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Feedburner Subscriber Counters – A Glitch?

Posted By Darren Rowse 4th of November 2007 RSS 0 Comments

A few hours back when the Feedburner RSS counter chicklet that thousands of blogs use to show their subscriber numbers updated bloggers everywhere scratched their heads in wonder.

I’ve had about 10 emails in the last couple of hours from many asking if I’d noticed the difference – a massive slump in numbers.

I suspect it’s just a glitch in Feedburner’s system – or a glitch in one of the major News Aggregators reporting. It’s happened before and I don’t really think that there’s any reason to panic as it looks like it is something that has hit everyone with the chicklet (from what I can see it’s hitting people by between 40-50%).

Thanks to everyone for the heads up – David was first.

Update: looking over Feedburner stats it seems that it’s the ‘Google Feedfetcher’ stats that are not showing up.

Here are yesterday’s breakdown of stats for my Digital Photography School feed:


Here are the stats for today:


As you can see – it’s the Google Feedfetcher stats that are missing today. From memory this happened once before and was rectified the following day.

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.
  • Yep, happened to me too. One time it showed 0 subscribers but I don’t worry much since these kind of things happens. You just have to wait a day.

  • Meg

    Yep, 44% down here

  • Hi Darren

    Just checked my feedburner stats, and the ones that seem to be missing are all the Google reader ones.

  • Down by over 50% on all 5 blogs burned with feedburner.

  • Yeah, I had the same thing happen to me – I was wondering if it might just be because not so many people were accessing their RSS readers. Some days mine is half what it is other days; I hadn’t been sure if this was just that sometimes my blog is less interesting than others.

  • Yep – 45% drop here.

  • Dang! A minute late to post it earlier than you :D

    Anyway, here it is Darren:

    I’ve also posted why did that big drop happened.

  • Even I lost many of them suddenly. The number came down 100 even though in reality it isn’t so..

    They did that before too when my subscriber count went to ZERO..but they were quick to bring that back to normal..

    lets see when this comes to normal!!

  • When I saw my chicklet this morning I really thought I lost some reader, but then I checked my feeds and I can see that Problogger and a lot of other blog are having this problem.

    Thanks for the notice :D

  • To be frank i saw the same on shoemoney’s blog couple hours back and felt his RSS contest was all fake :p because i saw his feedburner count today after the contest completed. :p
    Good to know it was a glitch and not a scam contest. :D

  • Yep I lost my google readers as well, and when you have as little subscribers as me it makes it even worse. Looking forward to it coming back cause I feel lonely.

  • I sure hope you’re right Darren. I also experienced the drop and hope this will get fixed after a day or two. :)

  • Low

    Darren, this is off topic but don’t you need 1 day off? Where’s Skellie?

  • On my Feedburner stats it’s Google Feedfetcher that’s not reporting. The Google Desktop numbers are still there.

  • Yes, I’ve just had a 50% drop. I’m glad it isn’t that I have annoyed my readers away.

    *sighs in relief*

  • YEah, one of my site has also a small drop – it usually maintains in a certain amount for days…

    maybe it’s a glitch or maybe they are clearing up inactive subscribers..

  • ouch..i get the answer here. I was wondering why johnchow feed readers was showing massive drops in number.

  • it doesn’t just happen to feedburner.
    There is a similar service in China named feedsky,it missed the Google Feedfetcher stats also.

  • Ivy

    Wow, this is a huge relief. I thought that half my readers had packed up and left! Thanks for the tip.

  • hi darren…
    same happened to my blog today as well!

    down to 109 from 198… not the big numbers but still someting ~40%+.

    as far as I can see in feedburner stats they completely dropped the GOOGLE READER — so I guess they are working things out while integration happens.

    my guess ist that it will be up again soon…!!!

  • I lost 35%. I am glad that you wrote this post. I thought that I just suck.

    I am glad that I might not such :)

  • Same thing happened to my blog. Yesterday I had 1000+ readers, today the chicklet is showing 650. I checked feedburner, and google readers are missing.

