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Feedly Forces Its Users To Create Google+ Profiles 251

Posted by timothy
from the rapids-pulling-you-downstream dept.
somegeekynick writes "Feedly users, a lot of whom migrated from the now-defunct Google Reader, are now finding out that they will not be able to login to the service without a Google+ Profile. In a blog post from Edwin Khodabakchian, which was posted almost at the same time the change rolled out, the reason for the change is stated as following Google's own move from using OAuth to Google+ for authentication. What has riled up a lot of users, as can be read in the comments, is that this change has come without warning and a lot of feeds are now being 'held hostage' by Feedly, especially for users who are reluctant to create Google+ Profiles."
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Feedly Forces Its Users To Create Google+ Profiles

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  • by wiredlogic (135348) on Friday November 08, 2013 @08:20PM (#45373879)

    We also understand that some people would prefer to have more identity choices. So we have been testing twitter, facebook and wordpress login options. We will be rolling them out over the next 7 weeks.

    Apparently they are too busy looking for other ways to force you to have 3rd party accounts to realize the obvious solution and roll their own authentication system.

    • by istartedi (132515)

      Programming is hard. Let's go shopping. [codinghorror.com]

      There are two sides to this of course. Reinventing the wheel is bad. Outsourcing rifle production to your enemies is bad. There are a lot of things in between those two extremes.

    • by Bogtha (906264)

      As a user, what benefit would them having their own authentication system give me? I've already got a Google account. I've already got a Twitter account. I've already got a Facebook account. If they provide those options, that's one less moving part for me to manage. If they create their own authentication system instead, I've got yet another thing to set up.

      Even if we assume that prospective users have none of the above, they've still got to set up an account somewhere. Why should they authenticat

  • by Desler (1608317) on Friday November 08, 2013 @08:21PM (#45373883)

    Well thats one way to keep pumping up the Google+ numbers with more inactive accounts.

    • by icebike (68054) on Friday November 08, 2013 @09:49PM (#45374481)

      Well, first, you missed the bit about it being retracted.

      But besides that, Feedly has nothing to gain by pumping up Google+. (Unless there is some money changing hands under the table).

      Google is out of the feed reader business, so all you really need is an account at Feedly. They would like to pawn off the
      authentication server stuff onto someone else. But they are just serving up news feeds. There is really no reason to
      have any account details at all on hand, and they could just hand out random numbers for accounts.

      The problem here is that Feedly is finding it just as hard to monetize RSS as Google did, because, quite frankly, RSS was never
      intended to be monetized. It was intended to bring you to feeder's web site.

      But once you have things like Feedly and before that Google Reader scraping the full stories linked to the feeds, it becomes unprofitable
      for feedly, and unprofitable for the Feed sites, because nobody visits the sites anymore.

      I read a couple dozen feeds. On some feeds I never visit the site. On others, I have my reader (not feedly) set up to automatically go to
      the site, scrape the page via Google Mobilizer and show me just the text. No pictures, adds or any of that.
      The upside, those things aren't fetched from the site, saving them bandwidth. The downside, the site makes no money from me.

       

      • by Nerdfest (867930)

        I would think targeted ads would be a nice juicy way to monetize it. You not only know what topics a person is interested in, but even what specific articles. I can't think of a better way to determine a users interests. It still amazes me that Google dropped it,

  • Not a Story (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 08, 2013 @08:22PM (#45373903)

    From TFA:

    [Update 2: The change has been rolled back: you can now go to http://cloud.feedly.com and login using the old Google Authentication mechanism. The main lesson we learned here is that user should control how they want to login to login to their feedly. We will make sure not to forget this. Have a good week end].

    Nothing to see here. Move along.

    • Re:Not a Story (Score:4, Insightful)

      by rudy_wayne (414635) on Friday November 08, 2013 @08:55PM (#45374155)

      From TFA:

      [Update 2: The change has been rolled back: you can now go to http://cloud.feedly.com/ [feedly.com] and login using the old Google Authentication mechanism. The main lesson we learned here is that user should control how they want to login to login to their feedly. We will make sure not to forget this. Have a good week end].

      Nothing to see here. Move along.

      Until they try to figure out another way to force this on people.

      Google's ultimate goal is simple. You can't just use only Gmail or only Youtube or whatever. If you want to use one service, you have to use them all.

      • Frankly the YouTube move is nothing but good for content producers who actually want to make money and be taken seriously... Let alone build a functioning community for their product.

        • by game kid (805301)

          If you're talking about forcing YouTube commenters to use Google+, then lol. YouTube comments sucked, but at least they were generally well-threaded suck (when YouTube itself was displaying them properly and not shuffling the comments in its own...special ways).

          When I peek at the newly Plus-ified comment sections...oh god. Hashtags. Mere retweets. No cohesive threading at all. No change in the level of anecdotal GIFT proofs (because [a] anonymity is not the true problem and [b] Real Name harassment onl

      • by Nerdfest (867930)

        You can still use each service under a different account, although it would be a pain in the ass. Having the stuff integrated is actually convenient for many people.

