Sunday, March 17, 2013

My response to Google shutting down Reader

I think John Scalzi hit the nail on the head on why Google Reader is being killed, namely that Google couldn't figure out how to make money from it and they're not interested in running something that isn't making them money, regardless of how many people use it. The official explanation is that they're shutting the service down because of declining usage (which is vague as fuck) and wanting to reduce the number of products.

If "declining usage" is the reason for killing Reader, then wouldn't the logical solution be to at least try and boost usage? I can't imagine that it would be difficult to redesign Reader to make it more appealing and user friendly, and give it at least a fraction of the promotion that Plus, Chrome, and the Play Store gets.

Jay over at EXONAUTS! says that there have been rumors over the past year that Blogger could be axed next. I disagree. While Google probably isn't making any money from Blogger, it has value in other areas. Google's been adding a lot of Google Plus integration to Blogger and even revamped its mobile app. They wouldn't do any of that if they were planning on shutting the platform down. Even aside from that, Blogger is one of the biggest blogging platforms on the internet and ditching it would serve no purpose other than to drive users into the arms of Wordpress, Tumblr, and others.

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