Posted by: David Spinks - 18 June 2009 / 14:17
So apparently, as of today if you’ve imported your blog into your friendfeed timeline, those that subscribe to your feed in friendfeed are now considered to be part of your subcriptions along with Google Reader, Bloglines, My Yahoo and anywhere else people can subscribe to your blog. Read the post about it here. This means feedburner and other subscription tools will include those subscriptions in your stats. The response from the social web? An overwhelming #FAIL.
RSS subcription statistics are a useful tool that allows you to see how many of your readers are committed to reading your publication on a regular basis. When someone adds your feed to their google reader, or Blogline, or any of these services, they receive all of your new posts whenever you write them. This is not necessarily the case with Friendfeed. In fact, this is hardly ever the case. To name just a few reasons why this new addition sucks:
- There are a number of reasons why someone might subscribe to your Friendfeed (FF). The concept of friendfeed is that you can import your updates from a number of different services, including your blog, twitter, facebook, and more. That means that someone may subscribe to me because they’re interested in my twitter and facebook updates without ever really having interest in my blog.
- You are forced to either read everything in other reader tools. I use google reader, and if someone posts a new blog post, I can either read it, or just click “mark as read” but the point is that I’m aware that a new post exists. On FF, similar to twitter, you can miss a post, and unless you go back to check if it’s there, you’ll have no idea you missed it.
- Friendfeed isn’t as active as it may claim to be. Not too long ago, friendfeed launched a new feature where you can import all of your twitter contacts and automatically subscribe to them on friendfeed. I did this. I never use Friendfeed. That means I am counted as a subscriber to a lot of peoples’ blogs/publications because I follow them on FF when in actuality, I don’t ever read their blog. I know that this is the same case for many others in the blogosphere.
See how wrong this addition is now? A statistic that is supposed to represent readers who are loyal, regular readers, is now including people that never read your blog. The whole import your twitter contacts thing seemed to be nothing more than a buzz builder to get people talking about Friendfeed. I’m really hoping that this isn’t the same, because it’s really messing up a valuable service.