    • by Noughmad (1044096)

      Wait, let me get this straight. Logging in with Google using the old mechanism is fine. Logging in with Google using Google+ is bad. I've always thought that the outrage is about giving your data to Google, but that's not the case here? Basically, it's just "Everything Google does is great, but strap a non-alphanumeric character to the name, and it's the spawn of Satan"?

  • by TheDarkener (198348) on Friday November 08, 2013 @08:24PM (#45373927)

    I'm f***ing sick of Google and their integration of Google+ into Youtube (and obviously their other, and 3rd party services). I don't like Google+. I like Youtube (less and less these days, however). I don't use GMail, or any other Google service (besides search when DuckDuckGo doesn't find me what I want). It's like they're trying to force-feed us their horrible social network via proxy (no pun intended). NO I DO NOT WANT TO POST MY YOUTUBE COMMENTS ON MY DESOLATE GOOGLE+ ACCOUNT. Just keep them separate, they were never meant to be tied together.

    • by Joining Yet Again (2992179) on Friday November 08, 2013 @09:03PM (#45374219)

      If geeks had 1% of the organisational skill of a bunch of illiterate factory workers at the beginning of the 20th century, stuff like this - and almost all of our First World problems - would be trivial to deal with.

      For this one, my suggestion would be for everyone nagged to create a G+ page to fill their page with dildos and friend only Google executives. Use competitor Facebook to spread the word. Once a few million people have done this, G+ becomes a joke.

      • by hibiki_r (649814)

        That only works if you actually like their competitor. If you don't, then you see that Google is mostly copying their competitor, who has been promoting using their system for 3rd party forums for quite a while now. Many places have stopped taking comments without a Facebook account.

        Why do you think Facebook, well known for shitting on people's privacy settings, is any better than Google?

        • by tlhIngan (30335) <slashdot@wSLACKWAREorf.net minus distro> on Saturday November 09, 2013 @03:40AM (#45375809)

          Why do you think Facebook, well known for shitting on people's privacy settings, is any better than Google?

          "Privacy settings" is a marketing term..

          There is NO such thing as privacy online. Posting something online is equivalent to posting it to the world - it's like keeping a secret by telling someone. And if you're not going to tell anyone, why post it online?

          The only reason why "privacy" is an option is because Facebook and everyone else knows that people won't post anything otherwise. So they invent "privacy settings" to trick (yes, trick) everyone into revealing things that they rationally won't.

          The old adage (from decades ago) goes "never put online anything you don't want to read in the New York Times". Or I guess, the Google front page these days.

          Nothing's changed, just Facebook has managed to sucker in a bunch of gullible people into thinking there's any semblance of privacy online. And that doesn't even cover the need to monetize your information. Just putting it online is dangerous enough.

      • by Nerdfest (867930)

        That would be seriously awesome.

      • Well, the big difference is that geeks (at least those paid to work as geeks, and by that I don't count first/second level tech support drones) are on a pretty good wicket (i.e. easily the top 20-30% of wages).

        Also, er, these 'first world problems' are a lot less serious than working conditions in the industrial revolution....

        not surprising that most people (even geeks) don't give a rats

      • ...fill their page with dildos and friend only Google executives....

        Wish I could get away with doing something like this at work. Some HR genius has commissioned a Corporate Social Network, and while they apparently can't order you to join up, they seem to have licence to nag you about it ad infinitum.

    • It helps to provide real examples of why a single sign on is not wanted.

      For me, I don't want the NSA using my compromised info to log into any of my other accounts. A break one breaks all policy is an Identity Theif's goldmine. Google +, Facebook, Bank of America, Bank of Nova Scotia, E-Trade, Ebay, Amazon..... There is a reason not all my eggs are in one basket.

      • by Noughmad (1044096)

        That still doesn't explain the outrage over YouTube - Gmail - G+ integration. All the accounts are with Google, and they know everything from all three services. So does NSA. And don't think thay can't identify if you log to their different services with different accounts but with the same IP address.

    • by norite (552330) on Friday November 08, 2013 @09:22PM (#45374317) Journal

      Try this:

      https://www.startpage.com/ [startpage.com]

      It uses google, but even google don't know who you are when you go through these guys :)

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward

        I couldn't get to the whois information of www.startpage.com. Could you?

        Funny enough, whois doesn't report any info on nsa.gov, either.

    • I saw this video earlier today. It seems strangely appropriate.

      Dear Google... [youtube.com]

      I have to say, I sort of agree. I barely use Google services so it doesn't effect me too much but they do seem to be pushing their Google+ product pretty heavily, and even I find it a bit annoying. I don't know if it's really popular or not (I have no interest in it); I just wish they wouldn't try to shove it in my face so much.

      And btw Google, Ablehard Franklestein Snortheimer III /is/ my real name; who are you to say it isn't?

    • by couchslug (175151)

      No need to use a Google account to interact with Youtube that isn't a throwaway in the first place.

