It’s Not Just Reader: Google Kills Chrome RSS Add-On Too

Scott Gilbertson, NeuroScientistNews, Mar 18, 2013
Commentary by Stephen Downes

Those of you who were using Chrome because it was new and cool - well, you may want to rethink. "The company has also killed off its RSS extension for Chrome, and marked a longstanding bug requestingthat the extension become a native part of Chrome as 'Won’t Fix.' Add it all up and it certainly looks like Google wants to not just shut down an unprofitable service, but to kill off its support for RSS entirely." Why would this be, you might ask? Well, to my mind, it's precisely the same reason RSS is so attractive, especially in knowledge-based and education-based applications: it's difficult to to marketing and push media campaigns in RSS, because people can simply unsubscribe. The problem, for Google, isn't that RSS is broken - it's that it isn't broken. All those spammy Google ads are almost entirely absent from RSS, and that was a situation Google (in its new post-IPO incarnation) simply couldn't stomach. If you needed any proof of this, consider the fact that Google has pulled all ad-blocking apps from the Google Play store.

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