Monday, October 3, 2011

Suddenly, "please support feed2js" at the end of every script

As I write this there is an unexpected emergency note at the bottom of every feed script that runs though
Attn web site owners: Please support Feed2JS!
This note, with this link, appears unwanted on every blog and web site that uses this service. Here's what's happening and how to make the message go away.

Feed2js, one of two web services used in my blog-journey hack, is a labor of love for a programmer named Alan Levine.

This service is useful and popular and has become the victim of its own success. Alan can no longer afford to pay for servers to keep feed2js running. He's asking for donations and looking for a long-term solution.

To let people know about this, he has appended a short message to the end of the output of every script from his site. That means that every user of my hack is suddenly showing that message on their blogs.

This is unpleasant and unfortunate, but I realize that Alan has no other way to contact us. We do not register to use his service and he does not have our email addresses. His unwanted postscript is certainly preferable, from my point of view, to suddenly finding that the service has been pulled completely and that none of the scripts work any more.

The short message links to a full explanation, and if you read it you will discover a simple way to disable the nag message with a few lines of css that you can add to your template. I tip my hat to Alan's thoughtful conduct.

The code is
li.f2jnag {
Adding it suppresses the short note.

I have made a small donation, and urge you to do so too if you use feed2js. But Alan does not seem to feel that continually chasing small donations is a good solution, and he'd like to find a long-term home for his free service. If he can't, we'll all be looking for an alternative.

Alan suggests a few of these in his message, and I'd be curious to hear from anyone who has tried them out.

Update: Alan now says donations have bought five months to find a solution. In the mean time the service works fine and you can remove the nag line with the css above.

Update: As of Thanksgiving 2011, Alan has enough support to continue "at least through June 2013."


  1. You can also go and download his code via his website or google code and run it from your own server... just a thought. it's GNU licensed code and freely available to use yourself.

  2. Chris, that's a good point if you have a server that is hosting a web site that is using feed2js. (And that would take some load from Alan.)

    But it's not clear to me how it's helpful for blogger blogs, which are all hosted by blogger.