TAG: Digg

Podcast on Social Design with Brian Oberkirch

I recently got the chance to virtually sit down and have a chat with Brian Oberkirch about social web design, including lessons we can draw from Digg, Delicious, MySpace and some of the other leading social apps. Brian asks some really good questions! Edgework – Joshua Porter 59MB MP3

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Digg’s Disincentive Highlights Social Design Issues Clearly

The changes that Digg made to its promotion algorithm are coming back to haunt them. Diggers are pushing back, and in doing so are highlighting the difficult challenges of social design. I chronicled Digg’s Design Dilemma back in September. At that point, after yet another claim of gaming had been made against them, Digg decided […]

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A Fundamental Truth of the Web

Tim Berners-Lee: “People have, since it started, complained about the fact that there is junk on the web. And as a universal medium, of course, it is important that the web itself doesn’t try to decide what is publishable. The way quality works on the web is through links. It works because reputable writers make […]

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Paying People for Voted-on Content: What’s the Right Model?

Derek Powazek, in Will Post for Money, describes how he thinks the Netscape.com model for paying content submitters is wrong-headed: (Netscape.com is very similar to Digg.com, where people submit stories to be voted on. The big difference between Netscape and Digg is that Netscape is paying people to submit stories…Digg isn’t).

“The secret to success with consumer-generated media is that the community has to feel wanted, important, engaged, and a little in love. For it to work, participants have to feel ownership. And you generally don’t feel ownership of something that pays you. When you get paid, you’re the one getting owned.

I think it’s different for JPG and Threadless because we’re not paying you for participation, we’re paying you for letting us make real products from your work. The difference is subtle, but important, because the participation is still rewarded by all those great humanistic rewards that are more important than money.

The bottom line is, when you found a relationship on getting paid, it never goes farther than that. And the moment the money runs out, it’s over. You knew what this was.”

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Democradig is Digg without Gaming

One of the big questions looming around the recent Digg design controversy is how can Digg be designed to be less of a haven for gaming? Well, the comments both on Bokardo and Digg were insightful, providing a huge number of thoughtful ideas. But faithful reader murtlest pointed to someone who has taken the issue a step further, actually building a site without ranking, without seeing who dugg what, and without showing the number of diggs.

It’s called Democradig.

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Digg’s Design Dilemma

This past week’s Digg controversy is one in a growing number of incidents that suggest that a small group of users are having an undue influence on the promotion of stories. In response, Digg is changing the way that it handles votes by adding complexity to its ranking algorithm. I think that’s the wrong approach, so here’s another idea: change the actual design of the site…that’s the real problem.

The most recent controversy happened on September 5th, when someone named jesusphreak posted Digg the Rigged?, an in-depth article exposing some of the curious details of recently-popular stories on digg. Many of the stories, jp pointed out, were dugg by members of the Digg Top 30, or the 30 most popular digg members (popular being measured by number of stories submitted that were promoted to the frontpage). The Top 30 includes Digg founder Kevin Rose.

This was not the first time that someone has pointed out this phenomenon. On April 18 of this year Macgyver at ForeverGeek posted Digg Army, which included screenshots of who dugg two recent articles on the site. Each article had the exact same 16 people digging it in the exact same order. Of the first 19, 18 were the same. Included in that list of people was, again, Kevin Rose. ( for an in-depth history see Tony Hung’s excellent: A Brief History of the Digg Controversy)

These incidents, taken together, are more than coincidence…

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