't destroy them.

I believe this is called getting "scroogled".

It is about going back in time and accessing all past feeds...

I don't think Reader can find anything that Google search doesn't know. Using site:sitename.com in a regular Google search should bring up past entries as well.

Reader actually archives feeds, so there are a lot of defunct pages in Reader that Search can't find.

Also, it is strange that they fund driverless cars but close Google Reader! why not contract a small team of interns to keep the site running?

That's the first Google service shutdown that I'm affected by.

Sad to see it go.

What do you guys recommend for replacement? I know about NewsBlur [1], but I never liked it that much.

I think I'm just looking for something that would emulate Reader's full-screen view as close as possible.

[1] http://newsblur.com

edit: Here's what I consider an absolute must-have in RSS app:

- complete navigation with keyboard (j/k preferred)

- full screen mode (really, I don't need a sidebar of a fixed header all the time)

- feed view (not just list of items, show me excerpts!)

And I know I may be the weird one, but I really, really dislike readers that try to show me items directly from feeds webpage. I find it jarring and distracting when I have five totally different layouts flash before my eyes within 10 seconds (I skim headlines and then skip most of items in my feed).

And for the love of god, please, please, no goddamn 'WE LEARN WHAT YOU LIKE' or any kind of bullshit 'smart selection'. I selected my feeds myself, I can manage them just fine by myself, just get out of my way, please.

> What do you guys recommend for replacement?

That's the hard part. Reader integrates nicely with Android's Listen (podcast app), and the reader app, and there's plenty of standalone clients that sync with Google.

That's my most-used Google app. By far. Colossal disappointment.

Nice to know that there's still at least one other Google Listen user in the world. I'm a huge podcast consumer, I like listening to old podcasts which have fallen off the RSS feed, and I still haven't found anything better.

I honestly don't know what I'm going to do now. As far as I'm aware, nobody besides Google has been archiving RSS history for the past few years. It's a massive pain to dig for old podcast episodes any other way, as full feeds are extremely rare.

I used to be a big Listen user, but the app was so buggy. Then I found Stitcher and never went back.

Listen was better, but i kinda like PocketCasts, the only problem with that one is that it eats up battery :/

BeyondPod. Been using that to manage my podcasts for a few years. It can import from Google Reader or maintain its own podcast list. Easy to export out if needed.

I used to use Google Listen, but at some point started using BeyondPod and recently - within the last couple of weeks - went to the paid version of BeyondPod. It works great.

Based on your must-have list, a good low-tech solution might be an RSS to email gateway.

Then your mail client becomes your RSS client. Gmail has j/k key bindings, is relatively unadorned, and facilitates your skim / skip workflow. Excerpts might require some work, but perhaps you could coerce them into the subject line.

Aaron Swartz wrote a nice RSS to email gateway btw: http://www.allthingsrss.com/rss2email/

I have a crappier one that delivers directly into a Maildir, and I use it to read news in mutt: http://search.cpan.org/~acg/rssdrop-0.2/rssdrop

"Low-tech"? Email is the best way to read RSS! Email has all the features of high-end RSS headers:

  * Remember your read messages, even across clients
  * Star and read for later
  * Cross-platform
  * Configurable archiving
  * Keyword filtering
  * Search past articles
  * Organize feeds into folders using configurable rules
  * Social! (Use the "forward" button.)
What's not to like about email?

I'm surprised more people don't do this. It's pretty easy to set up.

Here's a little bit I wrote about using rss2email + emacs. http://www.emacswiki.org/emacs/HOWTOReadFeedsInEmacsViaEmail

IFTTT will let you easily do RSS to email too: ifttt.com/feed

I just Fever (http://www.feedafever.com/). You host it yourself, and it does the job perfectly.

Bought it a few years ago... and I wouldn't recommend it. It was created in a pre-iPad/iPhone era and it's not comfortable to use from anywhere else than a PC.

I haven't used Fever personally, but I do know the popular Reeder RSS client for Mac and iOS has Fever support.

The problem is that reading their website it seems like it does not support multiple users? If I am going to self-host, I'd rather do it in a way that can support my family and friends.

(Currently) only the iPhone version of Reeder supports Fever. The iPad version does not. In version 2.0 the dev team might add support for Fever.

That's true, but you'll have to recommend something as an alternative instead, since there is only a finite amount of RSS services; I say that as an RSS power user.

Beggars can't be choosers. :)

Agreed. I moved to Fever ages ago, never looked back. Works great on my iPhone too.

Combined with Instapaper, I have feel like I have achieved the perfect reading workflow.

I also vouch for Fever. Someone on HN recommended Fever to me when Bloglines initially bit the dust a couple years ago and it meets every need I've wanted from an RSS reader and more. The genius of it's design is that Fever gets more useful the more RSS feeds you subscribe to, which initially seems counter-intuitive, but is brilliant.

Quicktime required for the demo video? Seriously? Sorry, I don't have quicktime installed on this computer, and the days of me installing local applications/plugins to watch video online are over.

Is this any good? Do you have the ability to customize it yourself?

I don't know what you mean by customize, but the extent of customization only extends to grouping feeds in folders and choosing how and in which order to display them.

So I wouldn't call it customizable.

PHP and MySQL, yuck!

Is the software any less useful because it's not created in a trendy language?

One of the advantages that PHP has is that virtually any cheap web-host in the world can run it. It's not a bad choice to sell a self-hosted product in PHP because of this advantage.

I'm not a huge fan of PHP for many types of projects, but I don't see how it benefits anybody to reflexively hate on something just because of a technology choice.

PHP was such a security nightmare for so long that I am very reluctant to enable it on any box I actually care about. (It could well be better. It's been a long time since I was sysadmining many boxes.) So for a project I have to do the hosting on, language choice still matters to me.

And you're a huge fan of Ruby on Rails right...?

And he's also part of the Long Now Foundation and did volunteer coding for MediaWiki (Don't know the guy, just googled around).

No need to be mean to a nice guy. :-\

Whatever else he's running, adding PHP to it increases the risk.

That's true of any piece of software you add.

I've worked in RoR, but calling me a huge fan would be a stretch. I have a number of substantial issues with it.

Maybe it's just what I've happened to see, but my impression is th I certainly had to do a lot more upgradingat the PHP platform security issues were more frequent and more substantial than RoR has been. I certainly had to do a lot more upgrading. Maybe it's different these days.

But the major difference I've seen up close is that RoR makes it much easier for average programmers to be productive while still coding securely. If I'm going to be running J. Random Hacker's code on a personal server, I'm going to worry less with Rails.

All that said, I'd also be reluctant to install a Rails app. Just less reluctant than PHP.

Oops. Sorry for the word salad in paragraph 2. Caught once again by the middle mouse button.

We're here to make $$$, not to be trendy. There's plenty of good reasons to use PHP, especially if commercial viability is a primary goal.

PHP and MySQL aren't that bad (and support for them is pretty much guaranteed on every web host).

However, the fact that it supports PHP 4.2 and MySQL 3.23 makes me wonder how old the code base is! Makes me think it's using so many obsolete PHP methods, the deprecated MySQL extension, and is all procedural code (which almost always seems to be spaghetti code with PHP).

So what if it works, it's not like you are going to have to scale it to millions of users. Just make sure it's firewalled and you're good to go.

It works reliably on simple shared host. The developer rolls out automatic updates as well. PHP is a perfectly fine solution for this purpose.

If it works, it works.

http://www.protopage.com has full screen mode with keyboard navigation if you first do Colors/Settings then untick "open news items directly" (Unticking this will mean headlines will open in the internal full text RSS news feed reader instead of navigating to the headline's web page directly).

http://netnewswireapp.com is wonderful for the Mac users out there that aren't tied to an HTML solution.

Pretty sure you can sync with your Google Reader account and then delete it from the app, and it'll remember your subscriptions. Just deleted mine and it works fine.

Netnewswire is great but now they should provide a new way to sync feeds and especially read/unread counts, flagged and unflagged items, and favorites instead of relying on GReader.

If someone wants a pitch here: don't go for a reader, go for a simple WebDAV like system to keep feeds in sync cross-app with APIs so simple that every dev would include it in its feed reading app!

Caveat: Still early[1], less featured than Google/RSS Reader. But also more.

[1] http://memamsa.com/start/gr

For a news aggregator that adapts to your interests, try niflet.com. I'll add any decent feeds people want.

No localization, I'm not too interested in USA news.

It has a lot of non-USA sites. Just upvote the stuff you like.

I have been using Twitter/Flipboard+Instapaper for a while now as a replacement for traditional RSS readers. I do use Tweetbot but most twitter clients do have "Read Later" applications integrated.

I found bazqux.com which has the keyboard shortucts i wanted as well

> That's the first Google service shutdown that I'm affected by.

You never use Google Code Search RIP?

"over the years usage has declined"

That's because there was almost ZERO innovation done on this product. Very few (mostly visual) improvements, and very few new features. The latest posts on Google Reader blog are from 2011 http://googlereader.blogspot.com/

Was thinking the same thing - usage has declined in part because Google doesn't promote it.

Google shapes the way many people discover, use and keep information (google search, maps, news, finance, gmail, etc). To let Reader languish then kill it because "usage has declined" is rather self-fulfilling. I bet if they didn't update their satellite images and road data, Maps usage would decline as well.

They could have been working with the community to define new standards - tags, markup, etc - to allow richer interaction between rss readers and sites (thinking geoloc micro format work, and other semantic markup work in recent years). Making 'reader' a first-class citizen in its suite of services, then using interaction data as more relevance signaling seems like an evolutionary step that only a handful of players the size of google can make good use of, but apparently in their infinite wisdom, they'll just shutter it.

It's worse than that. The google plus era redesign of all google sites ate up a massive fraction of the vertical space in Google Reader. And some social sharing features that made google reader an awesome place, were disabled in favor of sharing via google plus.

Agreed with this, most notable example of this for me was when they took away recommendations within Google Reader. That was a great place to go to see what blog posts my friends like.

Now it's all multiplexed into their G+ timelines and I happen to catch about a third of it in between their useless updates about being in a park with their kids or a new funny meme.

Actually, there has been negative innovation. When google+ launched, they removed all of the sharing/social features (which I used heavily, had a large network of friends) to try to drive more users to google+.

It seems like a disingenuous explanation - they effectively decided to kill it years ago when they stopped staffing a team, then they just can wait a few years until it's really stale to formally shut it down.

That would make more sense if there was a competitor that had arisen with better features and taken away users. Looking at the rest of this page, there doesn't seem to be any competitor at remotely the same scale as Google Reader.

If usage is declining with nobody stealing users, it's less a sign that innovation stopped than the overall market demand started shrinking. In which case, adding more features might not make a ton of sense. There's not a lot of business sense to investing more in capturing a larger share of a declining business.

It's their way of saying that they were trying to work on new social ventures such as Google+ that are a new venue for some of these uses.

Pretty irritated at the way Google takes moderately successful services that can't possibly cost them all that much to keep running and puts them down the memory hole, to foster the happy illusion that everything that everything that Google does turns to gold.

I'm sure there's more engagement with Reader than Plus, with its millions of users who don't really use it (many of whom aren't even really aware that they are signed up for it).

Google is one of those companies that make me feel like a wuss for being their customer. Okay, in this case one could (convincingly) argue that advertisers are the real customers of Google Reader, but I would have gladly just paid for the service. Apple is another such company for me, and I dumped considerable amounts of money into them, and they similarly just let me know with every single action that I'm not their kind of customer.

So the question becomes not "why is everyone using them?" or even "why are they doing things like this?", it starts with people like me who got to ask themselves honestly "why do I keep relying on these guys?".

Gmail is my main email account and it makes me deeply uncomfortable. I love OS X, despite its ever-increasing flaws, and that makes me feel like a hostage experiencing Stockholm syndrome. Facebook is the only thing in this category I actually stopped caring about on my own, but if I'm being honest that's more my friends' fault for re-enacting soap opera scripts online and offline, and less because Facebook is a data-grabbing virus that screws its users over at every turn (which it is).

My only face-saving answer to that conundrum is those products offer me some things that others don't, they have features that large companies are better positioned to deliver on. However, that's not a permanent state of things, as the complex features of yesterday become increasingly more feasible for smaller developers to tackle tomorrow. Maybe it's a good thing that Google and others are finally straight-up bent on filtering nerds like me out of their customer base, maybe that's the kick needed to overcome inertia and complacency.

Agreed on most points. And to be honest, if you're a real customer of Google (we use them for our business) you are treated worse than the "free service" (where you aren't the customer, you're the product). Our work accounts have a fraction of the functionality of our free accounts and the idea that this is somehow doing us a favor ("we only give you the very most stable of our services") is rather unconvincing.

What apps is this the case for? Our Google work stuff is identical to personal Google stuff as far as I can see.

Google Voice was gmail-only for a long time.

Google Plus was as well.

Currently, I am waiting for Google Now's gmail integration to get on apps already: http://support.google.com/nexus/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answ...

Those are just services that have/are affected/ing me; I'm certain there are plenty of other examples.

I can't speak for the parent, but an issue in this vein that most recently affected me is the months it took google to allow GApps customers to create a google+ account with their apps login.

Gmail for Apps still can't auto-add people to your chat list, even though the option is there.

You really should get off Gmail. At the very least, use a domain and google apps for your domain, to keep the option of fleeing later.

Even for search, there are really only a few companies crawling now -- Google, Bing/MS, and Blekko. I'm going to try Bing for a month (I tried in the past, and it wasn't great, but was close) and Blekko for another month, but I'm pretty sure I don't care about any other Google services.

