Today, Google Reader was officially turned off. While not a fundamentally game-changing action on its own, when coupled with several other trends in the online content landscape such as the rise of curated media (Upworthy, etc) and the development of new curation and reading tools (Flipboard and our own Read.it), we can infer that a major shift is coming our way, and coming fast.
Google Reader’s death sends a very strong message: that a very well-respected company thinks that aggregation on its own isn’t enough — that there is something fundamental missing from the content discovery and consumption process online today. The logical conclusion is that if the best robots in the world (courtesy of Google) couldn’t figure out how to give the best content day-by-day to its users.. then humans (and the beauty of the human mind) must be employed to select, judge the quality of, and share the most relevant and high-quality content available.
The loss of a heavily-used and user-loyal product is always unfortunate. Here at Scoop.it, we’ve been quietly waiting for something like this to happen — be it Google Reader or another popular aggregation tool. We’ve believed since we started in 2011 that the robots were not enough. But, we understand the utility of something like Google Reader. So, here are a few solutions through Scoop.it to help fill the Google Reader-sized hole that may appearing in your online landscape today:
1. Add-an-RSS Feature
We recently rolled out a new feature to our bookmarklet, which auto-searches web pages which you are scooping to your topic for available RSS feeds. If it finds one, it will prompt you to add the RSS feed to your topic’s sources, which control the suggested content for each of your topics. If you’d like more information about managing your sources to get the best possible content streams, you can check out this article in our Knowledge Base.
This feature makes it incredibly easy to pull in additional content that matches your specifications from sources you already trust (you’re already scooping their content), allowing you to get more relevant, awesome content in one place.
2. Import OPML Files
You can also import a custom OPML file to your Scoop.it topic sources. An OPML file allows you to transfer your RSS feeds and other aggregations to other sources easily. This is great news for Google Reader users — you can simply download your OPML file and add it to your Scoop.it sources for your topics.
To add your OPML file to your topic, simply navigate to the topic you’d like to edit, open your suggested content, click “manage sources,” then click “advanced options.” There is an upload field for your OPML file. Simply upload and the sources from your current RSS tool or your Google Reader account with automatically be reflected in your suggested content.
If you’d like more information about how you can maximize your content sources, check out this resource.