You may have heard that Google Reader is being phased out, and will be out of commission by July 1st. And although I like Google Reader and was disappointed to hear the news, there may be a silver lining. Here are three reasons why Google Reader’s imminent demise is not necessarily a bad thing.
1. Small developers can fill the void: Google (and gigantic corporations like it) don’t need to have a finger in every pie. Their exit leaves the space open for small developers and innovators. I say this not just to theorize, but with the belief that an unchecked, omnipresent, and all powerful Google is bad for the internet and bad for small players, even for a small website like mine.
It’s also a chance for me to research and compare the best free alternatives to Google Reader (coming soon).
2. A chance to weed out the 80% of feeds in your list that were just clutter. I know from personal experience that while I had more than 200 feeds in there, I didn’t actually read most of them. Worse yet, the sheer volume of information was too much to handle, such that I DIDN”T actually go in and check the feeds hardly at all.
Now that you’re going to export your OPML file and import it somewhere else, you have a change to (a) remove those RSS feeds that in hindsight you know were just clutter, that you never read, and (b) remove those sites that have shut down and no longer update their feeds (which, I was surprised to find, was a surprisingly large number).
3. RSS will stay alive: while speculation for the shuttering of Google Reader center around their desire to give Google plus a boost in it’s place, RSS will stay alive. The reason? Sites like mine are eager to get their content out into circulation by any means, and fashionable aggregators like Flipboard and others will eagerly collect it and put it out.
Thoughts? Opinions? Reactions? Please share them in the comments section below.