I hate doing things twice. There are not many things that bug me but doing things twice has always been one of my pet peeves. Like many people I use Google Reader to read RSS feeds and as TechCrunch pointed out Google Readers social features are lacking. I was often reading posts in Google Reader and then tweeting them out to my followers but that meant visiting the original blog post, then tweeting it out. There had to be an easier, faster way for me to tweet the blog posts that I thought were interesting and might interest my followers?
Google Reader does offer a simple method to share posts that you like. Simply click the Share link at the bottom of a post and Google Reader shares the post with your friends on Google. Those shared items are placed on a new web page that you can find by clicking the Shared items under your stuff on the Google Reader menu in the top left. For example here is my shared items page. Google creates an RSS/Atom feed for this page so people can subscribe to it and follow what stories you are sharing.
Since Google Reader creates an RSS feed of your shared posts all it takes is a way to take that RSS feed and have it tweeted out on Twitter. The easiest way to publish an RSS feed to Twitter is to use Twitterfeed. Once you login to Twitterfeed you just need to setup a new feed that uses the RSS feed URL of your Google Reader shared items. Twitterfeed even allows you to prefix each tweet with some text. I simply added “Reading – ” to mine. Now everytime I share an item on Google Reader it is automatically tweeted out to my followers on Twitter.
Now you do not have to do things twice to tweet an interesting post you read in Google Reader. There is also the added benefit that if you read an interesting post on your mobile device, you can share it and have it tweeted out without leaving Google Reader mobile. I imagine you can do with with other web based feed readers. Give it a try with your favourite feed reader and leave a comment about how you share your favourite blog posts from your reader.