A Worrying Survey From Feedly

After Google Reader gave up a while back I scrambled to find an alternative. I love RSS readers and I love reading so many blogs and websites and web comics and so on in one place. I follow and regularly read close to 200 feeds and Google’s announcement filled me with dread. I started trawling for a replacement and I recall it was Lifehacker that pointed me toward Feedly. I tried it out, learned to use it, and stuck with it ever since. Feedly is an excellent RSS and news aggregator.

Then, this morning, I notice a link near the top of the Feedly site. It could’ve been there for the last couple days and I might have missed it. I’m typically into the content rather than the interface. It says “We are running a customer satisfaction survey to define the feedly roadmap. 8 questions/5 minutes. #listening”

Okay, sure. I’ll take it, especially if it helps make Feedly even better — though I’m not sure how, because Feedly meets my needs 100% right now. That’s when I got a little worried. The questions aren’t really abut how to make Feedly better. No, they’re more like what would you do if Feedly goes away?

No seriously, that’s one of the questions:

How would you feel if you could no longer use feedly? along with What would you likely use as an alternative if feedly was no longer available?

Ummm… oh dear.

My thoughts are similar to Michael Perry (@michaelrperry6) where he believes that they, like Google Reader, didn’t have a sustainable business model and now they’re starting to teeter a bit.

Would I pay for Feedly? Sure. I love Feedly… but there’s an issue. If I have to pay for it, that makes me start looking around and asking questions. It becomes a thing I have to buy, like my MacBook Air. I literally researched laptop computers for months before buying my Air. If I have to buy something, I’m going to have to look around and make sure that I’m getting the best value and best product for my money. I’ve not done that with an RSS reader and, with Feedly, I kind of think that I would be more prone to buying a standalone app for my laptop (where I read most of my news anyway).

A standalone app, pulling in RSS feeds isn’t an online service, which means it’s not likely to go away. The app will always be there, pulling my feeds.

And I won’t have to worry about relying on yet another service that drops off the face of the Net.

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