    • by Arker (91948)

      I am too. I noticed recently youtube has a picture it scraped up from a google+ account I never consented to be made, never told it to use, and really it's a mystery where it came from or who it is. But it's now me, and I cant get rid of it. Might just delete my youtube account as a result.

      Google used to be useful but lately it's about the creepiest thing on the web (for me, at least, since I can and do avoid facebook entirely.)

      • by swillden (191260)

        I am too. I noticed recently youtube has a picture it scraped up from a google+ account I never consented to be made, never told it to use, and really it's a mystery where it came from or who it is. But it's now me, and I cant get rid of it. Might just delete my youtube account as a result.

        It's not a photo of you? And you can't delete it? How can you not get rid of it? That sounds like a bug. If you want to send me details, I'll look into it a bit and file a bug report.

        It would also be a good idea if you used the "send feedback" link on one of the relevant pages. You won't get any response, generally, but those feedback submissions do get a lot of attention.

    • by tgv (254536)

      You're right. I deleted my Google+ account, and consequently took down my YouTube "channel". I had one vid with 80,000 views, and some 50,000 more in a few others, but who gives a damn? I am sick and tired of all the greedy bastards that cannot take no for an answer.

      Let them leech on the unwashed like the a 19th century industrial tycoon.

  • Use Google to search for an alternative you can use on your Android phone and sign up to it with your Gmail address.

    If you have an android phone/a youtube account/ or a gmail address you have a g+ account.
    • by tepples (727027) <tepples AT gmail DOT com> on Friday November 08, 2013 @10:48PM (#45374767) Homepage Journal

      Use Google to search for an alternative you can use on your Android phone

      So what handheld computer should I use if I want to write my own software but don't want Google

      If you have an android phone/a youtube account/ or a gmail address you have a g+ account.

      No, you have a Google account. Google is requiring certain users who already have a Google account to add a Google+ profile to their Google account and associate all activity on their Google account with their Google+ profile.

      • So what handheld computer should I use if I want to write my own software but don't want Google

        An iOS device, a Windows phone/tablet or any of the Android phones on this list [linuxonandroid.org].

      • by Nerdfest (867930)

        Use an Android phone running CyanogenMod or any of the AOSP variants. even off the shelf standard Android does not require you to have a Google account. Install software from Amazon, F-Droid, or develop your own. Android is not hard-tied to Google. They seem to want an open internet so they can show ads to people without fighting against a series of closed walled gardens.

  • ....letting the websites you frequent spy on you across the Internet since 2006.
    • by manu0601 (2221348)
      When SSO protocols are open, you can host your own identity provider, or at least have someone you trust host it. Once protocols are proprietary, this is not possible anymore.
      • by tepples (727027)
        Stack Overflow and other Stack Exchange sites use OpenID, an open SSO protocol first introduced by LiveJournal.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 08, 2013 @08:52PM (#45374125)

    Feedly's login policy was what forced me to use Inoreader (www.inoreader.com), the only reader I was aware of that provided a standalone login. And boy am I happier for it. Light, fast and simple yet also feature rich. Just like the Google reader I used to know and love....

    • by gigaherz (2653757)
      I use The Old Reader [theoldreader.com], but I do login with OAuth. As far as I know, they have their own login box, I just don't use it.
      • by CastrTroy (595695)
        Or, you could just forgo cloud services all together and set up Tiny-Tiny RSS [tt-rss.org] on your own home server or shared hosting account. I find it works great. Web interface is a little slow, but I mostly use it from my phone anyway. Their official party line is that they don't support shared hosting, but I didn't have any problems getting it to work.
        • by tepples (727027)

          set up Tiny-Tiny RSS [tt-rss.org] on your own home server

          And lose home Internet for 12 months if discovered.

          Their official party line is that they don't support shared hosting

          I don't see how that's sustainable with the IPv4 address shortage. I was under the impression that each VPS needed its own IP address, and servers on an IPv6 network still need to be accessible by clients stuck on IPv4-only ISPs.

  • If it required a Hulu+ account, that would be mighty annoying ...
  • by Fragmented_Datagram (233743) on Friday November 08, 2013 @10:12PM (#45374589) Homepage

    I highly recommend setting up the free tt-rss service [tt-rss.org]. There's also a nice mobile client.

    • We need a new standard. Free as in beer, free as in open source, or free as in privacy?

      Or maybe Software as a Service vs. Software as a Business Model?

  • Youtube is now impossible to use... The comments sections have been rendered useless - or about as useless as a wet blanket.
    • Youtube is now impossible to use... The comments sections have been rendered useless - or about as useless as a wet blanket.

      Were they ever useful? Youtube comments make slashdot ACs look like perfect gentlemen, upright and true.

      .

  • I find Feedly far more annoying for other reasons, like the incessant nagging every time I login to upgrade to Feedly Pro, both top-of-screen dismissible alerts, and non-dismissible stuff on the right side of the screen. It's one thing to have a premium service. It's another to repeatedly and constantly pester people about it.

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