Google Has Fumbled FeedBurner’s Real Time Opportunity

January 3, 2009 by

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Earlier this week, I lamented on Google’s poor handling of FeedBurner since acquiring the service.

Instead of capitalizing on FeedBurner’s large amount of inertia and kind feelings towards the service from the influence-sphere of bloggers, Google has relegated FeedBurner to the back shelf of its growing collection of dolls and toys.

In a post about the coming possibilities of a “ping economy” (attention economy?), Steve Gillmor points out the growing latency (ie impotency) of FeedBurner and how Google has mis-handled RSS notifications within Google Reader in general:

The Realtime Ping Server: “Whatever the case, and whether or not we’re correctly implementing a ping or not, the notion that blog posts are effectively removed from a realtime audience which is increasingly dominant is mindbogglingly stupid. Some even suggest there are competitive reasons for this lack of a strategy, but I can’t quite construct a convincing rationale for it to date. However, I will throw out the apparent fact that Google makes much more from Web pages than they do from RSS pages.

Inevitably, FriendFeed will roll out Track, and so will Twitter in short order, perhaps even sooner than FriendFeed’s smaller team can prioritize it. Until then, we will continue to model our Twitter cloud in FriendFeed constructs, make do with a lack of filtering tools to constrain the friend-of-a-friend overspill, and look to other players (Microsoft in particular) to compete directly with Feedburner at the RSS routing layer. There is no reason why RSS can’t be an effective protocol at the realtime layer, and FriendFeed’s growing arsenal of features is both a roadmap and a toolkit for the transition.

Note: I am publishing this post at 3:31PM Pacific time.

Update: 5:01PM No RSS.

Update: 5:52PM Still broken.”

Such a shame. FeedBurner could have taken blogging and pinging to the 2.0 level with more instantaneous notifications of updates. Instead, Google placed more “relevant” ads on our feeds and moved on.

Nothing to see there (except the ads, of course).

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