Respectfully, I know that. And I know you mean well but the purpose of my post was exploring motives why I didn't yet. I know it's not fashionable to conduct oneself around here as anything but infallibly well-informed and doing all the things exactly right, but I wanted to offer a perspective of someone who sometimes exhibits imperfections in regard to the products he uses and the tradeoffs that may play a role in selecting certain kinds of products despite the downsides.

I just meant that it's reasonable to make the tradeoff to trust a vendor like Apple/Google/etc. with whom you have fundamental philosophical differences now, if their product is better than the alternatives. What's not OK is to have no possible way to switch.

Changing an email address or phone # is probably enough of a lock-in to be "impossible". Changing the service provider you use otherwise to provide your phone/email/etc., probably a pain, but possible.

Facebook doesn't support indirection (which is why it's crazy that businesses promote fb.com/site urls), but as you've pointed out, it doesn't actually provide a useful service, so if it goes away, no big loss.

2 more for search, Yandex is growing fast and getting really good, and DuckDuckGo of course. I've been using Yandex a lot lately. Their products are getting more available in English, in fact they have webmail with a built-in RSS reader that resembles google reader.

DDG is essentially passthrough to Google/Bing/Blekko, though, so you're still somewhat exposed to the risk of those companies being crazy. Although I guess 3 is enough that DDG should be able to survive even if 1-2 go crazy or die.

It's perhaps somewhat nationalist, but Russian companies are slightly above Chinese companies on my list of "would I want my traffic going through their infrastructure", from a privacy/information security standpoint. I don't think this is irrational. (The US is far from ideal either, but has stronger laws, although is more likely to be "interested". The ideal would be a Canadian or European search provider run in some kind of hostproof model.)

My vouch wouldn't probably mean much, but yandex are by and large not-evil guys. They can be forced to abide the law, but I believe they haven't willfully done anything really unethical yet. Unfortunately, yandex search is inferior to google for English queries, which diminishes their usefulness a lot.

I tend to trust almost all techies by default, but their government, not so much. The same thing applies to the US, though, although at least in the US there's enough precedent from pre-2001 or pre-1990s to restrain the government slightly. Russia and China don't have the extended period of relative legal sanity the US had from ~1781 to sometime in the 1900s, or common law tradition from England from 1300 onward.

DDG has their own crawler, but its difficult to take on a giant gorilla like Google in one shot.

I think over time DDG will do just fine.

I tried having my own domain's mail for a while, and got burned hard when my (cheap) webhost's servers were down for a couple of days. It's hard to argue with free, easy, and reliable when the alternative is costly, difficult, and more likely to go down.

You don't have to host the email yourself. Just grab your own domain, set up a free gmail account, and forward all the email from your domain to the gmail account. Configure gmail to always send replies as from you@yourdomain.com.

What this does is eliminate the biggest point of lock-in to gmail. In the worst case scenario you can switch to another email provider with the flick of a DNS entry, no worries about losing your email address.

I switched to http://domains.live.com from google apps for my personal email. The new outlook.com is a LOT cleaner than Gmail.

> it starts with people like me who got to ask themselves honestly "why do I keep relying on these guys?".

Boy, you really summed up my own personal feelings on this. I'm beginning to rethink my own Gmail usage now.

I for one welcome this change as an opportunity for growth. Google has not put any effort into reader for some time now. Maybe some innovative company will get the google reader user base and build something great.


OTOH I do feel sad that reader is gone as it has been a part of my daily life for many years now. Some say that RSS is dead but I cannot find any alternative to feeds I've collected.

You know what you call a product you don't put much effort into for some time and which is still in daily use by happy users?



I would like more powerful filtering options and better recommendations. For example, Hacker News feed is impossible to follow as RSS on reader as it has too high volume (for me at least). I would be content with ~40 daily recommendations.

Google reader had decent random recommendations before the G+ update. I believe that a good recommendation system can guess relevant items for given user, but that was not what google reader has been doing for some time now.

I long ago switched to the Hacker News 100 feed: http://talkfast.org/2010/07/23/a-cure-for-hacker-news-overlo...

I've been using this RSS feed of top stories: http://hnbest.herokuapp.com/

Thanks! This should really be listed in the HN/rss page.

While it doesn't cost Google much to keep Google Reader going, it does sacrifice ad revenue that would be gained if people visited the website(s).

I know there is an ad service for the feeds but as far as I am aware they aren't very profitable.

Are you sure the shutdown is to foster an illusion?

Maybe there simply isn't a good upside to keep this service going and its a business decision?

What the fuck.

Later edit: Like many other will most likely do in their replies I'm also going to suggest an alternative that I've tried in the past. http://theoldreader.com/

Later edit 2: They even added a nice pop-up now. https://s3.amazonaws.com/i.imm.io/Zg6A.png

Well.. was going to sign in with my google account, but they seem to want "manage my contacts" permission.

Could be an oversight. I think "manage my contacts" is a default permission requested when not explicitely setting the scope in OAuth...

This is not an oversight, it's even mentioned in their privacy policy [0], although I also stopped at that point. Whenever I see a service requesting permission to even have a look at my contact list, I really wish there were a button like "No, I really don't need this social stuff because I know noone in my contact list uses your service anyway and if someone does, I really don't care".

[0] http://theoldreader.com/pages/privacy

Thanks. That rules out the Old Reader for me. I think they should make it optional: only ask for this permission if I try to use the social functionality.

That they would make such an oversight makes me even more uneasy with giving them access to my data.

At least in Google Reader one can email articles, and it auto-suggests email addresses of your contacts. So Google Reader already has access to your Google Contacts.

Perhaps The Old Reader just does the same?

I hate that too. When I get some free time, I'll create a new gmail account, import my Reader feeds to that, and sign in to theoldreader using the new gmail account. I suppose this will solve the problem, but it would be best if the good people at theoldreader fix it themselves.

They address some of the problems in their new blog post.


Indeed - I stopped short for exactly the same reason. Can't imagine why I'd want a reader app to mess with my contacts in any way.

That's where I stopped and shall not try it ever if they don't remove and no, I am not going to create a new a/c for that. I mean it's totally for spamming purposes - either to me or my contacts.

By the way, interface looks cleaner, I wish so were the intentions :-)

The Old Reader actually looks really good. If only it had an Android app...



"Thank you for uploading your OPML file. We will soon start importing your subscriptions, which might take up to several hours depending on the amount of feeds you have.

There are 22325 users in the import queue ahead of you."

It may take some time indeed... I have 114 subscriptions and some of them can be dead now, as I haven't used GR for quite some time.

So I added a feed to theoldreader, and it shows as last updated: 14 hours ago, even though there's been posts since then. Google Reader has already picked them up. The Old Reader sure lives up to its name of delivering me old news...

Other alternatives I tried are also disappointing. July 1 will be a terrible day for the Internet.

theoldreader.com looks like a good alternative

It actually is pretty decent.

theoldreader seems to have died on my feed import to the best I can tell, anyone seen anything similar? It says it is still working in the background, but no update past the first 3 it imported...

It's definitely slow right now.Just wait a few minutes.

FINALLY. I let it work overnight and they finally showed. Now if only they would work on the OAUTH limits mentioned above.

I guess you had a lot of feeds.

can I register to theoldreader if I don't have a facebook/google account?

No.But you should already have a google account since you used google reader I suppose.

I have, but I don't feel comfortable with this: "The Old Reader is requesting permission to: View and manage your Google Contacts"

There should be more info about this here but the page is currently down. https://theoldreader/pages/privacy

Ouch, what font rendering is that?

Customized freetype for excessive eye bleeding.

Google should open source it. Seriously. Donate the code base to the open source community, and let someone run with it.

With some luck it'd attract enough developers to keep the project alive. Or maybe somebody would figure out a way to monetize the effort. Either option, it'd be much better than just let the service die.

It's not unprecedented. Google did exactly this with Google Wave.

Sadly, I don't think this will ever happen. This project is too small to justify the resources needed to clean up the code and solve any dependencies. And, differently than Chromium / Android / Google Wave, Google Reader is not a platform / protocol / OS. It's just yet-another pet project for a company that - sooner or later - has to justify its investment to Wall Street.

This isn't the first, and certainly won't be the last, product that Google creates just to later destroy it, when it discover it has no business or economic justification.

Keep this in mind when developing for Mirror API, or anything else that is not core for the company.

I doubt that open sourcing it is going to be any help to anyone since it probably integrates deeply with Google's proprietary backends.

I wonder if Merchant Circle would be willing to sell the old Bloglines codebase seeing as they aren't using it.

I'll bet you anything the catalyst behind this is in some way related to G+, the introduction of which has led to a steady removal of features from Reader.

This news is really rubbing me the wrong way; I've been a long-time Google customer, even a 'Google hipster' as my friends would say. I'm an early-adopter that often beta tests. I was the only one at work with GMail when it was released, and was always out of invites that first year. Same for GVoice (which I've had since GrandCentral), GWave, Apps for personal domains, and Chrome (where I've posted many bug reports that were accepted).

I've been with Reader since the year it came out, though I never used any other RSS reader -- I'd tried several, but they all sucked; Reader was just a breath of fresh air, "cloud" based before that was even a buzzword, and I've introduced many a friend to its wonderful utility. My favorite feature was the _'note in reader'_ bookmarklet, which they killed in favor of crappy G+, but now they're going to outright kill the entire product?

My only hope, if they don't grant a stay of execution, will be that they open-source the code such as they did with Wave. At least then I'll have some hope of retaining my most-used web app of all time.

    From your 117 subscriptions, over the last 30 days you read 398 items, clicked 189 items, starred 7 items, and emailed 0 items.

    Since October 26, 2010 you have read a total of 20,685 items.
(I think 10/2010 is when I was finally able to transition my normal GMail account to a GAFYD account, thus why the metrics stop there)

Needless to say, I use this app 10x more than any other, including email (edit: ok I might be exaggerating).

Also, it looks like the Google Operating System (unofficial blog) recognized the distress signals back in December with "Google Reader, 'Constantly on the Chopping Block'"[1].

Where's my pitchfork...

1. http://googlesystem.blogspot.com/2012/12/google-reader-const...

Without iGoogle, and Google Reader.. honestly, I don't have much use for Google over say DuckDuckGo. I signed into the Android/Google echosystem.. mainly for iGoogle, and Reader.. with both going away, I'm pretty close to out.

Until you brought it up, I didn't realize that those are really the only two products of theirs I use outside of search as well...


LOL - I hadn't been aware of that blog, so headed over to take a look. Liked it so much I was just about to hit "Add to Reader"...


Mark my words, Blogger is next for some choppie-choppie. Have you noticed how it, too, is steadily being neglected/deprecated in favour of posting to some G+ river of drivel?

D: I'm sure that's going to be a phantom pain (pang?) felt by us for sometime to come starting 7/1...

I highly recommend the blog though, it does a really good job of keeping an eye on all things Google beyond the normal press releases. Today there's a post with some interesting Reader data points[1].

1. http://googlesystem.blogspot.com/2013/03/google-reader-data-...

I hate saying this, as it sounds like I'm just bitter, but this really could be enough to finally leverage me off of google. Reader is by far my most used app of theirs. Plus is garbage in comparison.

I am the say way. And I feel that my heavy use of Gmail and Google Reader meant that I was more likely to use other Google products when needed, ie Docs, Calendar. Without Reader, I don't feel like a Google user, just a Gmail user.

I've been a Google Reader user since the beginning, and have had an uneasy sense that this was coming for a while. I started building a replacement for it that fits my needs a couple months ago.

It's not ready yet, but I thought I might as well toss up a launchrock page and collect email addresses from other folks who might be interested: http://signup.viafeeds.com

Here are my guiding principles:

1. It's going to cost money. I refuse to 'lose money on each customer, but make it up on volume.' I imagine that for more casual users, this'll be a nominal amount. I won't compromise on this because....

2. I want to build something sustainable, and have it be enough of a profit center for me that I'm willing to focus on it and continually improve it for years to come.

3. I want to build something that I'll love more than Google Reader. I spend at least an hour a day in Google Reader, and want to make sure that whatever I build has the simplicity of Reader.

I have a lot of interesting ideas I want to try out around inclusion of contextual information and the ability to easily save or share articles or clips of articles in multiple ways. From conversations I've had with friends in the journalism world, there's a real need for a product like this, especially one with a legitimate business model.

Regarding where this fits in relative to NewsBlur: I think NewsBlur is doing a lot of interesting stuff, but it feels heavyweight to me, compared to Google Reader. I want a very minimalistic, "just the facts, ma'am" experience.

What do you want to see in a news feed product? Where do you think Google Reader could've or should've been in 2013 if Google had properly maintained it?

Anyway, to reiterate, if you're interested, head over here and enter your email address: http://signup.viafeeds.com (I just created the domain an hour ago, so hopefully it'll have propagated to your DNS server).

  | 'lose money on each customer, but make it up on volume.'
I think that you meant something else. Nobody "makes it up in volume." ;)

If only you had been there to warn pets.com.

I guess you are not a native speaker? (Neither am I.)

It started off as a joke, then it became a lame joke, and now it is just an idiom.

According to the Economist style guide, in writing, you can either use fresh expressions, or expressions that have been so worn out that they are just part of the language now and no longer register. Avoid using expressions that are over-used, but not to the point of becoming idiomatic, yet. Those will annoy your readers.

That's the joke.