  • I have just checked my feedburner stats, strange but my Google Fetcher stat does appear and with only 1 subscriber. wow what a shame. hehehe..

  • Something is really up with my feed reader, neither of your latest two posts have come through it.

    I noticed this drop too but as most of my subscribers use Bloglines the drop was small enough to make me think I’d done something to annoy everybody. I was pretty releived to find that wasn’t the case!

  • This happened to me as well. The number of subscriber to my blog droped by 15% which never happened to me before.

  • I think this is a big issue. Stats = blog credibility

  • I noticed a nearly 50% drop in my stats. Looks like a glitch for sure.

  • it has happened 2 times now at night around 11 PM (one happened last night the other one awhile ago ) that when I want to come to this blog by typing the url directly on the addess bar, the site is down. I get an error “page cannot be found” which is a genetic message from internet explorer we a webpage cannot be reach.

  • Thank goodness! I was wondering this morning what happened because I dropped by over 50%. I hadn’t checked my logs yet, and came right here, knowing you would provide some insight…guess I was right!

    Thanks Darren!

  • Yep, it happens to me too. I got nearly 40% dropped. I thought it was because of weekend.

  • It sounds so embarassing that a service of such magnitude has a glitch. It sometimes becomes a shame and then later we all get used to it. Like Windows!

  • Yip I noticed a drop in my readers as well. I just thought it was because they had not logged into their readers to read my blog. As you can see I’m not really clear on how the reader stats really work.

    Darren, is there a way to get a list the individuals that subscribe to my particular feeds. For the purpose of linking to them or involving them in a special contest.

  • I have seen this happen 3 times in the last 3 months! We lost almost 60% of our readers over night and then they come back 10% higher the next day! Lets see what happens tomorrow… We have our counter running on our site.

    Thanks for the information from and nice site.

  • OH! I’m so hoping that this is just a glitch. Two days ago I was at 150 and I’m at 94 today!

  • It was really funny to see TechCrunch go from 600 K to 394K in a couple of hours. I thought it was hard to lose 20 some subscribers, imagine over 200,000!!!

  • Well thtat’s good to know! Mine went down quite a bit as well, but I didn’t think much of it at the time.

    thanks for posting this info

  • I don’t have to much subscribers but the same happened to me: 114 to 70!!!
    As you say Darren, maybe “it’s just a glitch in Feedburner’s system “.
    I hope so :)

  • Funny thing is I just, went to blogging fingers and saw that the RSS subscribers had halved from 200 to 100. – I thought people don’t hang around when a blog is sold. :)

    But, given the importance of RSS subscribers for selling blogs, it is significant for bloggers

  • Feedburner’s blog now says there was a problem with the Google feedfetcher stats this morning.

  • I know that I don’t have a whole lot of visitors, but the ones that I have, I’d like to keep :)

  • yeah mine stats dropped about 50% in two of my three blogs

  • It’s like taking a trip down memory lane seeing all these website chicklets showing lower numbers. Makes you remember how sites used to be a few years ago :-)

  • Thanks for getting all of the information. I though my readers thought my writing was worthless – what a relief.

  • I only lost some 10% of the subscribers I got from my other blog. But then again it might be because only 10% are google readers.

  • Ok, I feel better now. I thought my fwiends maybe didn’t like me anymore. :-(

    Not that I’m happy this happened. Just relieved this is the explanation as to why my subscriber count dropped considerably overnight.

    Checked mine after reading this and it is the Google readers that are missing from my count, too.

  • Ivy

    Just to check – is anyone having drops in their Google analytics stats as well?

  • jen

    Wow, that’s a huge slump. For those of us who don’t have that many subscribers to start with a drop of two thirds is a lot. I’m glad you told us otherwise I would have freaked out, especially as I moved blog providers and hosts on the weekend.

  • My feedburner stats are down by half as well :(

  • Feedburner RSS stats going back to normal now in some sites. :). Other sites will follow. :)