Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Why I'm Using Feedly Over Bloglovin

I think by now we've all heard that google reader will be no more this summer. I know this news has left a lot of us scrambling, trying to figure out just how what we'll be using to read blogs now. And I've seen a lot of people who have been switching over the bloglovin. As it is I've already added a bloglovin button on my sidebar to the right. Except, after hearing about it from Jessica, I instead started using feedly and so far I'm finding it a must better alternative.

The first notable difference, is how they transfer over your data. Once you ask bloglovin to add your reader data, it only gives you a list of all the blogs you follow. (Although I did have some issues with that, for example I previously subscribed to The Pioneer Woman, except it came over as a subscription to The Pioneer Woman Cooks.) If you took the time to order your subscriptions into folders that's lost. (I haven't actually completely done this yet, although it is on my 101 in 1001 list.) If you found a post you loved and had favorited, that's lost. If you had read all of the posts in a given subscription, or instead hadn't read a blogger's posts, that's gone to since it shows every feed with 2-5 posts or so.

Feedly instead has all that. The reason being is that is currently syncs to your google reader. Which means if you mark a post as read on google reader it's automatically read on feedly and visa versa. Of course with google's announcement feedly has had it will move your feeds to a new server so that data isn't lost at that point. But right now, if you start using feedly it will shows your organization, favorites, and read vs. unread posts just as they were in your reader.

Of course, once you have your data transferred, there's now the issue of how your read your data. With bloglovin, the screen looks like a tumblr blog. Each post you see has a picture instead of the wordy display of your reader. Feedly instead lets you customize your view. You can have it show only a text listing, or instead more visibly. And speaking of customization, you have have it show one feed or one of your folders with photos and instead yet another with text only.

Bloglovin makes public all the feeds I'm following, and there's some blogs I follow that I don't necessarily want everyone to know. You do still have an option to make the blogs you follow private, except since there's no select all, you manually have to click the name of every single blog to make private. I do see how as a blog owner you'd want to know whose subscribing to your feed, but I don't think that's something I need to know.

Speaking of which is better as a blog owner, bloglovin does force readers to read the post on your blog itself. Instead feedly is like google reader where you could read it all internally. Except I've always open a given blog in a new window to read posts since I like the overall feeling of getting the entire feel for the blog as your reading.

I may not be correct here, but from what I can tell bloglovin does not give the the ability to show posts you've already read. Nor does it allow you to sort posts to show the older first instead of the most recent. Feedly does give you the ability. Also, bloglovin automatically marks posts as read after 14 days. Instead since feedly is synced to google reader, posts stay unread for 30 days. I don't know what will happen once feedly stores this information on its own server, but I have to imagine it will stay unread for 30 days, and if your anything like me, I have trouble enough reading posts in 30 days, let alone 14!

That isn't to say there aren't any cons with feedly. First feedly doesn't work if you use Internet Explorer, which until recently was me. You also have a download an add-on to use feedly. This really doesn't take a lot of time, except the first few times I tried to use feedly my computer would disable it, and I would have to redownload. Since I've figured out the issue and made sure feedly is enabled, I haven't had issue with it.

When I found out about google reader going away, I definitely had a mild freak out about what I was going to do. And once I figured out there were other options, I wanted to know what was best. Except I didn't have an instead answer and had to figure out which was best for me, by trying these two out. I'm in no ways saying you have to be using feedly over bloglovin, but I would at least look into your options.

Did the closing of google reader freak you out as well? And what are you currently using to keep track of which blog posts to read?

Edited to add: So while I was finishing up this post and taking screen shots I accidentally marked 500 posts or so as read in feedly, and there's no undo button. Granted some of this has to do with not being completely familiar with all the buttons. And there actually was a prombt to have it ask, "Are you Sure?" which I removed because I was sure I wouldn't need it. Basically as happy as I was with feedly, while writing this I'm not nearly as happy now. Feedly does at least have a history which shows posts you've read, so by elimination I can assume which posts I haven't read. But it does mean I've just wasted about an hour, figuring that out. Except, of course, if I was in bloglovin, those posts would have been marked as read initially based on how the data transferred, and again after 14 days, so really which is worse? But I guess the moral is, as happy as you may be with something new, be sure you actually know how to use it!


  1. Oh no! Sorry you accidentally hit mark all as read. I was going to say that feedly always prompts me when I hit mark all as read but I see now that you removed that prompt.

    I actually REALLY like Feedly. I think I'm actually going to end up liking it more than Google Reader! The layout just works better for me.

  2. Ooops! That is so annoying to mark them as read before you read them!

    I wasn't using google reader - blogger blogs I get updates through the blogger main page, everything else through twitter updates or keeping them in my favorites file...archaic, i know!

  3. I really wish I would have read this entire post rather than just skim it before I organized all my blogs in bloglovin. I hate that I can't read the entire post right on the page. Signing up for feedly now. Also I just came to this post via blog lovin and it wouldn't let me comment I had to open your page w/out blog loving to be able to leave this. So annoying.

  4. I'm really really annoyed with google reader going away. I'm not a fan of bloglovin at all so I'm going to have to look into this one!