Bloglines Shutting Down Oct 1 – Score One for Facebook & Twitter

Yes, it’s true.  For so many who have relied on Bloglines for their information, it’s dead as of October 1, 2010.

Bloglines, an RSS aggregator much like Google Reader, was created as a place where people could see all their subscribed content in one place.  I used it for years and loved it.  I would subscribe to numerous websites and blogs.  In lieu of having to click on each site individually to tell if they had an updated post, I could simply go to my aggregator site and see which ones were new.  It was a sweet tool that allowed me to quickly scan new blog posts of friends and business colleagues.  I subscribed to small blogs no one ever heard of while also getting all the heavy-duty content from major bloggers around the world.

Bloglines is based on the concept of each person’s blog having a super-technology that alerts me of new content.  I liken it to hearing the AOL voice, “You’ve Got Mail”!  It would save me times of time each day because I could scan through the articles I wanted to read or include in posts of my own.  It was a newspaper of content, all sorted how I wanted it.

But then came Twitter and Facebook.  Most of the people I followed on Bloglines would end their new posts with “Follow me on Twitter” or “Add me as a Friend on Facebook.”  So I did.  Often, I would follow them on both social media giants.

I soon found myself being alerted of these same new posts on Twitter.  These same folks would say, “check out my new blog post”.  Because the two were often connected, I’d be reminded on my Facebook news feed that indeed this gal had written something new.  I’d click on the link and read the article.

Soon, these 2 feeds became my personal source for information.  I would go and check Bloglines occasionally (now weekly rather than daily) and kept hearing myself say, “Read that one Monday.  Saw that on Tuesday.  Done.  Seen it already.”  At that point, I discovered Bloglines had lost its place with me.  It was no longer providing a service of aggregating information.  I was getting it fed to me somewhere else.

Many of you have never heard of Bloglines or even used an RSS aggregator (this article predicts its demise over a year ago).  I know a few people who still check their “bookmarks” for sites that they see (I don’t know how this is practical unless you really on follow a few sites – which is probably what “normal” people do!  I’m not normal.  I’m an information junkie!)  So this funeral won’t mean much to you.  But for those junkies out here, it stands to bring attention to the power of information sharing.

It demonstrates that Facebook and Twitter continue to find ways to dominate, not just providing irrelevant status updates or stupid Farmville games.  They are a part of our daily news fix.  It’s on Facebook where our friends alert us to things they’d added to their site.  In recent events, Twitter even broke the news on a recent national news event.

So . . . so long Bloglines.  I haven’t visited you in a very long time, but you were a part of my life at one time.  You were a significant player in your day and the chronicles of social media history will no doubt remember your name.  Consider yourself a trailblazer in the world of information aggregation!

-Randy

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