Users wanting to port their content to another RSS (rich site summary) feed can use Google Takeout to move it over the next four months.
The move is part of a massive "spring cleaning" that Google began in 2011 and which has nuked about 70 of its wide array of products.
Reader, and RSS feeds in general, remain popular with active, Web-savvy users who rely upon them to pull together the best of the Internet in one easy-to-read stream. But they never caught on among more casual users content to visit their favorite sites or rely on friends on social media to share interesting posts.
On petition site Change.org, more than 46,000 people had signed the petition "Google: Keep Google Reader Running." - "Our confidence in Google's other products -- Gmail, YouTube, and yes, even Plus -- requires that we trust you in respecting how and why we use your other products," wrote Dan Lewis, of New York City, who created the petition. "This isn't just about our data in Reader.
Zite (which is owned by CNN) lets users create a feed based on their interests then refine the feed by voting content up or down. It uses Google Reader info to help select content. Rival Flipboard allows users to directly import their Google Reader content, a point they expressly made in a post Thursday.