RSS Is NOT Dying


Google Chrome has no RSS reader. It doesn’t even try to render RSS, or even help the user with it in any way. It gives less of a crap than a French man smoking a cigarette in public.

Mozilla will deal the final blow that kills RSS off. In Firefox 4.0, there will be no RSS button on the toolbar by default. Mozilla outright refuse to listen (33 bloody votes!) to their users on this matter.

The reason for this is that statistically, only 3%–7% of users use the RSS button on the toolbar. If not enough people use it already, then how many less people are going to use it if it’s not there by default? How many regular users customise their toolbar to add a button they barely use?

[From blog · RSS Is Dying, and You Should Be Very Worried]


Chrome has a RSS Reader – it’s called Google Reader. Same thing for Firefox. They have an integrated RSS client. It’s called Google Reader.

Also, you’re assuming that the only use of RSS is to give headlines to users. This is NOT the case. The typical Spinn3r client is NOT your normal Google Reader style end-user application. We have a few of course. But they’re not the majority use case.

Most of our customers are social medial monitoring applications (in fact most of the industry has standardized on us).

RSS and Atom will be around for a long time to come. They’re a major component of web infrastructure.

  1. Sean

    I think the point of the original article was the fact that most (all?) browsers are removing the RSS icon from the toolbar when a feed is detected on a page, making it a serious annoyance to get the feed into Google Reader in the first place. Some sites, like yours, have a dedicated RSS feed link on the site itself, but many do not. To get the feed into Google Reader for these sites, I’d have to “view source” and copy the RSS link from there. That’s really obnoxious and absurd if you ask me.

  2. John

    Google doesn’t include Google Reader. It’s just a wall of taxt by default.

  3. @Sean

    You can just enter the URL usually. Just type in ‘’ to Google reader and it will find the feed via autodiscovery.


    No idea what you’re talking about. Could you elaborate?

  4. Although you can manually enter the address into Google Reader, Mozilla’s move goes directly against one of Dave Winer’s reasons why he thinks Twitter has taken off in comparison to RSS: ease of subscription.

    If you remove the RSS icon from the address bar (a method I use to subscribe to feeds) it just makes the issue worse for ‘RSS’. It’s heading in the wrong direction.

    It also baffles me why Mozilla are doing this in-light of the reason they launched Account Manager ( The reason they did this is because they felt account management should be handled by the browser and not the UI of the website. I think the same can be said for RSS.

  5. Hey Greg.

    Twitter and Facebook are taking off for a myriad of reasons, not just ease of subscription. :)

  6. That’s true, but the RSS button being removed certainly isn’t helping it’s cause. And I did say “one of Dave Winer’s reasons”.


  7. I think another issue is that we need a revamp of the decentralized web. These centralized systems have the advantage that they can control the user experience and iterate VERY fast but the decentralized web takes forever to iterate (if at all).

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