Alvan's digital garden

Why I Gave Up Using RSS Reader

Hi there.

Just wanted to quickly write about why I’m not using my RSS reader to read posts anymore.

So, as you probably know, for the past year or so, I have been using Miniflux - an amazing RSS feed aggregator/reader application, almost in a daily basis. But not for past month.

I have finally came to the conclusion that using RSS reader to read posts removes the “personality” from them.

Just like how we have a custom image of everyone we are interacting with in our minds. Maybe someone uses a particular sticker a lot, so that person becomes that particular sticker in your brain. Or maybe someone wears the same style always, so that is how they are engraved to your imagination.

We can also notice the same behavior with social media profile pictures. I’m using Facebook mainly, and profile picture boxes are very small on UI. But it is that small pattern that we remember related person. Usually I find myself not knowing what actually is in that picture, but I somehow imagine that person as that indistinguishable pattern.

Exactly the same with journal and newspapers. The way they style the website/journal is the way we remember those media outlets. That is why they keep same design for ages. It is their personality that they have built all these years.

Well, this is the case with blogs too. Everyone has their custom corners in World Wide Web, and it is their identities. Lets say, it is a website that uses dark colors mainly, and some particular style of art. My brain automatically combines that person’s identity with the vibe their website gives1.

That is why, using RSS reader to read people’s posts makes that activity monotone. At least this is the case with me and my friend. When you see everyone from the same “window”, with the same design and typography, it becomes dull. I wouldn’t love to talk to a person if I’m not seeing their face.

Hmm. While writing this, one advantage of using RSS reader just came to my mind. By eliminating all other details but the content itself, you separate that person’s thoughts from their identity. By doing this, one can objectively evaluate their thoughts and potentially take part in more healthy conversation.

Anyways. Therefore I’m now using my RSS reader as only link aggregator. It gets all these pieces in one place, and I go to every website itself to consume that content. Everyone is special this way. I can feel the personal connection that I build between me, their website, and them.

To conclude, I love seeing custom places on the Internet. At the end of the day, it is all these quirks and edges that differentiate us from any other human being on earth.


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  1. To be honest, it sometimes affects my prejudge too, but I can’t do anything about it, I guess. ↩︎