Weird decision. Judging by my logs, and those of several other sites I know about, it still has quite significant usage, though I don't know what their threshold is. For example, my own blog has 12x as many Google Reader subscribers as NewsBlur subscribers. Perhaps even with significant usage, that usage wasn't monetizable, and the what-people-read data wasn't valuable enough to keep it operating?

Good news for the competition, anyway: Google Reader being pretty good yet completely free and not (obviously) monetized occupied a lot of that space, which is now freed up.

edit: In fact, I see NewsBlur is completely unresponsive now, presumably due to sudden interest.

Newsblur had under 2,000 users in the last day. So the usage of Google Reader isn't as significant as you think.

Former Reader PM here, no longer at Google. Having fought many times to keep Reader alive, it's worth considering whether a large enough outcry would lead them to reconsider.

White House Petition!

Within the limits of confidentiality and business ethics, can you explain what the issues are in a situation like this? I agree with other readers above that Reader is probably a poor source of ad clicks and thus direct revenue, but it seems like it would offer invaluable forward intelligence for Google (just as searches for 'influenza' and 'flu' have proved to be excellent leading epidemiological indicators). ISTM that the value proposition for Google was in mining the behavior of Reader users to identify what would be interesting/ popular/ important a week or a month from now, and would help to optimize the value of keyword searches etc in adwords.

As a stand-alone product, Google Reader could easily have justified continued investment and headcount.

The problem is that internally you're competing for resources against products with (a) tons of users (Gmail), (b) tons of revenue (AdWords), (c) high strategic priority (Android, Google+).

To justify staffing a smaller product, you have to argue that it has the potential to be as big as the other products, and that the marginal impact of an engineer is higher on an under-staffed product.

Sounds like the unwritten correlate of that is that you can't measure what you don't build, and without the measurements you don't get to build. I wonder what magic econometric fairy dust grants a project high strategic priority.

Considering how much effectiveness an internal campaign (RNCH) had at changing things (none), I think this would be a waste of time.

Dear Mr President, you must use an executive order to stop Google from shutting down the reader service. Thanks, ~everyone.

I actually know someone who did this, hahahaha.


I've been an active, daily user of Google Reader since the beginning. I knew this was coming, but it still doesn't feel right because unlike other Google properties that I don't use, it's part of my information flow.

What I'd really like to see here on HN is a post comparing other RSS contenders like NewsBlur and The Old Reader.

These seems to be the most short sighted bit - they had the techarati 1% visiting a Google social media property multiple times a day and yet they neutered it (rather than integrating properly) to work more on Google+.

My impression is that the internet's elite click almost no ads, so Google as a profit-seeking entity doesn't necessarily care too much about what they do or think in aggregate, as long as they don't get upset enough to be heard by people who actually make up their revenue streams.

That's what's stupid. Outlier users like this are the least likely to be attracted to standard consumption vectors like ads (IYSWIM), but the avenues of investigation they pursue instead are likely a very good guide to where the median consumer in a given market will move later.

A fanatic motorcyclist (for example) is going to scour all sorts of obscure information sources that non-fanatics will not have the patience or time for. But that pattern of scouring will point towards the factors which do move the mass of consumers some time later. Heavy users of Reader were supplying Google with a lot of high-quality data, and if the product had been given the same attention as something like GMail that information would be worth proportionally more.

I'd love that kind of comparison that also includes if there is any desktop (linux hopefully) app support too. I've been using google reader and liferea to keep my rss feeds synced between devices and to avoid re-reading things i already saw.


It is my most accessed browser URL.

It is the primary method I peruse new stuff on the web.

It is the only RSS app that can handle my volume of RSS subscriptions (all others choke and sputter once the feed total is greater than a couple hundred).

Uh oh. Not good for someone with over a thousand RSS feeds from various updates-once-a-year products or sites.

You can export most of your data (and certainly the list of feeds you follow) http://www.dataliberation.org/google/reader

> CalDAV API will become available for whitelisted developers (only)

Wasn't a big brouhaha about windows phone only supporting Exchange protocol and not the open standard that's used by everyone: CalDAV? Oh, and now Google is discontinuing it! Let's see how much longer Exchange will last...

I think it's insane. When they announced they were ditching ActiveSync because it's proprietary they were selling us on CalDAV support because it's a "standard". That kind of made sense and it was moving the world towards a better place. Now they're saying they don't like CalDAV either, so just use the Google Calendar API. I don't see how this is any different from the proprietariness of ActiveSync.

Sigh, I'm not really sure I trust Google to do the right thing anymore.

The downside of Google's product strategy of throwing things against a wall is becoming clear. This post is from 3 days ago:


So even as Microsoft is working to implement support for Google calendar syncing, Google pulls the rug out. This also leaves iOS users with no Google calendar syncing mechanism.

If Google is open, they have a strange way of showing it.

It just makes no sense at all. I don't get how they decide to do a complete u-turn on the CardDAV issue in just a couple of months. It's almost like they're doing this just to aggravate Windows Phone users.

I hope someone at Microsoft is paying attention. They should just step up to the plate now and announce IMAP + CalDAV + CardDAV support on their services for those who want it. I'd switch in a blink.

More like let's see how much longer Google Apps will last in the enterprise. I am NOT a big MS fan, but Windows & Office is still a major factor for businesses and a big part of the Apps allure was that it was interoperable with existing Windows/Office deployments.

As enterprises using Apps upgrade and find that they no longer sync with any of their brand new software, people are going to be very upset - particularly those with egg on their face who sold their company on Google Apps (like yours truly)

No kidding.

Compared to my clients that choose Exchange-friendly services like Office 365, the clients on Google Apps (paid or not) have been feeling a world of pain since the Office 2013 upgrade. I remember reading a post on some official Google blog late last year talking about how they were going to aggressively target and steal Microsoft's purchase in the enterprise. In reality, they're struggling horribly to even retain the customers they've coaxed over, in my experience. Whether they like it or not, ActiveSync is the most pervasive protocol for syncing mail, calendars, and contacts across a wide range of devices. It's a travesty that they're choosing a holy war against Microsoft instead of supporting what would serve their users best.

Would you be interested in a Google Calendar API to CalDAV translator program or service?

That seems like a backward step.

Just want to repeat here my tweets: Maybe GoLang will be retired in August? AngularJS in September? GAE in October? "Backed by Google" is a joke now. I just can't trust Google anymore. Google Reader was important part of my day - source of information. Google apps are too UNSTABLE to use.

> GAE in October?

AppEngine's deprecation policy:

7.2 Deprecation Policy.

Google will announce if we intend to discontinue or make backwards incompatible changes to this API or Service. We will use commercially reasonable efforts to continue to operate that Service without these changes until the later of: (i) one year after the announcement or (ii) April 20, 2015, unless (as Google determines in its reasonable good faith judgment):

# required by law or third party relationship (including if there is a change in applicable law or relationship), or

# doing so could create a security risk or substantial economic or material technical burden.

[0] https://developers.google.com/appengine/terms scroll down to 7.2

Speaking of Twitter, I just checked my feed to find that a huge number of people I follow (from tech nerds to game developers to independent journalists) are upset that Google Reader is dying.

This seems like a huge mistake. Why doesn't Google want to be the one place I can go for everything? They should be cultivating that kind of brand loyalty, not stomping all over it.

One more for the list of killed Google services:

Code Search, Google Search API (twice), Google Video, Wave, Buzz, Google Labs, Google Desktop, Google Notebook, Google Sets, Google Squared, Google Catalogs, Google Answers, Audio Ads, Google Base, Browser Sync, City Tours, Click-to-Call, Google Dashboard Widgets, Dodgeball, Jaiku, Google Mashup Editor, Google Directory, GOOG-411, Joga Bonito, Aardvark, Lively, Music Trends, Ride Finder, Google Shared Stuff, Sidewiki, FastFlip, Google Translate API, Writely, Google Health, PowerMeter, Google University Search, U.S. Government Search, Slide products (Disco, Pool Party, Video Inbox, Photovine, Slideshow, SuperPoke! Pets), Google Pack, Image Labeller and Google Dictionary.

Friends don't let friends rely on free web services.

Wow, at first I was thinking that this was their first shutdown that really affected me, but looking at your list there's many other services that I really enjoyed and utilized very frequently.

* Code Search -- how did I forget this awesome tool? What an invaluable, educational, and fun tool that was.

* Google Video -- somewhat redundant with YouTube, but I always felt Video had a place in that it seemed to be much more liberal than YT and also allowed larger uploads.

* Google Desktop -- ok, this one did hurt. My primary use for it was to search my Outlook mail at work (f'g Outlook search is the worst I've ever seen in any product). Now I'm back to never being able to find an email...

* Google Notebook -- a very awesome online clipbook / personal wiki. I still miss it.

* GOOG-411 -- I still miss this service too. Going online is just too slow and tedious, not to mention impossible and/or illegal when you're driving (whereas hitting a speeddial for GOOG-411 was quick and easy). And no, the "voice search" on my phone is not the same, not even close.

* Google Health -- this was a very neat service that I think was ahead of its time, and I didn't use it much (as I didn't have many health issues at the time), but as I age, I'm wishing more & more I had a centralized location to store my medical history on my terms.

* Google Dictionary -- another tool I used on a daily basis. At least there's an official extension[1] that I can use in its place that is functionally equivalent (for my uses); just turn off the pop-ups and invoke it manually from the button.

Pretty scary how many of my tools and services that I came to rely on were shuttered; however, I think the powering down of Reader will impact me the most.

1. https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/google-dictionary-...

Not just free ones - 37signals has closed down a few things they could have sold. Sure, they'll let you continue to pay them to use their now-unsupported waste in some cases (BackPackIt), but I presume that will end too.

Ugh. I was living in fear of this happening for the past 3 years.

I will never trust Google again.

Apparently the only Google service I don't have a good alternative for is Google Books (for search; kindle, torrented bookwarez, and scribd works fine for the raw PDFs)

> I will never trust Google again.

What other free hosted service provider deserves your "trust" that it will never, ever go away, and which provides facilities for exporting all your data in a nice way (a feature which will likely be accessible long into the future)?

I'm just as irritated as you are, but given that they've provided notice and good backup/takeout options, I don't see a betrayal of trust anywhere.

I didn't use Google Reader because it was free, I used it because it was 1) good and 2) the back-end to essentially every other RSS-based service I used. So they're not competing with "free", they're competing with everything.

I learned this lesson when I made the mistake of Google Voice (which was free for some aspects).

I concur with this sentiment. It is good enough to pay for in my point of view. Google simply made the choice of wanting to monetize on their current user group. It makes me wonder if they'll open source it so that others can self-host it.

I'm very disappointed by this. I use Reader to manage all my RSS feeds. I check Reeder on my phone more than I use any other app.

It just goes to show, if you're using Google software that has no advertising and isn't used to sell advertising, it could end any day, and it probably will some day.

I'll be purchasing a Feedafever license, which also happens to work with Reeder. http://www.feedafever.com/

I'm considering buying Feedafever as well only because of Reeder integration. I think this just shows that any service can and most likely will just shut down, and we have to be ready to move to the next best alternative. Reeder is a great app and I enjoy using it because it's elegant. I recommend it and after seeing Newsblur mentioned here I wonder if Reeder can integrate with Newsblur (Newsblur is down so I'm assuming it doesn't already have a good mobile interface).

Per the @reederapp Twitter feed, "Dont worry, Reeder wont die with Google Reader."


I'm looking at FaF but not seeing how this works with Reeder?

Reeder on the iPhone syncs with Fever, but neither the Mac nor iPad versions of Reeder do.

Sunstroke (https://goneeast.com/sunstroke/) is a better Fever-specific client for the iPhone, I think... but it doesn't have either an iPad or a Mac version. On the Mac you can use Fever's web interface but on the iPad you're pretty much out of luck, as there are no native clients and trying to use the web interface there is crazy-making. (Actually, the web interface is a little crazy-making in any web browser. It's just a lot crazy-making on the iPad.)

Wow. I mostly use Reeder on my phone, but it hadn't even crossed my mind that the iPad and OS X versions possibly wouldn't have Fever support.

The author should really make that a priority, he has 2,5 months to make it happen.

It's true, Fever is an Account type for Reeder.


Ah, but just for the iPhone client, which is the only one I don't use (as I have an Android phone).

This is a sad news, one of my favourite RSS reader is closing. Google Reader is likely the site I browse the most, and I always have one tab open on it. Also, my phone sync with RSS with it.

I guess it's time to start searching for a new RSS reader. Too bad that I already did it a while ago, and every time I went back to Google Reader.

The biggest problem for me with other feed reader is that they try to add too many features to the simple format that RSS is. No, I don't care about "hot news", and I don't care about "suggested stories", I just want to read the feed I've added to it. My brain is good enough to skim through that list by just reading the title.

And most other reader lack integration with a mobile platform (Android/iOS/WP). Yes, sometimes they have a mobile client, but usually not nearly good enough as 3rd party clients.

Hopefully they'll change their mind, but I doubt it. Time to force myself. Sigh.

Try Tiny Tiny RSS. It's pretty light, just a list of folders/feeds on a left pane and the items on the right. I've switched from GReader a few months ago and it's working pretty well.

I don't know if there are any 3rd party clients, though. I know it has a mobile UI, but it's web, not native.

Thanks, I looked into it some times ago. Liked it, but didn't bother to switch since Google Reader was working so nicely for me.

I know it has a mobile app for android, but it always seemed sub-par to gReader or Press for me.

I've been using "RSS Feed Reader" Google plugin, which was the first thing I came across. This thread is a nice place for seeing other options.

