If you've been reading this blog for a while, you know that my favorite RSS feed reader is Nick Bradbury's FeedDemon. In fact, I liked it so much I awarded it my first Insanely Great Software recognition back in February.
You also know that my initial reaction to the news that Nick had sold his company to NewsGator a couple of months ago was not very positive. That reaction was based largely on my concern that FeedDemon would lose its stand-alone capabilities and become subscription software used to sell NewsGator's services.
Last Wednesday, July 6th, those concerns were realized when Nick announced on his blog that yes, indeed, FeedDemon would become subscription-based software. A careful reading of the related blog post by NewsGator CTO and founder Greg Reinacker, in which he explains the rationale behind the software-by-subscription model, revealed that not only would FeedDemon become subsription software but it would effectively cease working -- you wouldn't be able to retrieve any new content -- if you allowed your subscription to expire. To me, it looked like the end of FeedDemon as we know it.
But, fortunately, that's not the end of the story. One reason I've always been a fan of Nick's software, besides its great design and functionality, is his responsiveness to customers' ideas and concerns.
And the good news is, that hasn't changed.
In his July 6th announcment, Nick acknowledged the decision to switch FeedDemon to a subscription model might cause some concerns, and he asked for feedback from users. Predictably, he got it, and, not surprisingly, the comments were mostly opposed.
Nick and NewsGator really did listen.
On July 8th, not two days after the original announcement, Nick blogged that based on the comments they'd received, the decision had been reconsidered and reversed.
The result is that FeedDemon will be able to take advantage of NewsGator's subscription services, such as server-based synchronization, as long as you continue to pay for the service, but FeedDemon won't stop working if you decide to let the subscription lapse.
This is good news for both FeedDemon and its users. I'm now looking forward to trying out the new services, knowing I still have choice down the road. Kudos to both Nick and NewsGator for getting it right.