Before the invention of newspaper deliver services, if you wanted the daily news, you had to visit a newsstand.  And if you wanted more than one newspaper, you were having to go to more than one newsstand every morning to purchase the papers (in hopes that they were still available by the time you arrived).

But then things changed.  Enter the newspaper subscription service.

Wake up.  Walk to your front porch.  Bam…you’ve got your newspapers waiting on you every day.  Genius.

Convenience for you.  Guaranteed service for you.  Guaranteed sales for the newspaper industry.

But when news began to be offered increasingly online (through media outlets and blogs), we as a consumer industry fell right back into the days of walking to multiple newsstands.  We would peruse multiple sites, visit countless blogs, and still not get all of the great news that was available.  Because for every site you checked, there were 1,000 others you didn’t check.  And it just wasn’t feasible to keep up with all of the blogs you found helpful, because you would forget to check them for a few days (or a few weeks), and when you finally remembered, you were way behind.

It’s time to make the internet work for us.

Google Reader

Enter the automated delivery service for digital media: RSS (Really Simple Syndication).  Google Reader is my feed reader of choice.  It gathers all of the new content from the blogs and sites that I visit, and keeps me from having to visit each of those sites individually.  And I can read this content on any computer or mobile phone by simply logging into my account.  Here’s how to get started:

1. Register for a Google Reader account.

2. Come back to my site and click the “RSS” link.

The next step is to visit the sites you love, and look for this symbol: Just click on that button (to the right), and it will prompt you to subscribe to their content.  Simple.

Here are some of the small group sites (some not solely focused on group life) that I have on my Google Reader:

Google Reader is free.  And it keeps you from having to visit multiple newsstands every day.

Did I miss any blogs that are small groups-related?