If an API or service is really valuable, Google shutting their version down shouldn't be too bad. Other people can try to make some money offering a replacement.

I have, over the years, experimented with all of the RSS reader alternatives and found them to be lacking. Especially in handling the volume of feeds I subscribe to (I subscribe to thousands of feeds, see it as a stream to dip into, not zealously sop up every item, and browse through).

People have said repeatedly that RSS is dead, and that's apparently true, but I've been wondering for a few years now what has replaced it? It's not like social networks provide the same kind of service, really.

So is getting updates from people and projects you care about really such a niche thing? Have I missed some other huge channel that supersedes RSS? Or are we about to actually lose something profound here?

Kudos to Newsblur, which I never heard of before today. I'd like to sign up for a paying membership, but it seems like this is exactly what everyone else is doing, so servers are dead...

I feel exactly the same way: what the hell is replacing RSS feeds? I hate keeping up with "live" feeds like twitter.

Protip: when people like that say "RSS is dead", what they mean is "unfashionable".

I thought that was self-evident. Unfashionable is the first step in a trend that ends with "dead and abandoned".

As an aside: I implore you not to say things like "protip" here. It comes off as immature and condescending if not outright hostile. I realize it's a quick and snappy way to get upvotes from like-minded users but it's really that kind of phrase which prompts people to complain about redditization or 4chanization when they refer to the declining post quality of HN.

> So is getting updates from people and projects you care about really such a niche thing?

My guess is that it is. Anecdotally, I would guess that only my programmer or tech industry friends and me seriously care about getting updates from projects, or from people they don't know socially IRL. I would guess that my non-programmer friends want social updates from people, which social networks do provide, and they are somewhat interested in what the rest of the world is talking about, but just as a form of entertainment, so there's no need to group all the updates together because it's just as fun to check each individual site every now and then.

I guess there is a crowd of political news buffs too, people who would want comprehensive coverage of various takes on various recent events, but I don't know any personally (who aren't also programmers). If you don't care about multiple points of view then reading one or two newspapers or magazines is sufficient and there's no need for a feed reader.

There's also journalists and PR people whose job involves keeping up with zillions of updates.

And podcasting.

So, my guess is, yes, it's just a niche: programmers, a small subset of news buffs, media professionals, and podcasting.

Looking at the bright side, it doesn't matter to me if most websites drop RSS as long as the ones most relevant to my niche continue to use it; so if RSS becomes forgotten about by most people but is still used by websites that target programmers and by news websites, that's enough for me.

From the people I know who aren't in the tech industry who used reader intensively: a writer (for research), community website business owner (for providing content and keeping up), marketing business owner (for keeping track of industry developments).

I used it throughout the day and run all my CPD and almost all my non social media based marketing through it.

Currently looking at Feedly and I have 6 posts in my Saved in 1 screen shot instead of 17 with Reader. Working my way through the alternatives and on hour 8 so far. Grrrr.

It isn't niche in the same way as GMail isn't, or Apps.

As someone who used to use RSS feeds and doesn't any more, I've replaced it with a mixture of: checking websites for stuff that updates frequently like news, e-mail subscriptions for infrequent but important updates, and twitter (or similar) subscriptions for stuff that I can afford to miss.

Why not RSS? Formatting was often not quite right - if I wanted to read something, I often ended up clicking through to the original site anyway. And I didn't like the e-mail style expectation that I would read everything, or at least mark it as read (which felt like admitting defeat). It just began to feel like a chore. When I log in to twitter, it doesn't tell me that I have 1439 unread tweets.

For the first issue, you might check out newsblur. Basically solves the clicking through to the original issue perfectly.

The second I completely agree with you on. Even these cool readers that prioritize stuff you're most likely to read, by necessity, keep track of what's read and unread, and I get exactly that same itch that I need to stay on top of everything. It's completely artificial and almost ridiculous, but there it is. And I can't imagine how a reader could solve that problem without creating the even worse worry of missing things. (Which ironically evaporates when you don't use a reader and therefore no longer expect not to miss anything.)

Perhaps there is a novel solution there though, waiting to be discovered.

I think in many ways the solution was already discovered: don't create the expectation that the user will read everything. When they log on, show them the most recent or most significant events, and provide a way to find older events if they want. Twitter, Facebook, plenty of news sites, aggregators like HN & reddit, all hit on more or less this.

Technically, there's no reason it couldn't be done with RSS feeds. But the language of 'subscribing' encouraged thinking about RSS feeds in a different way.

This is what happens in Feedly's "Today" view. It (apparently) uses signals from social media to pick out the most popular articles in your folders and only shows those.

These web companies prove over and over again that it's not possible to trust them with your data. What would stop Google from killing your gmail or docs when they don't see it as valuable anymore?

The worst part is how the big guys kill all competition with their free products leaving few alternatives for users.

You can get all your Gmail data over standard IMAP. If you don't take advantage that to make personal backups, you are a fool.

True, but that's not too bad.

The real pain comes when your email address is no longer valid. You have to hunt down everyone you've ever communicated with to give them a new one. A lot of older, and more casual, contacts will be unable to reach you.

Any geek who relies on a domain name that belongs to someone else for their give-out-to-people, permanent email address needs to have his or her membership card revoked. Even if it's a domain that's owned by Google. Get a domain name.

I have several.

I was talking about the 99.999% of the human race that doesn't frequent HN. If they buy a domain name with email when Google announces that GMail is sunsetting, it's already too late. Old/casual acquaintances, friends of friends, etc. will only have their gmail.com address.

In a way that might be good. They would get in touch with all of those friends and relatives via 'analog' media like phone, a visit or a get-together :-)

Jokes aside, that would be horrible. I've a domain with GApps but I think my chat is still stuck there. Any ideas how can I break free and still able to chat with my friends(Gmail, Fb and some Yahoo) and have chat transcripts somewhere. Anyone?

Out of curiosity, what domain name should people choose, one based on their full name? If so, what happens when it has been already taken?

I have a really common name - it was taken in all permutations of domains for years. So I jumped on it when the .eu domain names came out, and I've happily used that for a long time now. See what you can find in a more "obscure" TLD.

You take something else?

Tomjen isn't my name, but it is close enough.

Gmail supports mail from your own domain through apps for business (which used to have a free tier) or through using gmail as a POP/IMAP/SMTP client.

Is there software that connects over IMAP and archives all your mail into one file? Not an email client.

Archivemail will do exactly that:


I use offlineimap on one machine to sync my Google accounts via IMAP (one "master" directory with one directory under that for each account). I then tar up that "master" directory, bzip2 it, and move it to another folder for safekeeping.

My Mac app, CloudPull, will do exactly that. It will also back up Google Reader, Google Calendar, Google Contacts, and Google Drive. http://www.goldenhillsoftware.com/cloudpull/

I use gmvault: http://gmvault.org/

It stores the mail in a folder tree rather than a single file, but that's fine by me. It's open source & cross platform.

I wasn't much of a Google Reader user, but it certainly does feel like this retirement might undermine some of their "trust the cloud" efforts. In the old days products getting killed only meant that no more updates are coming.

You can't just let products sit around and fester. Even if you're not building new features, you have to support browser updates and patch security holes, and the latter in particular means you have to keep around folks familiar with the details of the entire stack. As services age and folks move on to new jobs, that gets increasingly expensive to maintain as you have to train new maintainers.

I have been thinking about this for sometime now and think there is a startup idea there. If someone can promise to give you a email address on their domain, but with the caveat that it will never be revoked come what may, I think lot of people will be willing to use the mail. Bonus, if company promises to hand over the data/email address to your descendants after your death.

Of course, somehow, spam needs to be tackled.

> What would stop Google from killing your gmail or docs when they don't see it as valuable anymore?

Unfortunately, nothing. However Google makes it really easy to export this data.

F^&@ D^&@ IT! ^%&( ()&@& @&!^$&!!!!!

Of ALL the things they would shut-down, they have to kill Reader!?? Nooooooooooooo!! Aaargggghhhh....

Oh well, guess it's back to RSSOwl[1]. Maybe this will even motivate me to get involved in hacking on RSSOwl a bit and help those guys out.

This will probably also serve as the impetus for me to start adding some Reader like features to Neddick[2]. That was always sort of in the back of my mind, so why not go ahead and jump on it?

[1]: http://rssowl.org/

[2]: https://github.com/Fogbeam/Neddick

I switched to RSSowl quite a while ago and didn't find myself longing back to Google Reader once. It does everything I'd want, it's just not that pretty of an application.

My biggest gripe with RSSOwl was that it was that it had some performance issues, especially if you had a lot of feeds. And using Google Reader eliminated the need to synchronize my list of feeds between multiple RSSOwl instance (like, say, my personal laptop and my company laptop).

But the first issue may be mitigated by hardware improvements since the last time I was using RSSOwl regularly, and I have some ideas around the second issue.

Mixed emotions.

I remember at the end of college and right after (I graduated in 2008), many of my close friends were on GReader and we would share and communicate directly through it about interesting things we were reading. It was an awesome way to interact, and nothing has replaced it for my group and me. Google's implicit (although I could be reading their intentions incorrectly) strategy of trying to route that interaction through GPlus did not work for us. Too much overhead and it never materialized. Now we just use email, which is fine. So on the whole it's a type of social interaction that has simply gone. It's a shame, because I think that Google could have done something with this. But they are just one company and the number of innovative things they're doing is really impressive.

Maybe this will clear the way for a competitor that replaces the social interaction component and innovates on it. I'd be a user for sure.

I'd note that Readertron (readertron.com) was built by a guy who was frustrated when Google nerfed the sharing among friends feature.

MIght want to give it a shot.


> You need to sign in or sign up before continuing.

Not even a description of what it is or why I want to give them my information.

Sorry, but /close

I am interested in Google Reader replacements, but that site has zero information for me before asking me for my email and to sign up..


It actually looks pretty good, I was disappointed that there weren't any evangelists listing it in the other threads.

I signed up in two seconds by using a mailinator address. It looks like an exact clone + sharing/contacts. On revisiting though, the XML import failed. Too bad.

I use Reader's "star" functionality to keep track of stuff that I want to refer back to later. And, AFAICT, you can't easily export your star history. You can export your subscriptions, but not the stars.

The only approach that I've seen to exporting stars is to use the fact that Reader will create a feed of just your starred items. Then you can view that feed in some other reader and manually mark each one there (ugh).

Edit: Oh, and the read/not read history is, AFAICT, also not exportable. And I do use this as well.

Stars are, in fact, exportable. The "Google Takeout" zip archive for Reader includes a file called starred.json, containing a list of your starred items in a JSON format that, as far as I know, nothing else reads. If whatever reader you switch to can import marked items, you can probably work up a script to convert Google's format to whatever the new reader uses.

Thanks! The last time I checked was when they turned my google-account-with-an-apps-domain-email-address into an actual google apps account, and I had to move my Reader data.

Feedly will sync over all your starred items and put them into Saved.

Oh god. I have around 800 starred items dating back to 2008 in greader. Fuck me.

Hi HN, my co-founder and I have been working on a Google Reader clone in the last few weeks, we're not quite ready to launch, but would love to get feedback as soon as we've opened up our beta:


We promise to have all the basics of Google Reader covered, including importing your feed data (or as much as possible through the API).

Of course, if you're looking for something to move to immediately, NewsBlur is an awesome product :)

While the product has a loyal following, over the years usage has declined.

That will happen if you stop developing it and ignore requests for new features. Conesus has done a good job with Newsblur and I'll try going back to that, but I really wanted to have Gmail-style filtering of my RSS feeds in Google Reader, to to mention being able to maintain my sharing/tracking data within the Google ecosystem.

This is a major failure on Google's part. Complaining about a declining user base when the product was left to stagnate amounts to blaming the users for the company's lack of vision. Why Google would want to abandon this extremely rich source of behavorial data and trend emergence is beyond me; it suggests a loss of direction, for which short-term reactivity is no substitute. Put another way, you can't lead the herd by following it faster. I am shocked.

As I say, I've used Newsblur before and thought it OK - at the time I just somewhat preferred Reader's cosmetics. So the above is not just a reaction to the necessity to switch platforms.

So I love Google Reader, been using it from the very beginning.

I love offline clients, quite often I'm stuck in a remote location where 3G has yet to penetrate so I like to have a couple of hundred items to read which will sync when I reach connectivity again.

I need the RSS service to track what I've read across multiple devices and have the client support offline usage. Any recommendations?

This is the primary reason I use Google Reader too. I don't use the web interface at all, I just use it to keep track of everything so I can sync with it when I reconnect later, long after a number of items have disappeared forever from the official RSS feeds of active sites.

Bummer. I imagine there will be a few decent alternatives, but if the biggest game in RSS reader town is shutting down, how long will websites continue to provide and expose RSS feeds to the public?

What other syndication mechanism works, is cross platform, portable, provides rich media, and is open?

None that I know of. But the question remains is whether websites will want to provide a syndication mechanism similar to RSS. Google apparently thinks that it isn't worth maintaining and they are just the ones aggregating the feeds. RSS feeds won't die and will definitely be used in various niches such as podcasting. But if RSS feeds are losing popularity as Google claims, I am worried about their future. Combined with the fact they are probably harder to monetize, I would not be surprised if their days are numbered on most common websites. And that sucks, cause RSS readers always felt like using a cheat code on the internet and I don't find anything that replaces it to my satisfaction.

Is it the biggest though? I get the impression many people use a desktop app for RSS feeds (I certainly do).

Would be interesting to see a marketshare breakdown.

