Facebook calling time on RSS?

Those of us who have opted to receive RSS notifications of updates to our Facebook pages woke up this morning to find that the feed was no longer working. Instead of “Alfred has commented on your status” or “Lisa likes your link” we saw “This feed URL is no longer valid. Visit this page to find the new URL, if you have access:”.

Some of my friends were redirected to a 404 error page. I was presented with a totally blank page.

Off I went to Facebook to seek out the RSS feed for my account. Nothing on my Home page and nothing on my Profile. Aha! Perhaps under Account, Account Settings, Notifications? No. Only email and txt options. Hunted around for another 20 minutes and enlightenment eluded me.

I went back to my RSS reader and looked at the properties for the old feed, There was a link to http://www.facebook.com/notifications.php that took me to a page with options for receiving notifications via txt or RSS.

So why isn’t the link to your RSS feed easy to find from your home page, profile or settings? Could it be because Facebook does not like you checking a feed to see if there are updates that you need to respond to? If there aren’t any there is no reason for you to visit the Facebook web site, which means that you do not get the opportunity to see the wonderful advertisements and promotions that are on offer.

6 thoughts on “Facebook calling time on RSS?”

  1. Hi Nick,

    Yes of course – it’s obvious when someone points it out to you 🙂 I’ve now set the FB alerts to go to my gmail. I try and keep my main email account for “proper” correspondence and use gmail for alerts and newsletters. I just have to remember to regularly check gmail!

    Seems strange, though, that having spent so much effort getting stuff out of my email inbox it is all starting to creep back in. Isn’t email supposed to be dead?

  2. is email supposed to be dead like blogs are supposed to be dead?

    Or like blogs killed the MSM, TV killed cinema, radio killed the theatre, the telephone killed the telegraph and the printing press killed the spoken word?

    Is it more about utility or functionality?

  3. Thanks for pointing this out, Karen. I used to have an RSS feed just of friends’ status updates as I found I often missed them if I didn’t check in often enough. This too has gone. The URL was different to the one you give in the blog post (I won’t paste it here as I’m not sure if it contains info about my account!) but suffice to say, the URL now refers me to http://www.facebook.com/statusupdates/ which effectively takes you to the home page of Facebook. Quite annoyed they removed the RSS of status updates. Without warning too!

  4. The menschen over at Facebook decided to change our auth-keys without any prior notice. So we just need to replace the keys in feed URLs with the new ones and we’re golden. They were in-fact so kind, they actually gave us at least 2 new keys which you can find on the RSS links on these pages:

    >> http://www.facebook.com/notifications.php
    >> http://www.facebook.com/posted.php .

    Try which ever one works for your feed, and enjoy … at least until they break it and point you to nowhere!

    – Ankit

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