Dear Concerned readers,
Please call an interventionist - I think I am addicted to my Google reader.
For most folks out there who utilize their reader, this post may not be new, but I just can't contain myself any more. I love it, and I cannot remember what my life was like before I added my first subscription.
As someone who is entering an industry where information is a key commodity, it is such an ingenious tool, to have pertinent/relevant/entertaining information collected in one convenient location.
However, with any addiction, their seems to be dark side associated with the reader. First, the anxiety. I have so many subscriptions, that if I don't check them at least once every day they pile up fast. And I have this weird neurosis about leaving items unread in my reader. I feel like I have to at least scroll through all of them, so when I'm done with my reader, there are no unread items. Maybe I'm afraid of missing something, or maybe it's a way to leave things neat and tidy (which I have trouble enough with in real life).
Trying to stay on top of the reader leads to the second aspect of the dark side - time suckage. I'll sit down at my computer with the intention of being productive, and the next thing I know two hours have gone by and I haven't even stared on my homework. It's a procrastinator's dream: You feel like you are being productive, without having to really do anything.
Dark side aside, I still love my reader. I get my local, national and international news there, I know what is happening in and around Portland, I subscribe to some great library blogs and I have a few comic strips come my way.
I think it's a great tool to share with library patrons, too. I know some major databases out there have RSS options, so if you are involved in major research on a particular subject, instead of searching out the information, you can have the information come to you. Or, if a patron is interested in general information on a subject, you can help set up subscriptions with relevant blogs and websites for them.
Here is a list of some of my favorite subscriptions:
So, dear readers, for those of you who indulge in a "Reader," what are some of your favorite subscriptions? And if you don't use Google Reader, what service do you use?