As a part of the most recent Google’s spring cleaning some services people rely on are getting closed, most notably – Google Reader. The internet is busy with voicing their dissatisfaction and swears towards Google, but I’m yet to see a post which would be a fitting representation of my view of this situation, hence this post.
First of all, a disclaimer – I have to point out that I’ve been using Google Reader for my personal reading needs and its API for my open-source project. I’d say I am in a position to be more angry than most of the users. The foundation my project is built upon is disappearing after all!
Problem is that no one actually has a right to complain about decisions Google recently made. When people sign up for Google’s services they are not promised the service will be kept available indefinitely. Sure, it is not in Google’s interest to shut down it’s profitable projects, but a company has the right to decide which ones are profitable enough.
It’s not just Google too – any other (free) service might disappear any time without a notice. Especially if correct words are written in their terms of service and they most likely are. If you’re using a free service you should be prepared for its disappearance at the time you need the service the most.
In case one wants more stability, one obviously should pay for the service with money. You may consider hosting a FOSS solution yourself as well. Doing so will require an investment of both time and money, and a complete control of your own data is the reward.