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Sunday, May 28, 2023

FeedBurner Addresses Concerns Over Google Buyout

Scary Feedburner Message At Login from Jeremy Schoemaker reported that FeedBurner placed a new message on their login page that read, in part, that you have until June 15th to opt out of “allowing Google to service your account.”

Jeremy, as did others, did not know exactly how to take this. The first concern is that Google is now going to own your feed. The second concern is that if you did not want Google to own your feed, your feed URLs would be lost forever. Why? If you opt out, your account will be terminated and permanently deleted including all your statistical data and history.

I emailed Dick Costolo, the CEO of FeedBurner, who explained that this was just legalese. He had Rick Klau, FeedBurner’s former VP, add a comment at ShoeMoney.com and the Search Engine Roundtable explaining the change. In short, this legal agreement is just to tell feed owners that Google now owns FeedBurner.

Didn’t intend for it to sound scary, we were going more for clarity and no ambiguity. And as a (non-practicing) lawyer, I can tell you that loosy-goosey isn’t a popular class in law school. 😉

Bottom line, this is just an indication that as a legal matter, “FeedBurner, Inc.” is now owned/operated by Google, Inc… so, strictly speaking, the privacy policy is now between you and Google. We felt it best to give everyone a period of time to decide whether that’s what they wanted, rather than make it immediate on the day the acquisition closed.

Let me know if you have any other questions.

–Rick Klau
Google (former VP, publisher services, FeedBurner)

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