Instapaper pushes pause for GDPR
Instapaper, a popular 'Read it Later' service sent out an email in the dead of the European night alerting users there that they won't be able to access their accounts beginning today, blaming the GDPR regulation that comes into effect on Friday for the blockade.
Beginning sometime today, the company plans to implement an IP-based block that will deny access to EU consumers. What's bizarre about this move is that nobody expected Instapaper to have a problem complying, and it's owned by Pinterest, which hasn't said anything about the sudden shutdown.
Worse still, Instapaper isn't forthcoming with any further reasons, or why it ignored the more than two years worth of notice it received from the European Union. Sure, most people are scrambling to be GDPR-ready today, but this is a level of shady that casts suspicion onto the company.
Not only that, it's basically unnecessary. Instapaper simply needs to make moves to comply, and be transparent about its data and trajectory, not have all the answers; instead, it's going dark for people in Europe.
The only other large company I can think of that's shuttering a service is Unroll.me, but we at least new that company was already doing shady nonsense with data, which leaves me wondering: what was Instapaper up to behind the scenes?
I've been direct messaging with the founder of Instapaper who won't provide any information other than that "the work wouldn't have been done in time" but stopped short of explaining what work and how Instapaper's block circumvents the requirement to not process data retroactively as well.
You have today to get out your data before you're blocked, and to keep accessing you could probably use a VPN. Or just switch to Pocket. Either way, it's unclear how long the wait is, so it's best to look elsewhere for now.
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Ah, the 'pivot to original content' phase of being a media company.