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Google Will Shut Down RSS Feed Reader (SocialTimes)
Google will shut off Reader, its RSS feed aggregator, in July, the company said on Wednesday. The company cited declining usage as a rationale for shuttering the service, even while it acknowledged that Reader has a “loyal following.” CNET Google Reader lets users subscribe to and read feeds from all manner of publishers, in a format that resembles an email inbox. Loved by information junkies, the nearly eight-year-old service was once among the most popular ways of tracking large numbers of news sites, blogs and other publishers. VentureBeat Reader will officially close down on July 1 and without many other options out there, it leaves us wondering what will happen to RSS overall. In addition to Reader, Google is also shutting down its Google Voice app for Blackberry. Business Insider Google Reader is used ferociously by people in the media and technology insiders, who depend on them to keep track of a large number of news sources. So they’re very upset, judging by the stunned reaction on Twitter using #savegooglereader. Mashable Google says it is shuttering Reader and deprecating or shutting down a number of other services as part of the company’s “spring cleaning” initiative — one that seeks to help the company focus on the features the need the most use. In addition to Google Reader, the company is also ceasing sales and updates for the Snapseed Desktop apps for Mac and Windows and shutting down its CalDAV API.
Facebook Begins Rolling Out New, Customizable Timeline (AllFacebook)
The redesign for timeline has been tested in New Zealand and other parts of the world, but Facebook announced Wednesday that it will start officially rolling out the new look to select users immediately. Much like Facebook’s updated news feed, the goal for timeline is to reduce clutter and place more options in the hands of users. The Next Web Included in this update are redesigned sections that now allow you to have one place to add music, movies, TV shows and books that are of interest to that user. Additionally, starting Wednesday, the social network gave users a cleaner Timeline layout, with posts on the right side of the timeline and photos, music, and other recent activity on the left. AllThingsD Facebook really wants developers to build apps into its platform. Users can now manually tweak which apps they want displayed on their pages, while apps get more space on the page in other areas, with some now appearing under a user’s “About” tab.
Pope Francis Takes to Twitter Right Away (USA Today)
The papal @pontifex Twitter account came back to life Wednesday afternoon with one tweet sent out shortly after Pope Francis, formerly known as Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, recited the Lord’s Prayer and a Hail Mary at the Vatican. “HABEMUS PAPAM FRANCISCUM” — We have Pope Francis — had been retweeted almost 65,000 times late Wednesday. The account has almost 1.8 million followers and counting.
Photo and Video Grid View for User Galleries Returns to Twitter.com (AllTwitter)
In other Twitter news, the social network has started rolling out a grid view feature for user photo and video galleries on Twitter.com, and users can click the “View all photos and videos” on Profile pages to to view the media content of that user which will display in a grid. This isn’t really a new feature from Twitter – the grid view-style gallery was an option on Twitter.com that premiered in August of 2011 before being quietly phased out toward the end of last summer, with no official announcement – or explanation – ever made.
‘Veronica Mars’ Kickstarter Hits $2 Million Goal on First Day (The Daily Dot)
We’ve just solved the mystery of the biggest-ever movie Kickstarter. The fundraiser for a movie version of cult show “Veronica Mars” hit its $2 million goal in less than a day. It shattered the record for the fastest project to reach $1 million in funding, hitting that mark in about five hours.
Finally! Netflix Debuts Facebook Integration to See What Your Friends are Watching (LostRemote)
Netflix is beginning to roll out its much-anticipated social features powered by Facebook’s social graph. And it goes beyond simply sharing stuff on Facebook.
Mars Curiosity’s Secrets for Social Media Success (Space.com)
The Mars Rover Curiosity’s social media team came to South by Southwest in Austin, Texas, to tell how they make Curiosity a household name. Her ascent to social media stardom was won by her dramatic descent onto the Red Planet.
Twitter Appoints Adam Messinger as Chief Technology Officer, a Role Left Vacant Since 2011 (TechCrunch)
AllThingsD reports that Twitter has appointed Adam Messinger as CTO, a position that has been vacant since Greg Pass left the company. This would make Messinger Twitter’s second CTO.
Social Media Reach Helps, but Quality Counts More (Adweek)
Quality trumps quantity. That was the key takeaway from a discussion around social media Wednesday at the 4A’s Transformation conference in New Orleans. In other words, it’s great for a brand to have a lot of fans on Facebook, but it’s even better if they’re actively sharing your brand’s content in the News Feed.