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Is Facebook about to launch a Google Reader replacement?

social-media Updated: Jun 17, 2013 15:27 IST

AFP
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Facebook is inviting the press to a special event on June 20 that promises to reveal a big idea.

Specifically, the invitations, sent via traditional rather than electronic mail, claim that a “small team” has been working on a “big idea” and that said team wishes to discuss a new product at Facebook’s Menlo Park headquarters in California.

According to tech blogger Tom Waddington, the new product is a news aggregation service that uses RSS feeds. He claims to have uncovered code for supporting multiple RSS feeds from external sites and sources within Facebook’s codebase.

When Google announced in March that it would be shuttering its RSS feed service, Google Reader, on July 1, there was a minor outcry across the web as journalists and current affairs obsessives in particular took to their publications, to blogs and to social change platforms to criticize the decision and to attempt to force Google into reversing it.

Defending its position, Google pointed out that thanks to sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Google+, news consumption has changed forever and that status updates and Tweets are the new RSS feeds.

Still the announcement has seen a number of companies, such as Digg, attempting to fill the Google Reader-shaped void left as a result of the upcoming closure.

Facebook wants to be web users’ window on the world and therefore offering RSS feeds that would keep people logged in and coming back to the site on a regular basis throughout the day would make perfect sense. The move would also tie in with Facebook’e recent adoption of the hashtag which would make internet and site searches quicker and more effective.