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Philip Mallegol-Hansen

RSS Is Still Great in 2023

For one reason or another, I never really got around to using RSS during its heyday. Perhaps I was too young to care, or perhaps the sites I followed didn’t implement RSS in any significant way. Whatever the reason, it just never came to play a significant role in my life.

What I do remember is the outcry on the internet (Largely Reddit and Twitter) when Google Reader was discontinued. The end of Reader was declared as the end of RSS, and as someone who was never particularly invested, I simply accepted it as truth and moved on.

However as I’m sitting here a full decade later, the topic of RSS was recently re-introduced to me via a listener submitted question on the excellent ATP podcast.

It turns out that not only is RSS still a thing, but at this point it’s one of those boring mature technologies that don’t get a lot of press, and just work. The best kind of technology.

As the ecosystem of blogs have moved between the various hot technology stacks du jour, the support for RSS has slowly made its way into most of them. At this point even many sites which don’t particularly advertise RSS support (And perhaps the authors aren’t even aware?) appear to just work in my RSS reader when I add them. From small personal blogs, to Substack “publications”, support is more ubiquitous than I expected.

Speaking of my RSS reader, I took the advice provided in the aforementioned episode #517 of ATP and gave NetNewsWire a shot. It’s a simple RSS reader for the Apple ecosystem, with an understandable interface, nice reading experience, and a $0 price tag1.

If you’re at all curious about taking control of your online reading experience, I highly recommend giving RSS a chance. You might just like it.

P.S. This blog, as all Squarespace blogs, of course supports RSS as well. Give it a try!