RIP Google Reader – Do You Care?


I was surprised to hear that Google is killing off Google Reader. I’ve been a sporadic user for years, and I know many people still rely on RSS feeds to keep up with multiple blogs and other sites. At the same time, I suppose I fall into the “declining use” category mentioned by Google. With so many places for news and content discovery, I rely on Reader less than in the past.

Still, of Neuromarketing‘s 25K+ readers, two thirds are RSS subscribers. I have to believe that a significant number of these subscribers may be affected by Google’s decision.

Benefits of Email Subscription

If you are an RSS subscriber (or don’t subscribe at all!), now would be a good time to subscribe by email. I generally send a notice out just once a week, and the note in your inbox will ensure you don’t miss any posts. (I know I’ve got so many feeds in my reader that I often just scan the most recent updates.)

To summarize, email subscribers get these benefits:

  • Updates about once a week. Rarely twice. Never more.
  • No new content, no email.
  • Non-post emails are very rare. Probably one in the last six months.
  • No deluge of webinar invites, affiliate offers, paid product deals, etc. I rarely do anything like this, and if I do it is worth a look.
  • Totally FREE!

Don’t miss new Neuromarketing features – subscribe!

And, as for Google Reader, do you use it? Have you found a good substitute? Leave a comment with your thoughts – lots of people will be looking for a solution in the coming months!

  1. Jeff Lowy says

    I found this blog through Google Reader. So, yeah, I care. I guess I’ll have to subscribe to the email list. I try to keep my inbox newsletter free, but ya gotta do what ya gotta do, I guess…

    1. Roger Dooley says

      Feedly has been mentioned as a substitute product, Jeff.


  2. Phil says

    I have been using Google reader daily for the last 6 or so years. I am devastated to hear it’s being taken offline!

    I don’t know of any substitutes, can anyone suggest? Email wont work for me because when it comes in I wont necessarily be in the mood or viable situation to read.

    Desperate for an alternative!

  3. Jen says

    I follow Neuromarketing using Google Reader, and it is a tool I use daily — all day long. I am devastated that Google is retiring Reader, but I discovered Feedly today, which has a similar interface and is really catering to those displaced by Google.

  4. Glenn Friesen says

    My memories of the Internet before I began using Google Reader — shoddy. Google Reader has been the “nerve center” of my online life, complemented by my more private Gmail world, and the occassional swim through Quora or Facebook.

    I’ve only visited this site personally, perhaps, 10 times in the past few years. Yet, I believe I’ve read every post you’ve published through the magic of Google Reader. Now that Google Reader is going the way of the dodo, I’m pretty sad because it’ll be total pain to transition to another aggregator like and I don’t want to lose all these great, tailored, feeds 🙁

    Ah well, change is the only constant I guess

    btw, I love the posts here at NeuroSci Marketing — great work my friend!

  5. Neil Hopkins says

    Hey Roger

    I actually care deeply about GR. If I subscribed to my feeds by email, I’d be looking at 1000+ emails per day with almost no way of usefully filtering them.

    Your updates, for example, would drown.

    However, because I’ve got you in a ‘High Priority’ type GR folder, I can find them, see them, scan them, read them and share them with much less energy than the equivalent process that email sifting would take.

    I rarely have time to sift, sort, open and read through email properly. RSS allows me to do this almost instantly.

    I’ll miss GR and will have to find a substitute.

    1. Roger Dooley says

      Seems odd that Google would kill it, I can’t believe it is a high maintenance product. Someone suggested that it took traffic away from Google Plus, a higher priority.


  6. James says

    I’m going to migrate to Newsblur, looks like a nice interface and all the functionality I need, and quite literally run by one man and his dog

    Very annoyed by this decision

    1. Mary says

      I’ll try to do the same! Thnak you!

  7. Xavier Bartholome says

    Most has been sais!

    I do care a great deal …

    Newsblur, The Old Reader, Netvibes, Feedly are usually proposed as alternatives, but I find them less userfriendly.

    Also Newsblut, announced it doe not offer free service anymore …

    1. Roger Dooley says

      Thanks for the list of alternatives, Xavier!


  8. Roger Dooley says

    There’s an interesting post at Search Engine Roundtable about this: Why Google Reader Is Closing According To Former 3 Year Reader PM. I wonder if Google is surprised by this backlash, and whether they will just stonewall. This product can’t be an enormous resource-consumer, can it?


  9. Adam says

    This seems quite strange that Google would kill off reader while they have just left Feedburner to rot for years.

    Surely they could let Reader rot too? (or at least not develop it or update it).

    I don’t agree with their decision for iGoogle either, they probably have a good reason for it, but from where I stand I can’t see it.

    Over to Netvibes I guess.

    1. Roger Dooley says

      I agree, Adam, it seems like “doing nothing” might have been a better option. Unless, of course, you buy into the theory that Reader was taking traffic away from Plus.

  10. Tjasa says

    My uneducated guess is that Google Reader was mostly used by educated people. Also judging by comments above.

    I used to think I wasn’t attached to anything computer/internet related, but one morning last week hooking up on my computer with a cup of coffee… I was devastated. For a second I ws thinking of closing down all my Google products. Now, I’m in denial.

    1. Roger Dooley says

      I think the whole “subscribe to RSS” thing is used by more computer-savvy folks, Tjasa. It’s not difficult at all, but usually it’s just the cryptic RSS icon that promotes the feed, and even the “RSS” label won’t help lots of folks.


  11. Darren says

    Like a previous reader I found this blog via an rss feed. Also, I’d rather keep my email free from most newsletters nowadays and keep it for more personal correspondence. Its very easy for me to keep up to date with my fav blogs and websites via an rss reader. I’m thinking you don’t fully appreciate how RSS fans used reader. Its all worked out well as I’ve now migrated to Feedly which I think is much better than Google Reader!

    Great Blog by the way 😀


    Darren Anthony.

  12. Mark Morphew says

    Hi Roger,

    After hearing the news about Google killing off their reader i moved on over the an RSS reader called “the old reader”, it actually works great – a lot of people are suggesting that Google is trying to funnel everything through Google+ as they can’t really fully monetize the RSS feeds – kinda make sense don’t you think?


  13. Bill Hartzer says

    I’m actually not surprised that they’re killing off Google Reader. People don’t get their news and info from using RSS like they used to. It’s still useful, but as a business Google has to support only products that make money, right?

  14. euonymous says

    While I don’t care so much about Google Reader, I do care that iGoogle is going away on November 1, 2013. I built the perfect internet portal for myself and now it’s disappearing. It’ll be a real loss for me and has completely destroyed my preference for things Google. Google Plus, by the way, never seems to have achieved the traction required to be a success. Given what’s happened to so many Google products, it doesn’t make sense to depend on them.

  15. Rachel says

    There’s an interesting post at Search Engine Roundtable about this: Why Google Reader Is Closing According To Former 3 Year Reader PM. I wonder if Google is surprised by this backlash, and whether they will just stonewall. This product can’t be an enormous resource-consumer, can it really?

    1. Roger Dooley says

      I agree, Rachel – this doesn’t seem like a high-maintenance product.


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