Sample size of one, but Google Reader accounted for 6,168 of my 7,698 RSS subscribers yesterday (according to the probably-also-on-the-chopping-block FeedBurner).

I'll take the blame for this.

I use Google Reader heavily, but I never go to the web pages. I have native apps on my desktop and mobile devices and just use Reader to keep my subscriptions synced.

No ad views, no service.

If that was a problem, they should've offered paid subscriptions. I refuse to see ads, but I'll happily pay for the privilege.

I find the Google Reader web interface to be dreadful and ugly, so I never go there except to manage my RSS feeds. Third party devs have created newsreader apps so much better than Google did, it's not even funny.

If that was a problem, they should've offered paid subscriptions.

Yeah, but they don't want us as customers, they want to sell us as Soylent Green out the back door.

With this news, the only remaining things I'll use Google for are search, GMail, and some libraries like Guice & Guava.

That's more than me.. without iGoogle and Reader, I don't see much use in them for search now.

I have plenty of feeds that include ads. Reader shows all images and links that are part of the feed body so not going to the site should not be a problem.

If an ad supported feed provider fails to add ads to their feed they just do not understand the medium. One of the core ideas in RSS is to avoid visiting all the subscribed sites!

They still get a lot of data exhaust.

They could compete with a solid mobile app / desktop app and monetize that. Lots of ways to leverage it against Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn. All those services are building freaking news aggregators, and Google is killing theirs which is maybe the best and most useful?

It seems really lame and evil.

Indeed. I regularly use it via the Press app on Android, and visit the actual site only to manage the subscriptions.

The service itself at that level is comparatively straightforward. Hopefully someone (twentyfivesquares?) will step up and offer a replacement. I'd be willing to pay.

If it was an issue of ad views all they'd have to do is add an ad bar at the top ala gmail.

I think at that point, content creators being aggregated by Google--who are already have a fairly stressful relationship with Google--might accumulate too much ammunition to use against them (as then Google would be directly profiting from aggregating and redistributing content from third-parties in a modified presentation).

same. is there any alternative for us?

I depend on Google Reader for keeping up with Hacker News. I'm going to be in a world of hurt now. I use iReadG on the iPhone to browse headings and then star the Hacker News posts I want to read later when I get back to the computer.

iReadG has been great because it will download all the rss feed data and allow me to browser it and star items without an Internet connection which is great for those times on the road when there is no signal. I have no idea what I'll be able to use to replicate this functionality now that Google Reader is going down.

Very very sad.

Does anyone know of an extraction tool to pull down all your starred items (in addition to feeds) into some semi-structured format -- even just a big, single HTML file?

I've got YEARS of starred items "saved" in Reader. I use it everyday to stay abreast of news (1000+ items / day). Between Google Reader and iGoogle... Google has deprecated most of the tools I use on a regular basis. This makes me seriously question using Gmail and Apps for Business.

EDIT: Just RTFM'd. Looks like Google TakeOut will let me export most of the stuff I care about. Still, this sucks. I'll probably just keep using it and hope (like iGoogle) the deprecation date gets pushed back. Otherwise... productivity boon due to lack of RSS feeds.

Also.... Feedburner users should see the writing on the wall!

Perhaps the "decline in usage" had something to do with the thoughtless redesign they implemented.

It might have been in the decline before that point, but I did stop using it because of the redesign hurting my eyes and being less of a pleasure to interact with. It's really a shame because it was a service a lot of people enjoyed. There was no need to force one look on every user.

I can't imagine the likely demographic profile of Google Reader users was worthless to a company that sells targeted ads as well.

Why don't they just fucking ask me to pay for it? God damnit.

Say it ain't so. I use this everyday at work on my text only internet browser.

This is the first internet product shutdown I've ever been affected by.

Maybe I don't need to spend so much time reading up on random news. Who knows, it might be good for me.

But I will miss you.

If you're text only already, check out newsbeuter.

I'm really sad to see it go, it's the one service I use more than anything else. Probably more than email.

Well, this is truly the apocalypse. To me, Google Reader IS the internet.....(It's how I got to this Hacker News post). Not pleased at all.

bastards. they never seem to realize how much they damage our trust with these actions. it effects all of their future products. I don't trust them anymore.

anyway feedly has a replacement coming soon:


> We have been working on a project called Normandy which is a feedly clone of the Google Reader API – running on Google App Engine. When Google Reader shuts down, feedly will seamlessly transition to the Normandy back end. So if you are a Google Reader user and using feedly, you are covered: the transition will be seamless.

> If you are a Google Reader, give feedly a try before July 1st, and you will be able to migrate seamlesly

"a feedly clone of the Google Reader API – running on Google App Engine"

So it will also die when Google shuts down App Engine? :)

I've made the switch to feedly as well, and so far I must say it has been a pleasant experience. Everything was set-up and imported in a few clicks, and the general usage experience is also pretty smooth. I got rid of the useless default interface, replaced it by compact lists. I can say I'm happy with the state of things for now.

+1 on feedly. my transition from GR to Feedly was painless and they have a great interface to boot. Ive tried others like rssminer, theoldreader and newsblur, and didnt like it. I prefer getting summaries/pictures for me to make a decision to click a link or not and not just a plain itemized list.

It's not a replacement, it's just the back-end that is getting replaced. Feedly will just change its back-end to Normandy instead of Google Reader.

Their site is getting crushed right now. I can't even login.

http://www.feedly.com/ perfectly works right now. With four clicks you find all your feed groups again you had in Google Reader and the User Interface is even nicer...

I think the most important feature for any alternative is the import of the Google Reader's feeds and structure including all tags!

Sad, sad news. I get (I think) 300 items/day on my Google Reader and I always get to "inbox zero" - a bit of OCD maybe. It is my most visited URL ever and I've used it every day, several times a day, since 2006. Of course I would even pay a fair amount of money for it, given the time I've spent on it, but Google's not interested. I am currently trying The Old Reader and while the interface is nice (well... generic Bootstrap, which is pleasant, and better than newsblur) it's really slow with my amount of feeds. Sigh...

Well done, it affects me a lot, it was one of two services I'm totally dependant from Google. The second one is Gmail, if I wasn't so lazy I would try to do something about it too, I'm not confortable with my mails stored at Google / in the US anymore.

One not mentioned yet is http://selfoss.aditu.de/

It is an open source self hosted rss reader with a responsive skin. I'll be migrating tonight nad since it is open source I can contribute when I run into issues!

Okay. So I need a replacement website that also has an Android app. And preferably a desktop app (or syncs with FeedDemon).

Any suggestions?

Second that. Feedemon has been my default client for years. Totally upset with Google's doing here.

I won't bitch about this decision, because after all I got more than my money's worth. I do wonder if the change doesn't weaken the whole Google "Suite" though. Google (until quite recently anyway) seems to be focusing a great deal on G+. The vast majority of my G+ posts come from Reader; I doubt I'll be posting to G+ in future. I know G+ can live without me, but as far as I can tell the only value in G+ comes from its integration with the rest of the "Suite". If Facebook or Amazon had been in this situation, instead of killing Reader, they would have focused it more and more on feeding, promoting, and otherwise bolstering their other services, probably to the detriment of actually reading RSS. Probably to the point where some, but not all users would have become disgusted and quit using Reader anyway. Google doesn't do that sort of thing, which I guess is to its credit.

I'm here with Alan Noble who runs engineering at Google Australia and ran the Google Reader project until 18 months ago. They looked at open sourcing it but it was too much effort to do so because it's tied to closely to Google infrastructure. Basically it's been culled due to long term declining use.

I have thousands of websites inside Google Reader which serves me as a personal sub-internet. With archive and quick search within feeds was so much valuable for me. It was the only service of Google that i use second only to Gmail.

I think they made a quick short headed cost analysis in this, that archive and search functionality needs server power. Actual userbase does not provide enough money juice to balance.

Now, let the alternatives pour in.

Exactly that.

My worst fear: Just couldn't find any service yet that provides this search capability in your very private hand-selected little back-catalog of the internet back to 2007 and earlier. Including sites that are no longer available in the wild. Nobody else will be able to provide that without access to the Google Reader Servers.

Hope this current uproar gets enough traction to find a solution to save this searchable and indexed archive of the internet/blogosphere somewhere accessible for everyone.

There is a whole app ecosystem built around Google Reader. This is going to be ugly.

I actually it daily but only through apps like Reeder.

Yeah, I'm far more worried about the fact that pretty much all the iOS rss readers use Google Reader as a backend.

I'm going to be fubar for keeping different apps across devices all in sync...

I do hope this is a blessing in disguise!

Google killed with their free Reader the biggest part of the market around RSS. Switching off Reader opens up this market which should be still large enough for a few indies to find their niche. Maybe even reinvigorating RSS while doing so.

This is my most used Google service after the search and mail (it's probably on par with Youtube). Shame to see it go! I can't see how it was hurting them so much with users declining. Surely the more time staring at the Google website header the better?

Still he best way to read content on the web, really sad to see it go.

Adding on to this:

What he hell do I do with my starred items now, it's literally the best collection of content I have curated in my life and I reference it all the time.

edit: petition to keep it open http://www.change.org/petitions/google-please-don-t-kill-goo...

You can export your Google Reader data -- all your starred items are stored in a json file.

It doesn't pass unread items though.

Another option is to get pocket for chrome which adds an icon to google reader items and thereby allowing you to save your starred items to pocket.

This petition has 10x the number of signatures


The petition will not help.

Google already killed reader in their hearths when they made the g+ update. Instead of neglecting it for years to come they did the right thing and let it go for good.

Wondering this too. I'd like to import my folders and starred items to another reader. Anyone a reader that can do this?

Literally my favorite thing on the internet. Revolutionized how I consume information. I found out about this via Google Reader!

Google has fallen very far.

I'm stunned. I was depending on this service to document my life and what I know. I simply can't fathom that they are going to shut it off. If this happens I'm going to move everything I have on google off of it. I put too much trust in them for them to pull this crap. This is an evil move. It exudes evil. It damages my productivity and steals my time. Ughhhh.

I literally said "Awwww, whaaaat?".

http://tt-rss.org as a replacement seems the winner for me so far.

NewsBlur may have a solution for end users but there seems to be no recourse for the huge impact this has to the dev community.

With Google Reader as an API devs had a way to get historical data on practically any RSS feed going back many years. That ability will be lost/gone forever. Even if Google sunsets the reader app, I wish they'd keep this data source open. Its hugely valuable and I don't think there is any alternative to it.

I think that having cached all this data on their server over the years of their own free will, they've put themselves to be in a position where they have a somewhat fiduciary responsibility of keeping this data alive and open.


Any new application starts in a state of tabula rasa -- all history, prior to some point in 2013 (or late 2012) will not be accessible, considering that a typical site/blog feed contains only 10 to a few dozen most recent items. Presently, in Google Reader, I can click on a feed and flip through items all the way back to 2005 (for those sites with that long of a history).

I know that Google Reader search has been flaky as the product has languished, but it still the most powerful way to search a select group you sites you care about (incidentally, the Google Labs custom search engine product is on life support too, if not set to sunset soon) and search for a topical phrase of interest and get a set of results with that matching text.

This is affecting me similarly to the announcement of Yahoo killing Delicious. Both Delicious and Google reader became for me definitions of their services. As a result of this all alternatives do not feel right (Even if they're technically more full featured).

I have swapped Delicious with Diigo (After shopping around many alternatives). I really hope the process of replacing Google reader isn't as long or as painful as that was.

The ending of Delicious and Google Reader is the end of an era of my use of the Internet. I wonder if it's a function of my age that I now see that as a sad and worrying development rather than an opportunity to be grasped.

While I am an avid Google Reader user, I think this is good news. Their product has stagnated over the past few years, yet few competitors emerged. Hopefully this creates a void that a better service or set of services can fill.

Sadly most of the services fill a different niche. Feedly and so on are all magazines but not what I consider real RSS readers. I've read though this Thread, the Reddit threads and through some "Reader Alternatives" articles. The only things similar seem to be The Old Reader and Newsblur.

Feedly has a very familiar view for Reader users: http://blog.feedly.com/2013/03/14/tips-for-google-reader-use...

I've been using that view since the Reader announcement prompted me to give Feedly a second look. Works perfectly.

I can use another RSS Reader (and probably won't like it nearly as much as Google Reader), but I worry that the Google Reader audience is so big, and that so many will likely not bother finding another worthy RSS aggregator, that some blogs who get most of their traffic from GR users will throw in the towel when their readership declines.

I've used it every day for years... Anyone run an instance of http://www.feedafever.com? How is it?

I've been using this on and off for the past few months. Frankly, I prefer Google Reader to Fever, but I strongly prefer Fever to any of the other feed readers I've tried. I especially like that I can count on the server staying up and the service not shutting down.

I use Fever full time. It's great, apart from the lack of native apps. That's the only thing that makes me resent it sometime. Their claims are true, too, it really does help cut back the noise and stops you reading the same story over and over. It's kind of nice to know that I own it, too, so nobody can just take it away.

Unless you mean 'native app made by Fever', Reeder and Sunstroke [2] are good iOS apps with Fever support.

[1] https://itunes.apple.com/ca/app/reeder/id325502379

[2] https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/sunstroke/id488564806

Been running Fever exclusively for last 3 months when I heard whispers of Google Reader heading for the chopping block. I don't "get" the 'kindle/sparks/etc' lingo it uses, but as a basic Reader replacement AND self-hosted option, i love it. It has keyboard shortcuts and nearly all the other features you'd want.

