Feedly wanted to track protests and riots for companies, until they got destroyed on Twitter
Feedly, the popular RSS feed service, recently came under fire for a now-deleted blog post (here is an Internet Wayback Machine link) in which they discussed using AI models to track protests, riots, and rallies. Many people were concerned that this technology could be used by employers and corporations to engage in union busting, worker surveillance, and strikebreaking.
Tracking the ever-changing nature of protests can be a daunting task.
They help security analysts track riots, strikes, and rallies that pose a risk to a company’s assets and employees.
With these AI models, tracking protests related to specific geographies, socio-political events, or corporations becomes more streamlined and efficient.
While Feedly responded to the backlash on Twitter and Mastodon, many people were not satisfied with their cookie-cutter response and are choosing to cancel their subscriptions.
Shortly after the backlash on Twitter and Mastodon, Feedly began auto-replying with the following:
Sorry for the disappointment, [First Name]. The blog post should have been clearer. This is used to notify employees of a potential security risk if they travel or work at locations where violence emerges. The content was misleading, so deleted.
I haven’t been a Feedly customer for years but if I were I would absolutely be pulling my RSS feeds from it and going to somewhere like Inoreader, Feedbin, or NetNewsWire.
If you are a Feedly user and are concerned about this issue, you can follow this guide on how to export your OPML file and switch to a different RSS feed service that does not use AI for potentially nefarious purposes.