How I’m reading blogs and such

I’ve had a few conversations recently about blogs and Dreamwidth and RSS feeds and how to go about reading them in the modern era, so I thought it was worth posting about the app I’ve been using.

It’s called News Explorer, and I should start by noting that it’s Apple-ecosystem-only, so it won’t be useful to y’all Windows and Linux users.

I don’t have a particular reason to recommend it over other RSS readers. (I feel like I tried a couple of others and liked this one best, but I don’t remember why I liked it best.) And it’s not free (though there’s a two-week-free-trial version for Mac)—it costs $10 for Mac, and $5 for all-Apple-mobile-devices-together. But it does pretty much what I want it to do, and syncs over iCloud, so I can use it on Mac and iOS and iPadOS.

I use it to read the following:

  • Friends’ Dreamwidth posts.
  • Friends’ blog posts.
  • A Substack subscription. (I just found out I could use it for Substack; I’ll likely add others soon.)

I might use it for Patreon posts if I could, but it looks like Patreon doesn’t provide an RSS feed for text posts.

Newspapers also offer various sorts of RSS feeds. I don’t think I would want to read news in this app, but there may be some feeds from news venues that I would want to se there; for example, I just added the feed for Alexandra Petri’s column.

Anyway, I don’t see the world going back to blogs anytime soon, but it is a nice way to be able to keep up with friends who don’t post on FB or Mastodon (or at least don’t post much in those places).

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