I really like Fever. It imports and exports OPML, so it was easy move from NetNewsWire to Fever and back to other feed apps and backups. The Fever's mobile view works very nicely. Easy to install and it automatically updates itself.

I'd really love to be able to play with this before I drop $30 on it. It's not an unsubstantial amount of money to drop on a self-hosted webapp.

I know Shaun has a great reputation, and I've played his games, but this is exactly how I feel. Wish I could play with it a little bit before I press that "Buy" button.

I'm seriously digging Feedly right now. Took 12 seconds to get into it and everything just makes sense. I wish I had found this ages ago.

No need to backup your feeds, it uses your google account for now.

Feedly posted this to their blog today:


Transitioning from Google Reader to feedly

Google Reader Posted on March 14, 2013 by @feedly

Google announced today that they will be shutting down Google Reader. This is something we have been expecting from some time: We have been working on a project called Normandy which is a clone of the Google Reader API – running on Google App Engine. When Google Reader shuts down, feedly will seamlessly transition to the Normandie back end. So if you are a Google Reader user and using feedly, you are covered.

Tangent: How on earth do product blogs not have a link to their product page? Nowhere is there a link to feedly.com in their header or sidebar, I have to manually edit the URL. Ridiculous.

Seems like the Chrome App can access:

* Your data on all websites * Your tabs and browsing activity

I'm not very comfortable with that. It also seems very unnecessary for an RSS reader.

It doesn't give an answer that is acceptable. That's no way an explanation. That's an excuse.

Feedly depends on Google Reader for now, IIRC.

edit: They're fixing it! http://blog.feedly.com/2013/03/14/google-reader/

There's tt-rss [1] if you want to host it yourself.

[1] http://tt-rss.org/

I'm glad I made the decision to host my own feed reader years ago. Mine's based on an old version of tt-rss, actually (I diverged from the codebase back in '05 when I felt like the author didn't really want any of my contributions).

Edit: It looks like I'm also happy that I chose to host my own CalDAV server, too.

Edit 2: @koenigdavidmj - Apparently I can't reply that deeply. DAViCal is the CalDAV server I'm using (http://www.davical.org/). My wife and I sync our iPhones to it and it's been a godsend for my personal organization. (Now if I could just find a decent replacement for Mozilla Sunbird...)

Are they really shutting down the CalDAV interface to Google Calendar? (I'm not sure what the "API" bit means, or the "whitelisted".)

As of now, CalDAV is Google's recommended way for syncing with iOS devices http://support.google.com/calendar/bin/answer.py?hl=en&a...

This is my concern too. I was under the impression that iCal also used CalDAV to sync. Why shut it down?

It's worse than that. On iOS Google have just shut down exchange support (for new users), which was how I was syncing calendars up until now. If they pull caldav support as well, there will be no syncing mechanism available to iOS users, unless I'm missing something.

What CalDAV server do you use?

excellent! thanks for the tip

I wonder if it's just a Google Reader issue or RSS are fading out. I'm not a huge RSS user but I would be very concerned by RSS decline, it was one of the rare inter-operation standard that was very positive, easy, clean, and helped a lot programmers to put things together.

It's bugged me when I've seen people say that Twitter replaces RSS. In my eyes, RSS is for feeds where you actually care about each item and the decision whether or not to read it. Twitter is catered towards dipping in and out, with items constantly slipping through the net.

The real winner here might be Prismatic. They already do awesome machine learning based discovery. If they'd add an RSS reader (not just RSS feeds into their discovery machine) they'll get every one of millions of users moving off Google Reader.

Due Disclosure: Though I have no official connection to Prismatic, founder Bradford Cross is a friend and I am biased to Prismatic. It is awesome. Try it at http://getprismatic.com/

While I like prismatic a lot, it builds on idea of a filtering bubble that you put yourself into. So it's better for finding something that you'll be interested in and you already know that (since it's in your interests, and your friends quote on that), but it's absolutely orthogonal to rss reader.

I've never been a fan of giving away choice of what to read to automated systems. Of course some percent of suggested stuff is ok, but actually it all boils down to three components for me. Mostly I read what I want to read (interests). Then I'm interested to follow popular stuff (keeping up). Then I'm all right to take a peak at what a program suggests I could like (discovery).

If you want a light and simple reader with a similar UI, try Tiny Tiny RSS. It's self-hosted, so it won't stop working when it's no longer "profitable", and it has all the basic features (folders, keyboard navigation, etc) without clutter. I've been really happy with it since I switched from GReader, a few months ago.


Wow, very surprising. One of the few Google apps I access several times per day.

Edit: I think there's a 50/50 chance this decision gets reversed.

Edit: looks like http://feedly.com is going to get my vote for now.

Lessons for the week: It's not yours unless it's 1) On your machine [a], and 2) DRM free.


[a] As long as your machine remains "yours", i.e. free of the same restrictions.

I just exported my Greader profile into Akregator. Now to research if someone wrote an import of reader favorites JSON, or if I should just write the extension myself.

Basically every Reader-alternative site is getting its servers slammed tonight. This makes me wonder about Reader's "declining usage."

You don't see all the data...

I've started a Slant comparison page for Google Reader replacements, hopefully we can crowd source a good, feature-by-feature comparison of the replacement apps to help decide. http://slant.co/topics/what-is-the-best-alternative-to-googl...

I'd urge everyone to give Readertron (readertron.com) a try. It was built by programmer (and good friend of mine) who was frustrated when Google nerfed the ability to share among friends within Google Reader. It's a work in progress, but at least you can share articles among friends again.

He's also very responsive to requests for features.

uhg! tried it. after signing in I was presented with a "You are already subscribed to the following shared feeds." and two pages of random people I've never even heard about. I strongly advise against it.

Come on Microsoft, this is a good opportunity for you - Bing Reader. Make it happen.

Or Yahoo!? DDG? Anyone?

The Windows Live Mail app has a feed reader. I wonder how hard it would really be to add the functionality to the web-app version of outlook.com.

Reeder, my favorite iOS and Mac news app, that includes support for Fever (http://feedafever.com/), a news aggregation and evaluation service I’ve always wanted to try. If you are looking to leave Google Reader, this may be the combination you’re looking for.

Wow this one hurts. They took down another Google service I loved, Google Notebook (http://www.google.com/googlenotebook/faq.html). I have no idea why I loved it. It was just so easy to make lots of quick text documents without the fluff and it was fast. I used it despite the existence of Evernote and other online documentation services. I still haven't found a suitable replacement though OneNote comes real close.

I don't know what I'm going to do about this. I guess the reality is that social won and RSS is dead. Or at least social is much more monetizable.

I've tried so many other different RSS aggregators but kept coming back to Google Reader. It worked well, had minimal fluff, and was fast.

R.I.P. Google Reader

I spend more actual time in Reader than any other Google application including Gmail. This bites.

I'm open to alternatives, but I haven't seen any I could really latch on to.

It's unfair for Google to claim usage has been decreasing since it broke the social aspect of Greader (which was the part I loved the most) which I think is a major factor in declining usage. I definitely saw less content that my friends on Greader used to share. My usage of the product dropped after that, but it was still useful enough I wanted to keep using it. This is probably one of the most shameful episodes in google product history. I bet they're rationalizing away all the feedback from upset users too. They should at least let someone spin off the product into a startup. Most startups would die to have the user base of Google reader. Just because Google doesn't care about it, doesn't mean there is no market to be served.

I've been working on a replacement for a year now. It's open to the public. Get it while it's hot


Thank you!

I use Google Reader for one very simple reason - I'm already signed into Google. It's on my phone, it's on all my computers . I don't want to have to use yet another bloody website just to manage something as simple as an RSS feed. I like Reader because it as simple, it worked and it was everywhere I needed it. The fact that it's retiring just because people are not using it is a misconception - I've managed to get a fairly large number of people using Google Reader, none of which had ANY idea it existed before. As a few others have said in the thread, the "declined usage" is no fault of the product itself but through absolutely no promotion of it from Google.

This is going to be a huge pain for me. There was a decent infrastructure built on top of google reader (not only apps that let you log in and view your feeds on different devices). I constantly use ifttt to send starred articles to my evernote.

Since IFTTT can consume any RSS feed, you can just use any client that lets you export your starred articles as one, such as Tiny Tiny RSS.

I have a similar use case, where I want to automatically download chosen podcasts. I just created a "download" label, got an RSS feed link from my client and put it on a podcasting app. Now I just need to label the episodes I want to listen to on Tiny and they'll be automatically downloaded to my phone.

May I say, Aaeaarrghhhhhhhhh! This was ( I speak in the past tense, even though death does not happen until July 1st ) one of the few reliable guideposts about the internet.

Google reader,of the RSS readers, you were the best, reliable, unencumbered by partisanship, unflavored by ideology. You were the best. Too bad, I must say goodbye, too bad I must go to newsbeuter or some other webreader, too bad you must die.

Truly I hate google, I hate what Google has become, I love the web, I love what the web was supposed to be. I love RSS http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RSS and I will mourn you when you are gone.

I guess they couldn't monetize RSS. I would have taken an ad-supported version. Nobody would probably click the ads though.

You can easily monetize RSS, you can get some of the best information about a person about the content they consistently subscribe to. All their targeted advertising would have been all the better targeted at people if they intelligently used their subscription information.

I would be willing to pay. I wish they'd tried to gauge user willingness to pay even as an experiment.

Beware! This app is a gazillion times simpler than Google Reader.

I'm putting this out there in case anybody finds it useful. I made it years ago but never got around to promoting it. The idea was an online bookmarking app that tells you when the bookmarked pages have changed, and for technical reasons it eventually turned into a simple news feed reader.

It also supports drag and drop and for browsers with side bars (damn you Chrome!), it works... in the side bar.

I've moved onto other things but if you're really into it, get in touch and I'll try to move your data from Google Reader.


Damn. Reader was very useful for keeping up with academic journals and flagging articles for further consideration.

Are there any alternative sources of archival RSS feeds like those that Google Reader (unofficially) provides?

What's an archival RSS feed?

Greader will preserve its own history of a feed, including deleted items and feeds that go down, given someone on the Internet was accessing it, Google caches it.

It means when a website is taken offline, if you are subscribed to, say, a content RSS feed through them, you can still browse the history and content.

I just switched to Akregator, which will locally cache feeds (and you can configure it to do so permanantly) but it is a local copy. You can host your feeds via a feed host through it, so I imagine what I'm going to do is run Akregator off my server box, archive my feeds, and access it from my servers ip.

Oh, well, I've name-dropped it a few times already, but TTRSS stories every item in its database. I've used it to run some numbers on them.

The beauty of this aspect of google reader though is that they have archived every feed that anyone has read in the past 5+ years, and there's actually an API to retrieve that data as RSS/Atom.

Sounds like somebody should send out the signal to Archive Team and Jason Scott.

You can get an RSS file (well, Atom) for any feed that includes all posts going back to whenever google reader started following it. Normally if you get the RSS from the originating site it'll only have the latest 20 or so posts, and there isn't a standardized way to get the history.

Let me see how I can delicately sum up my feelings about this: "Google, you Bastard!"

I think they announced this while the news cycle is wall-to-wall New Pope Mania to cover up this appalling summery execution :)

Yet another example why I never built a service or app relying on any Google product, service or API.

This is going to be a problem. Reader is fairly important to me.

I'm dropping Google a note and offering to pay a subscription if they continue services. Probably won't make a dent, but worth a try.

Obligatory White House petition: http://wh.gov/oRoJ

I created a poll to keep track of the best alternative: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=5373538

Why are they shutting it down? I mean heaps of people must still use it. I bet a shit load of people use for Google Alerts as well, lots of businesses.

Far if it costed too much, i bet people would be happy to fork out $10 a year for it?

I've been using it daily for the past 4 years, to be honest nothing comes that close to it, and most likely the majority of people who use RSS readers use Google Reader.

Also now most of the iOS/Android apps are fucked now since they all use Google Reader.

Tldr; Google are dongies.

> Why are they shutting it down?

Because they would rather that you use Google+. The writing was on the wall when they started disabling features a year or two ago.

How are you supposed to use RSS with G+? Wouldn't that be a mess?

G+ is already a mess, so wouldn't make much of a difference.

Sorry, I was unclear; I meant use G+ instead of RSS feeds.

But that wouldn't be up to me, that would be up the feed publishers to use G+ instead of RSS. :)

They should shut down Google search as well while there at it, and redirect it to Google+.

Don't give them ideas.

But the thing is that Google+ is wholly different experience. It's not about quickly consuming large amounts of information.

It's also about driving writers to Google+.

Alright Google, I'll make a deal with you:

Keep Reader alive and I'll CONSIDER using G+

Until then, I'm not going to touch you.

First word came out of my mouth looking at this in Google Reader of course is, FUCK!

i was especially interested in the history function of Google Reader. i could look up old items even if they were not starred, it was enough if they passed through Google Reader.

And there is no option to save this data. Or is there?

I use NetNewsWire (an iOS app) every day, and it interfaces with Google Reader very nicely. Very sad that Google has made this decision - I will have to look into the alternatives. Hopefully they are even better! :)

Edit/Update: I'm probably part of the problem. I never click ads - maybe they just had too many freeloaders like me? :) Weirdly, I also never block ads. I just don't click them.

I (and it seems a lot of others) will be sad to see reader go.

I presume this death announcement doesn't meet the criteria for a HN black banner though.

