Remember when Google decided to axe Google Reader? I felt like a part of me died because that’s what I use to keep up with people’s blogs. I like all the features that came along with Google Reader and I didn’t know of any other RSS readers that could do the same things.
What I didn’t understand at the time was why they decided to kill off Google Reader. The reaction from people was pretty strong too. There were so many people against the discontinuation of Google Reader and were frustrated that they now also had to find a different service to use. So, interest in the service wasn’t the main problem, really. The main problem lies in the fact that Google wasn’t making any money off of it. Unlike it’s other services like YouTube and Gmail, there’s no ads. I’m just so disappointed because I’m usually a fan of services by Google.
Thankfully there was another RSS reader that was available that had much of the same functions that Google Reader has – Feedly.
Actually, Feedly’s interface looks a lot smoother. I feel that it has more of a minimalistic feel, which I enjoy especially since it’s a page where you’re reading a bunch of stuff. I prefer the page to not be cluttered if I’m doing a lot of reading or if there’s a lot of pictures. Not that the newer Google Reader was cluttered, but I think Feedly did a better job with their design.
They provided an option to transfer over everything from my Google Reader so I didn’t have to do it manually. That was a great option to offer especially since everyone was panicking to find a substitute when the news broke out that the service was no longer going to exist. The only problem I had was that when it transferred everything, it didn’t create a list of tags that I had made in Google Reader. I had to manually transfer over the tags myself. My list isn’t too long so it wasn’t too big of a deal, but I imagine people with 100+ tags would be frustrated. I’m not sure if they’ve fixed that since then or not though.
I’m getting a bit nervous now, however, because the other day they asked users to do a quick survey. It mentioned that it might not be able to continue offering the service for free in the future and if it were to start charging us, how much would we be willing to pay? The fact that I just changed over sort of recently and now Feedly also seems uncertain about its future. The huge influx of new users is putting a strain on their servers after Google’s announcement and although they’re trying their best to accommodate everyone, it becomes taxing.
Another company that has been causing me stress recently is -drum roll-.. Flickr!
A couple of hours later I received an e-mail from Flickr and I also saw a tweet by Mashable in regards to the changes that were taking place. Apparently Flickr upped the maximum amount of space for everyone to 1TB. That sounds great, right? Yes, if you were a free user. Free users back then had a monthly limit and also, only their first 200 most recent pictures were viewable on their photostream.
Someone mentioned a catch though, I’m not sure if it’s true or not because Flickr’s FAQ is confusing as hell. Apparently you can only upload 300mb a month, so yes, while 1TB is a huge amount, it would also take forever to fill up with a 300mb/month limitation. As a pro member, I had no limitations in anything except when it came to video files. We had a size and time limit, but that didn’t concern me much because I never surpassed either of them much.
Instead of having a pro membership, Flickr gave two new options. Pay $50 a year for it to be ad-free or $500 to double your space to 2TB. Pro membership used to cost around $25. So with the new structure in place, I would be paying double only to receive an ad-free experience – nothing more, nothing less. As other people have brought up, why would I pay $500 to receive 2TB when I could just make multiple free accounts instead?
I’m very frustrated though because I chose to host all my images on Flickr and I don’t know if I should stay with them anymore. I don’t know if I’d have the time to back up all the images and just reupload them onto a different service. For the images that are for this blog, I would have to go back and change all the links. Yes, I could just upload them onto my blog’s host instead, but I prefer not to do that. Mostly because when I back everything up, the size of the backup would be big. If I decide to move to a different host later, I would have to reupload everything again.
At the end of the day, all companies look at is how much profit they gain. No matter how much people may be against it, companies are not willing to listen to us and continue to forge ahead. I understand they have to change to keep up with the times, but Flickr pretty much just threw its loyal customers to the curb to try and entice new, young consumers that probably wouldn’t stay for long anyway.
Anywho, on a different note.. do you guys like the pictures my brother did for me for this entry? LOL..