Thursday, September 14, 2006

Bloglines Doesn't Listen

A while ago, I wanted to read Olya's friends-only LiveJournal posts via Bloglines, an online feed-reader. I found some suggestions online and tried doing basic authentication by adding my username and password before the feed URL. I marked the feed as "private" in Bloglines, hoping that would be good enough.

Apparently, LiveJournal no longer supports that sort of authentication (if they ever did). And Bloglines doesn't support removing the entry!

I sent them an email explaining the situation and asked for them to remove the offending entry from their database. Three days later, they sent me their canned reply about how to claim a feed and delete it. I replied, reminding them that I did not control the feed but that it nevertheless did not really belong in their directory.

Four days after that, they replied again. Now they are telling me I must contact the feed publisher. They really are not paying attention to my specific situation, and I replied telling them as much. I'm annoyed that I've gotten two thoughtless replies and no help thus far.

To double-check my understanding of the situation, I even posted a question to LiveJournal's support system asking someone to confirm (or correct) my thoughts on the matter. Four hours, rather than four days, later, LiveJournal user isabeau confirmed that

this is something that Bloglines needs to take care of, rather than something that LiveJournal can change. The information that you need removed is part of the URL, rather than the contents of the feed itself, and so it's something that is entirely under Bloglines' control.

So the ball's back in Bloglines' court. Not expecting a fast resolution here, but I'll keep at it.

That said, I still use Bloglines multiple times a day to keep up-to-date on the sites and blogs I follow. I still recommend using them, but my impression of them has been tarnished some by this recent experience with their customer support. Good luck if you have issues that need thought to be resolved.