I'm a huge fan of Netvibes - been using it for several years now. It has a single feed based view like most other RSS readers, but in my opinion the newspaper view is where it shines. I can quickly skim several dozen feeds with the scroll of a mouse - it's great if you're the kind of person who likes to take in a lot of info at once.

I love Reader and hate that it's going away. A pox on Plus I say.

I wonder if bit by bit ending secondary products like this doesn't separate Google from its customers. Part of my reason for not using search services like Bing is that I'm tied to Google by their secondary products such as Reader. The end of Reader will loosen Google's hold on me. As will the end of iGoogle.

I used to use Google Reader. Feed count rose and rose to the point I stopped using it. For many many months I'm checking only LWN and HN sites manually for CS/IT-related stuff - I don't feel like I lost anything. So cannot really complain about losing Google Reader now, but I think that this decease decision is strange.

I may reevaluate feed idea when I see intelligent reader that will show me early the most interesting stories from my subscriptions and will do it with a style. Reading must be a pleasure, not pain. Typographically web is a horrible place, there is so much that can and should be improved. Feeds should be your better (i.e. correctly) looking versions of the texts you can find on the web.

Google Reader Plus extension improved a bit comfort of using GR, thanks to multi-column view for instance, but it wasn't enough to keep me using GR.

This is very sad. :-( That's like 3 hours of my day every day.

Google is betting on Google+ being the future platform for general content publishing and consumption, so RSS in general, and Google Reader in particular, are effectively competitors of Google+. I wouldn't be surprised if Blogger was shutdown (or subsumed by Google+) 5 years from now.

We think RSS is far from dead. We've built a free reader that lets you put your feeds into a magazine style, highly visual page: Kuratur.com

This isn't a traditional email-inbox-style feed reader. It's like Flipboard for your feeds, on the web.

In beta - feedback warmly welcomed.

Also, very interested in talking to RSS fanatics.

This is another reminder that if Google does a service for free, there is likely a business to be had in making a paid version, simply for the inevitable moment that they kill the free service. Think paid Google+, paid GMail, paid search engine maybe? You get the idea.

Is there a RSS reader which incorporates some ML learning algorithms to determine which articles I'd probably like, basing on what others (ones having similar taste) click? That was only thing that would make me abandon Google Reader if it weren't closing anyway.

I think newsblur supports some kind of training after looking at it today; not sure how effective it is.

I think we all saw this coming when G+ took over some of Reader's functionality.

I've been working on a news solution of my own, Scoopinion, since 2011. It's a discovery engine that ranks articles based on how closely they've been read. Users install a browser extension that lets them track their own reading (within a set of whitelisted sites). It's a little bit of quantified self for news. The data is used for recommendations and to help journalists in their work.

It's not a drop-in replacement for Reader since you don't get the full firehose of headlines from your feeds, only the most engaging stories.


This is such a sad news for lots of specialized website (including Google blogs!!!). For sure they will see some trafic impact. BTW, Google+ is too much time consuming per unit of information read, so I will never replace Reader by Plus.

This is a disaster for Google. Elites are mobile. The empire collapses after they leave.

HN deaded this when I tried to submit it: http://www.buzzfeed.com/robf4/googles-lost-social-network

I don't know why. It's a great eulogy for Reader, written in 2012.

I think buzzfeed gets automatically marked dead.

That's unfortunate. It has a lot of quality content mixed with the revenue-generating pop stuff.

whoa. big move. can we somehow petition against this? and maybe even move this off as an alternative open source, driven by community? Whack some ads on Google Reader and you might make money out of it Google... but don't remove this.

Well, I just exported my entire feed history to Akregator. It imported smoothly. I'm probably going to look into a qt 5.1 based port of it to Android if someone isn't already making it just so I can have my feeds on the go as well.

That is my biggest concern, I really like the UX of the mobile reader app for browsing blog entries.

This affects me in a huge way. I spend at least a couple of hours in Reader every day. I'd even be ok if they found a way to integrate Reader into Google+ in a more than just a superficial way and somehow and made it super social. They seem to be hellbent on making Google+ work.. so here's a perfect way to make me spend more time there! Make Google Authorship work with Greader then allow me to follow specific authors and get only their RSS feeds (instead of blanket following whole websites). Use G+ as a commenting system behind my RSS subscriptions, giving Disqus a run for its money. Ugh so many possibilities... :(

I would gladly pay for Google Reader. It is my most visited website. This is so sad.

what the fuck google? seriously, I'm really pissed with this.

really, how is one's reading habits not useful data for google? you're sitting on a pile of gold. it's a billion times more valuable than the useless google plus desert!

ok Pocket, it's time for you guys to add rss reading support

I saw NewsBlur when it first popped up on HN but never gave it thought since I thought Reader served my needs well enough. Amazing how that inertia melts away when the floor vanishes.

Now I just have to wait for its servers to stop melting.

use it daily. Would be nice if Google released details on this "decline in usage"

Agreed, and agreed.

Only word one suffices: Fuck!

Thankfully this will mean that the trend of news reader apps that consume Google feeds instead of the actual sources will end. Some of the current ones will die off, but maybe a few of the better will convert.

If anyone wants the direct export link instead of using takeout, this still works:


Here are some hand-picked, noteworthy alternatives: http://blog.feedity.com/2013/03/14/google-reader-alternative...

Can someone explain to me why no one is doing a direct, pixel for pixel clone of Google Reader? I mean, the thing is popular enough that any startup would die for its traffic. Not to mention its users absolutely love it. As Paul Bucheit said, it's better to have a small number of users who love your product than a large number that like it. And well, Greader has a large number of users who love it (bordering on fanatical about it). So why not do a blatant clone as a f* you to Google for nuking a product that its users are absolutely devoted to.

While not quite pixel to pixel oldreader seems to be quite close, they want to be close to the older UI which makes it even better in my eyes. They are sort of keeling over with the new load, but have scheduled an import, will see how it goes. Unfortunaately as of now they only import the subscriptions not he stars.

Not sure how they plan to support the service.

Just thought I would mention that you can use XPLR unsupervised machine learning API https://xplr.com/developers/ to build your own feed reader in the manner of https://xplr.com/products/illuminate/browser/ Though this probably applies more to RSS reader developers than end users. In a way, you can build your own little Prismatic-like app, tailored to your needs, or just play with AI and news :)

Seemed like this would eventually happen since Google stopped updating Reader (and its APIs) a few years ago

I've also been working on a similar news reader app called BlogRoll: http://blogrollapp.com

It can import your Google Reader feeds and has a tiled layout (which may not be everybody's cup of tea), but it works well for photo-focused sites like food and fashion blogs, and it handles other news sites and blogs quite well too.

Here's a screenshot of it: http://bit.ly/Yc1P9C

+1 on first Google service shutdown that impacts me. I use Reader daily.

If you haven't already used it, check out http://getprismatic.com/. It replaced Google Reader for me. (It also replaced HN for the most part).

I'm building an alternative (https://feedreader.co) and would like volunteers to test it. The focus is on reading (https://feedreader.co/arpith/labels/read should give you an idea) so it's much simpler than newsblur, etc, but the front end is built using a feed sync API (https://feedreader.co/api) which I think will be useful.

Instead of wasting your time creating petitions to keep Google Reader open, I suggest you make a petition to make Google Reader open source. Google is going to close Reader either way so at least we'd haven a self hosted good alternative.

Every alternative I've seen so far in this hole topic(yes, all of them, I've tested all of them) is either poorly designed, bad UX, weird browser problems or trying too hard to be more then a RSS reader. Guess I'll just have to spend 2 days and build my own. Oh, well :)

I wonder if Google has accounted for the effect of people who have been burned by coming to rely on a product that was yanked becoming reluctant to use Google products in the future?

Joining in on the disapproval of Google's move here, as I use it constantly all day everyday! Here's to hoping this public cry might change Google's decision to axe it...

I am using KrISS Feed, https://github.com/tontof/kriss_feed If you speak French, a little help here: http://tontof.net/?2013/03/14/18/12/56-presque-nouveau-lecte... and a demo there: http://tontof.net/feed

FEEDLY has done a great job: - with 4 clicks you find ALL feeds with - ALL feed groups / folders - ALL tags are imported - you even have the complete HISTORY of all feeds again - it is SYNCHED REALTIME with your Google Reader account: if you "like" a post in feedly, you instantly also have a "star" in Google Reader.

Any alternative discussed here should have this import and SYNC feature, otherwise it is useless.


This is just a delayed press release, reader was killed 2 years ago with the release of google+ that removed the amazing social/sharing features that made it special.

I use Google Reader a lot so this is a shame|sad|annoying :(

Still this video "Hitler finds out Gooder Reader is shutting down" at least put a broad smile back on my face :)


(via Dave Winer tweet - https://twitter.com/davewiner/status/312049161677713408)

I thought of this exact situation just last night when subscribing to a feed.

Firefox sent me to a google page which offered me an option to add it to either iGoogle or Reader. I recalled that iGoogle is being shut-down and thought it was strange that it was still offered as a prominent option. I guess now it makes sense.

I seems strange to me though that Reader will be shut down before iGoogle, which is slated for November 1, 2013.

Here's another good Google Reader alternative. https://feedbin.me.

It's a new reader with a similar experience to NetNewsWire. It costs $2/month but there is a free 3 day trial. I created Feedbin because I was looking for an alternative to Google Reader that's simpler than what's already out there. No social junk, no ads, no content discovery. Just an RSS reader.

A year ago near last Google Reader redesign I made my own online RSS-reader http://www.cliws.com/ and now don't care.

We should less depend on the large corporations. The idea about I think last time is that we need some kind of distributed Twitter (like we have perfectly worked distributed email now).

If you can't replace one tool with another you are in trouble definitely.

It’s sad to see google killing one of the most useful service. Though, there’s a petition going on to keep the Google Reader running https://www.change.org/petitions/google-keep-google-reader-r... and more than 40k+ people have signed it.

If Google still decides to kill the service, I am going to use Feedly ;).

What happened to you Google :(

It looks like a bit of work to set up, but I might just adjust how I digest things and give this a shot: http://tabs.mediahackers.org. "Rivers" probably aren't going to have the archiving and what not that Google Reader or others will have (maybe, haven't looked that deeply) but most stuff I just read, or not, and move on.

Thats funny... I found this post on google reader.

Crap, after years of avoiding RSS, yesterday I found a blog that I wanted to follow.

I signed up for Google Reader...

Sorry, folks - I may have caused the shut-down.

Though we focus more on industry/professional news, Delve (delvenews.com) just launched Google Reader integration. Now you can sync your data and we'll pull in sources, generate topics and turn your folders into 'channels' for fast news filtering. It's free to use Delve as an individual and we're launching our mobile apps soon!

They could have turned it into a payed service, with so many active users. What would be the arguments against such a move?

The really interesting product/service would be a datastore and RSS consumer like GR API is.

I think a lot of competitors spend time working on the UI and miss the power that is behind it.

(I would include Google in this list, even if they didn't have the front end UI the Atom API would still be a useful thing.)

I wonder if building something on elasticsearch would work.

This one works well on mobile devices and lets you add feeds from around the web and tag them for retrieval later. It also keeps you focused on one feed at a time instead of letting you put 100 feeds on one page which makes it hard to read any one.


For those looking for a desktop app, the Opera browser has a nice integrated RSS reader and is cross-platform.

Lots of people rushing to build RSS clients, but why not build something better?

If you can build something that will take any URL, figure out which bits are changing regularly (the news items, etc), and push the changes to a Reader style interface, you might be on to a winner.

It's 2013, a reader should be possible without RSS.

I've looking into building a Google Reader alternative for quite some time now. Because let's face it, Google Reader has been neglected since forever. This news prompts me to finally do it. Tell me what you think: http://getfishwrap.com/

This definitely is the first time I've been disappointed by a web service shutting down.

I've been looking through alternatives. I'd like it to look like this, http://wp.me/aseR-cr , be web-based, have keyboard navigation, and not much else.

Is there a web-based newsbeuter?

Could someone underline the advantages of Google Reader and the features that will be missed ? What had it that other free products don't ?

(I use a desktop reader for news (FeedDemon) and an Android app for podcasts, I don't really know what I'm missing by not using something like reader.)

I am calling for the biggest shitstorm in the existence of the Internet. Anonymous, where are you? :D

I've got to mention the FF add-on "InfoRSS" which I haven't used in a while, but I just exported my feeds to it rather painlessly and it offers some nice features if you're willing to put a bit of time into customizing what you want from it. Deals with podcasts as well.

At readrz.com, we will be releasing a related tool in a few weeks. It is not a pure RSS reader, but it's useful for aggregating information. See more details and subscribe for updates at http://eepurl.com/d48hj

I was hoping for a different fate for Google Reader.

- The feed digesting functionality could have been merged into Google+

-Google Reader could have become a news reader skin on the of G+

As long as Google Reader remained a stand alone service and yet deeply tied into the search index, it has been doomed.

I was kind of always expecting this ... I'm always afraid the same thing will happen to Voice.

I don't know, Voice can act as a competitor to Microsoft's Skype. With no visible competing product from Microsoft, Apple or Facebook and no perceived competition from something like Newsblur Google thinks they can kick their Reader users in the junk with impunity.

Author Warren Ellis on twitter: "Google shuts down Google Reader, probably the most effective tool I have."


I never used google reader, but I wrote my own tool to merge the feeds I care about into one megafeed: https://code.google.com/p/msrss/

That way, I don't have to depend on any web services.

For OS X users that use Apple Mail it supports RSS Feeds.

Not sure about Outlook 2012 for Mac though...

