Remember RSS feeds? Back in the day when Feedburner wasn't owned by Facebook, you could install a desktop client or the sorely missed Google Reader to stay in touch with the sites and blogs that you felt were important. You had total control over what you wanted to read or subscribe to. If you ran a website, you put up an orange RSS icon, or let Firefox auto detect the feed and let the user decide what they wanted. RSS was (is) an open standard for publishing updates to a web site.
I would've said that Twitter & Facebook have killed it completely, but let's face it, RSS never really went mainstream. Google did not do enough to popularize Reader - just a core bunch of users wailed when they decided to shut down the service. Even Facebook had an RSS feed of the wall back in 2008 before they changed it to the 'news' feed format. Probably not the first time an open technology standard was thwarted by a large company, and won't be the last.