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Up in Smoke
By: Mike Bush
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No, this isn’t a post about the guy who was elected to begin living in Vatican City. It’s a post about a decision made by Google that might be the most disappointing thing I’ve read since Facebook started having dead people like brands.
[Insert something witty]
Google announced yesterday that they would be killing off Google Reader, and it simply leaves me sad.
For me, Reader was the first tool that really made the spark go off on what content consumption of the future might be all about. Like you, I have a diverse set of content that I read on a daily basis. If you read my posts here regularly, you’ve probably figured out that I tend to have three sites that I use for technology news (Business Insider, GigaOm, and The Inquisitr are the sites I go to most).
If you work in technology as a flack, you need to know what the big companies are doing, and my opinion is that BI is great for both sharing news and discussing what it means. I have a particular interest in TelCos, and I think GigaOm covers that space better than anyone. And The Inquisitr manages to keep me up to date on pop culture and weird news, while also tackling news in the technology space with relevant analysis (this mix is pretty hard to do effectively).
Those three combine to be about my perfect technology newspaper…except that rather than a daily newspaper, they provide a real-time stream of information (this goes back to when I said Reader tripped the light on content of the future for me).
Of course, I have other interests. I follow a mid-major conference for college basketball, and am an avid baseball fan (following both the Red Sox and minor league baseball). And I still think Dilbert is pretty darn funny.
Keeping with my newspaper analogy…Google Reader made me realize that I could build a real-time newspaper that catered each section (Headlines, Business, Technology, Sports, Gossip and the Comics) to exactly what I was looking for.
It also had some early social components that allowed friends to promote what they were reading in their own, individually suited newspaper. It’s the ultimate water-cooler conversation: Hey, did you see what happened with (INSERT STORY HERE)?
And now, the first tool that made me realize how awesome the future of content consumption...a future I am desperately hoping comes to a TV near me…is being retired. Put out to pasture to go play golf with the Pope.
Here’s hoping another company steps in and delivers on the promise that Google Reader had.

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About the Author
Mike Bush is a PR and Marketing freelancer with more than a dozen years of experience in the field. Find him on and connect Twitter @mikebush or at www.mikebush.nyc. 
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