Sadly, that went away in Mountain Lion.

oh, geez. I am on 10.8 but I dont use Apple Mail and I was going to go back to it solely for OS X.

Search, maps, reader what other Google services do geeks use daily? Strange decision!

When choosing your new reader, look for the one that's already monetized. Feedly has ads and plans for premium. NewsBlur has a paid option. Any hosted option without financial incentive lives at the whim of the developer.

Would you pay for Google Reader per month? https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1xr6ZINsFK69VCPW2ryuTfHGrt1R...

Yes. But without ads and with my privacy intact, totally.

I have been working on one for the last couple of weeks, and will hopefully create it as a fully functional RSS reader:


for more information, visit me on reddit username: 7hundredand77

One update for all RSS feed fans. If you are in India, US or Casnada, you could SMS enable your feeds by using the RSS feature of http://txtweb.com. check it out!

Between the massive interest in this topic and the fact that many google reader competitors were crushed by load last night, I'm having a hard time believing use has 'declined' as much as Google is implying.

At least now I'll have to search for another reader. I've always were worried that Google knows too much about me. They can access my email, see what I search and download, and every news/blog that I follow.

The writing was on the wall for reader once they stripped the commenting/sharing functionality. This was a great tool for the teams I managed to stay on top of things. The redesign destroyed the product.

Time to stick to Akregator.

I've been reading up about Akregator, and it seems to be direly under-staffed in terms of developer oomph. There was blag post a few years ago about porting it to Akondai: http://algorithmsforthekitchen.com/blog/?p=137 but it is still using Metakit.

Maybe this is the wake up call to get Akregator back up to snuff, though. I might look at the code to see if theres anything I can do, at least.

Good motivation for cleaning out all those feeds I never read anymore...

I use it daily. A lot. Since they're shutting it down, couldn't they release the code as opensource so we can build our own greader servers? Or is that insane from the technical point of view?

I reacted in a same way when Google Notebook shutted down. WTF GOOGLE?!

We convert a few big-ish blogs to audio using a professional reader if you're into audiobooks or podcasts. Skip Google Reader listen instead.


what is concerning is that this decision could influence sites making their feeds available.

Twitter and G+ are not viable alternatives.

Google alerts to RSS were wonderful. I'm sure they will shutter alerts soon too.

They could offer paid version. I guess lots of people will want to throw a few bucks for that kind of product. For me Google Reader is one of the few software that I use every day.

I bought SimpleRSS.com a little while ago with the intention of building an alternative and open-source RSS reader. If anyone's interested in acquiring the domain, message me! ;)

Netvibes is another alternative (it has a widget and reader view).

Thanks! Was trying to remember this one.

For the people running their own OwnCloud setup: https://github.com/owncloud/apps/tree/master/news

See. The thing is. I haven't found ONE solution that imports starred items, unread items, and feeds properly besides Reeder. And it doesn't work on Android or on the web. :(.

I support this move.

For me, RSS is a necessary evil. I always opt for email subscription when I have the choice, because I find it infinitely more convenient to have my subscriptions and emails in the one place, rather than in two separate products.

However, for sites that do not offer email subscription but only offer RSS coughHNcough - I reluctantly use Google Reader to subscribe. Meaning an extra account to check each day.

Hopefully this won't merely result in everyone switching to just another RSS aggregator - instead, I hope it will prompt websites to start using more convenient subscription methods, whether that be email or something else.

RSS is dead. Long live... ???

I used to have a news (rss feed) reader on my blackberry, which was great.

Now I switched to Android, I've been using Google Reader so I can sync it online too.

So now this sucks, what's the alternative?

- apt-get install rss2email - add some feeds - be done with it

I tried this a while back and totally forgot about it. Thanks for the reminder!

To run it, use the r2e command and you can follow the guide here:http://www.allthingsrss.com/rss2email/getting-started-with-r...

I think I will try this and set up some filters to move the feed emails out of my inbox for later viewing.

Next will be Blogger...

I'm going to try https://ifttt.com. It has a few recipes for RSS: RSS -> Instapaper, Readability, email and so on.

I just saw half my twitter timeline panicking about this. Is there so much people using it? What happened to desktop feed readers?

Newsbeuter is serving me well, as usual, for years.

Google Reader is the back-end/syncing platform for many desktop and mobile feed readers, so everyone who uses those apps suffers from this as well. It's especially useful for feeds that update frequently, because if you go offline for a period of time you end up missing out on content, especially if their feed only has the 15 most recent items. Google Reader is constantly downloading and storing those items, even when you're offline, and syncs them with your client when you reconnect. (Plus if you read RSS on both desktop and mobile, it keeps your read items in sync.)

Well, that's a feature of Google Reader I didn't know. Blame, since I never bothered to test it.

A very nice thing about Google Reader is that is real time, because it receives pubsubhubbub pushes. Are any of the alternatives mentioned here capable of that?

Looking through the git repo, it appears NewsBlur does.

I wonder what would happen if everybody who wants Google to continue Reader would start clicking on the Ads in Reader on a daily basis. Oh wait, which ads...

Are there any open source alternatives (I'm thinking Ruby/Rails/Sinatra) where I could throw up my own RSS read/sync server onto Heroku or something?

Have a look to see if there are any Planet type solutions for Ruby - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planet_(software)

I'm going to spend some time looking at the two main Perl solutions, Perlanet & Plagger (used respectively by http://ironman.enlightenedperl.org & http://perlsphere.net).

* Perlanet - https://metacpan.org/module/perlanet

* Plagger - https://metacpan.org/module/Plagger

Failing that I may produce a custom solution with a feed aggregator library (for eg. https://metacpan.org/module/XML::Feed::Aggregator).

I have never gotten the appeal of Google Reader. I've been using Netvibes for several years and have yet to find anything better. You'll be glad you did.


Reader was the only thing that made me almost want a Google account. A real shame to see it shut down -- I don't think any competitors are as good.

With the rise of things like Twitter and Facebook as primary news/link sources, I doubt that most people 18 and under even know what RSS is.

Correct me but the rest of the apps and website application who are RSS readers too use mostly, Google Reader. So this affects also them in a way.

This is a good opportunity for all you smart developers around here to come up with an open source self-hosted thing to replace gugl reader.

I'm assuming that this will also shut down the Google Reader API, but I haven't seen anything definite. Anyone have confirmation either way?

Hooray! One time I read the Fleshbot RSS feed, and I've never been able to un-read it -- it just stays in my "Read items" queue.

The loss of Reader doesn't matter much to me a most others. It's the fact that Reader synced all my RSS feeds to whichever application that was/is the flavour of the month. It's that ability to have a repository of your feeds available in an instance. That's the product people need. Google should try to build that functionality into Gmail or something.

Also, fuck any RSS feed reading service that charges monthly. I'll pay for an app, but I'm not paying a monthly subscription fee to read freely available content.

I'm going to move all my feeds over to FriendFeed.

Thank you, Google+

Liferea is a great RSS app. It's Free software too. http://lzone.de/liferea/

Although, it is sad for the current Reader users, good thing about Google is, it admits its failures quickly and get over it.

One of the first 2 sites I go to when I launch my browser in the morning everyday (gmail and reader). I will sorely miss it.

I believe the "loyal userbase" would be large enough to sustain a startup. But sadly that is not enough for google anymore.

Sergey Brin is a scurge for old Google fans.... this guy seems to focus on hardware related products more than what Google great.... its Web products

Well that sucks. One of my most used/visited apps/sites. Maybe Yahoo should build a reader. Could be a good fit for them.

actually it is still available until June 1st. sad it will be gone. I think gmail will be next to go - I think the last gmail redesign made the product less usable on purpose; they must be paying a lot for storage cost on abandoned accounts, old emails etc; nowadays they get more transient user info from other sources ...

well, their "cleaning"s now deserve their own blog; just google this: site:"googleblog.blogspot.com" intitle:cleaning

I am afraid of what I am going to do with all this spare time I will regain once this is gone.

This was the home page of "My" internet.

From your 626 subscriptions, over the last 30 days you read 12,220 items

Since September 5, 2010 you have read a total of 300,000+ items

I heartily recommend http://theoldreader.com/ - lean and mean.

Wow. That's a lot of angst. I feel it too. Years of saving useful links on reader which was really easy to search.

They shut down the products API, in case anyone was using it. It was a quick way to get pricing info into apps..

Checkout http://multiplx.com as an alternate to Google Reader.

Screw you, Google. Now I need to spend my own time to write a replacement as there is no viable alternative.

Google: Reader usage is going down, lets axe it.

Every alternative reader website / service: Fuck me thats a lot of traffic.

Do you this will have a big impact on sites like daring fireball that have a huge rss subscription base?

Save Google Reader : http://www.savereader.info

Sad to see it go. At least I have 3 months to make my own, should make for a good weekend(s) project.

Anybody knows good alternatives?

Seeing the boom in alternatives, someone should start making a feedburner competitor.

I think Feedblitz is one of the most popular at the moment. I'll either be switching to that or MailChimp.

Which reader can parse the xml file google reader generates without extra work?

To me Reader is the 2nd most used google Service. A Great Lost to me.

How about another petition to atleast open source the code so maybe the community can host it on google apps/ec3 or users can run a private instance

The problem is the historical data of all the feeds they've archived, not the interface. Google, a large number of almost-evil moves eventually adds up to evil.

Sounds like an opportunity for Yahoo to raise its profile.

Dammit, I should be looking for an alternative rss reader

holy cow....can't believe this is going away. I love reader.

real reason they are shutting it down...they want all that sharing/interaction in Google+...which i hate.

Not cool, GOOG. Suppose I'll give NewsBlur a try then.

Guys, try this goo.gl/r861h Visually rich RSS reader

let me be the first to say http://nooooooooooooooo.com/

that is so sad.

its too bad. i can see why they cancelled it but it was an essential part of how i process information

I'll be honest, I never even tried Google Reader. An RSS reader is such a simple app, I didn't think that it would anything special.

Its very bad day for rss lover....

Will blogger stop supporting RSS?

RSS bypasses ads on websites. Google makes money on those ads. It was strange that they supported RSS for so long.

the world is near the end

As soon as RSS disappeared from Mountain Lion, Google copied the idea: time to sue again.

If they want to make money from it, charge for it.

I would gladly pay $40/month to access Google Reader.

Don't Be Evil... Heh.

WTF is this bullshit... I love Google Reader.

I'm a big dummy but almost every major decision Google has made since Larry Page became CEO has me baffled. The whole idea of squandering the nice vibes they had by forcing everybody into that stupid Facebook knockoff, killing off cool projects left and right, those dumb glasses that nobody is going to buy... I don't get it.

Is Reader costing them that much money? Put some ads on it then. Is this a Captain Ahab thing where Facebook is the whale? Then someone should let them know that no one really likes their Facebook ripoff because no one likes the actual Facebook. Facebook is a fucking car crash. I wish Google would just make cool stuff and continue not being evil and knock it off with the master plan bullshit.

Supposedly Page has been heavily inspired by Steve Jobs's advice to him to 'focus'.

Just consider this part of Jobs's most poisonous legacy: his epigones.

Curse this decision - I use Google Reader every day.

What is the best alternative RSS reader ??

Just imported my feeds into http://theoldreader.com and it seems to work ok. Just keep in mind that importing takes a while - I saw only the first entry for a minute or two, then others started joining in.

This is looking like the best straight up switch out for reader. Imports are currently limited, and adding a sub takes a while. I'm sure it will settle down in a couple of days.

Message when clicking "import": Hey! Because of the huge load we started seeing from lots of concurrent feed import operations, we had to limit the number of imports active at any given time. It looks like right now there are no available slots left, so you might want to visit this page some time later. Meanwhile, feel free to subscribe to feeds manually. Please accept our apologies for this inconvenience.

Jesus. Just got into the import queue...

> There are 41600 users in the import queue ahead of you.

I bet they're happy right now.

There were apps and services. They starting shutting down. Never actually mattered. Not to me at least. Until a few were killed, like Google Reader, and I started understanding the frustration and sometimes disappointment shown by some of the users and fans. I feel the same now. This is one of the few services other than Gmail that I use(used) from Google's shop. Will have to settle for a good alternative now.

I guess I would rather to go a paid solution. It's for the same reason that I am thinking of this move that I went to Pinboard from Delicious for - advertisements were not my worry, it was the chance being shut down.

Was Google Reader bringing any revenue to Google? I mean I never saw any ads in there, so I doubt it but some of you might be knowing better.

Not sure they have killed for just being out there not bringing any money home or they will be focussing on Google Currents now?

But stuff like this http://nick.typepad.com/blog/2013/03/the-end-of-feeddemon.ht... is more sad than the news itself :(

If one think devs must learn from this development, that would be - go for an open standard now. The way Rackspace is doing with OpenStack for cloud. Similarly sth for feed sync/tag etc - where a services changes with an URL and few more things like an UUID etc. Devs in this field might be having a better picture of this.

I just want sth like email. Like currently I host my mails with Google Apps with my domain but I can take it to my VPS any minute and my email will still be up and will keep syncing to my desktop/mobile clients without a problem. Or maybe I would shift to some free provider like ABC, XYZ etc.

I use reeder for Mac and ipad that is connected to my google reader account. Need to find an alternative now.

Not necessarily; @reederapp tweeted a few hours ago, "Don't worry, Reeder won't die with Google Reader."

He's not very communicative but I suspect this means he's working on something :)

Google might drop anything now, groups , appengine, whatever , You just cant trust their Saas anymore.

Wait, Google is a business?

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