Ask.com kills Bloglines
Gives RSS reader the bullet
Bloglines, the web-based RSS reader, will be permanently shut down next month.
Ask.com, which bought Bloglines in early 2005 for $10m, when it was the market leader, said on Friday that users should migrate to another service by October 1.
"Not an easy decision, especially considering our loyal and supportive (not to mention patient) user base, but, ultimately, the right one given business reasons simply too hard to ignore," it said.
The media group added that it wants to focus on its user-generated question and answer service, and that "RSS aggregator usage has slowed significantly" as a result of Facebook and Twitter feeds.
Ask.com's decision to scrap Bloglines has been expected for over a year. The service has not been updated for months, and has suffered multiple outages recently.
It leaves Google dominant in the web-based RSS reader market. ®
For some reason, they haven't posted my comment on their blog
which read something along the lines of "you've bought a service that worked, done fuck all with it for years and now killed it. excellent, well done: I am certainly more disposed to use Ask's services now"
Really, really pissed off over this - Ask have the right to run whatever services they want, but why buy the fucking thing in the first place and then do nothing with it. Their reason for shutting it down is total nonsense as well - if they can't tell the difference between the content of an RSS feed and the stream of drivel that constitutes twitter, then god help them
Suggestions for a replacement? So far today I've tried Google Reader, Feedly, activor.us and Feedshow - hated all of them. Feedly is kind of interesting, but I want to read what I want to read, not what happens to be newest; GR and Feedshow don't allow non-alphabetic sorting, and feedshow doesn't seem to have been updated for the last 3 years. GR is also encrusted with loads of Web 2 shite: "like" & "share this" buttons, and the like.
Any colour as long as it's Google.
I've had to revert to Google, but, out of the box it is not as intuitive as Bloglines, where you could see the lay of the land at a glance. Maybe some tweaking with the iGoogle API will allow the development of a gadget that looks more like Bloglines.
I feel very uncomfortable with Google being able to monitor what I'm reading, and who knows whether they won't take it upon themselves to censor news reports 'for my convenience and browsing security' at some time in the future?
I agree that this is a definite opportunity for an open source or not-for-profit initiative.
Moving to iPad
I'm a virtual addict to Bloglines and have always loved the interface, despite the occassional/frequent hiccups of late. Been searching all weekend for a good alternative. Google seems to have the best infrastructure behind it and is likely to be better supported and arround for longer. Although I hate the Google Reader website.
Plenty of apps for the iPad that use Google Reader but took a while to find one that replicates it as much as possible. Finally settled on River of News, fully recommend it as the best replacement for myself. And now I can take my RSS feeds to bed with me to help feed my addiction.