Is this story already on Digg?

And I don’t mean, “Oops, what you’re looking for isn’t here!”

If you are an avid Digg user you’ve seen the recent survey which included some new ideas for features such as ‘Anonymous Digging’ (WTF Could go wrong with that?), Save to read later (sounds somewhat useful and non-sinster), Digg Groups (Let’s turn Digg into Reddit and give a few users more power than they really need), Digg Breaking News (a clever feature for Digg trolls, to trick them into using the upcoming system already in place), and Digg Verticals (Trendy Web 2.0 speak for god knows what).  Here is what I would like to see Digg Improve:

  1. Improve the Duplication Engine (Is this story already on Digg?)
  2. Improve fairness
  3. Digg needs to be far less draconian
  4. Improve the Digg User Profiles
  5. Improve the Digg User Experience
  6. Make Digg more web 2.0 (Steal a page from Friend Feed)
  7. Replace the Diggbar
  8. Factor in Tweetmeme
  9. Digg Twitter Bots
  10. Intangibles

Why improve the Duplication engine?   Well it doesn’t work all that well. (Letterman – Kevin Spacey Tweets with Dave and Letterman – Kevin Spacey Tweets with Dave)  And sometimes it doesn’t work as intended at all. Ballmer Peak [XKCD] Should have taken me to Remember Windows ME? Here’s the explanation a friend linked me to an old XKCD post and I thought it wasn’t subbed but was wrong (both link to http://xkcd.com/323/).    I’ve seen some down right dirty things done to the Dupe detector (well heard about them at least) and of course I’ve been screwed by dupes. (Org: Reporter Gets Hit by a Mean Hoe and the Dupe: Grandma Attacks Reporter With A Hoe! )  Coming clean, I’ve unintentionally duped a few times, I’ve seen Digg Dupes POP when my original post didn’t Front Page, even one time I’ve posted the same thing one minute apart from another user and ironically while writing this post, one of my twitter pals duped a story that I had duped because it had been submitted by people that couldn’t get it Dugg.

Is this story already on Digg - The Geeks of Doom

Is this story already on Digg?

Improve fairness!  Digg needs transparency.   First off we can see who’s digging, let us see who’s burying, this is something Mixx has and it would be a huge game changer on Digg.   Also let us know if a Digg moderator buried it or the Digg users buried the story.

Col Tribune Story - Buried by Digg.com

Col Tribune Story - Buried by Digg.com

Digg has to be far less draconian.  now this has nothing to do with design or programming.  Two cases in point:  Don’t shoot the messenger.  Bring back Zaibatsu. Wipe the slate clean.  Un-ban everyone.  No really I mean it.  Instead of banning your loyal users, take a page out of twitter’s page book.  Suspend users for bad behavior or posting stuff that doesn’t fly with the TOS.  Ban users after a third strike offense or five strikes overall.  Or have the suspension time increase progressively as a user behaves poorly.  Maybe make it funny like Orkut Jail used to be.  In a lot of these incidents Digg should punish site owners instead of Digg users.  Send out a few warnings when a user is getting out of line.  Remember you will get farther with positive reinforcement, then you will by being draconian.  Make Digg more transparent and more democratic.

You're doing Great - Digg on!

You're doing Great - Digg on!

Improve the User Profiles?  Whats wrong with them and the Digg User Experience?  Well when Digg took away the shouting system it left a gapping hole on all our profiles for months now where the shout box used to be.  I suggest returning with but without allowing shouting of Digg posts.  It would be nice to say Hi to someone that adds you, maybe say thanks for Digging me, etc.  And since you guys have forced us to use Twitter, why not steal a page out of Virb’s Playbook and let the users show their status updates on their Digg profiles?  Remember when you had rel=”me” instead of rel=”nofollow me” (which is like saying I don’t trust myself in Micoformats/HTML, remember be far less draconian) and why not use site favicons instead of hyperlinks?  Maybe take a look at Dailymile.  Put some more social into your social bookmarking site.  Maybe allow for a Flickr importer on the side, Custom top friends, Smaller Friend avatars like Twitter and more of them.  Allow for the customization of  favorites, maybe three to six, instead  of having just three.  Allow the Digg user’s to tag posts, something most other social book marking sites already have; Mixx, Delicious, Magnolia, etc.  And if you allow tags why not add a tag cloud on the Digg user’s profiles.

 Missing Shoutbox Area on Digg profile for The Dude Dean

Missing Shoutbox Area on Digg profile for The Dude Dean

Make Digg more web 2.0 (Steal a page from FriendFeed)  Ajaxify all pages on Digg.  I think it would be great to NOT have to hit F5 to see the Digg trolls in action when a story hits front page on Digg.  I also think it would be great to be able to see the stories move around in upcoming like the way we can when you track a story on the bigg board.

Replace the Diggbar.  Stumble Upon has su.pr urls, I am sure you guys can come up with a system that’s fair for everybody.  I-framing content sites so Digg can up their traffic numbers is a bit lame.  A lot of Digg users aren’t using the Diggbar in their tweets, I for the most part am one of them and will only use the diggbar if there is no way to digg on the site I am linking to.  Make this a win-win for everyone.

Factor in Tweetmeme into the Digg Algorithm.  This would also be a huge game changer on Digg.  If you make us tweet about Digg shouldn’t that factor into the algo?  If you factored in Tweetmeme and it got out that you did this, it might even bring in some new users from twitter that aren’t avid digg users.  Don’t like Tweetmeme?  Use Topsy instead.  Either way, if you are making us Tweet about Digg by removing the shout system, it should factor into the algo.

I like the Digg Twitter bots you guys have and follow a few of them.  But if I can get my web site to say from The Dude Dean instead of from API, you guys can too.  Its not that hard.  I would love to see the bots follow some of the users back.   When the Digg bots post, have them give us credit (Via Username) so maybe we can get some followers since you forced us all to use twitter.  Again put more social into it.  When twitter users Retweet something its good form to give Credit where Credit is due.  Digg should do the same.  Remember be less draconian.  😉

Example Tweet:

“30 GOP Senators Vote to Defend Gang Rape” – http://digg.com/d216sfh?t1

“30 GOP Senators Vote to Defend Gang Rape” – http://digg.com/d216sfh?t1 (Via @TheDudeDean)

Lastly Intangibles.  I’ve mentioned the world famous Digg trolls a few times in this post.  This is the most important thing Digg needs to improve upon.  Go take a look at some of these guys.  Their stats suck.  The typical Digg troll doesn’t Digg, has a ton of comments and zero or very little Digg submissions.  Clearly these guys are burying more than Digging.  I suggest that maybe making Digg users earn buries something like 20 Diggs to 1 Bury or 50 Diggs to 1 Bury.  And maybe you can put some humor into the site like Digg does during april fools day and come up with some clever pop up warnings for the Digg Trolls.

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  1. #1 by D14BL0 on October 19, 2009 - 12:09 am

    I think Digg should just unban Zaibatsu and let all the goodness just naturally flow right back to them.

    But in all seriousness, some of those features would kill Digg. Anonymous Digg should be so obvious that the Digg staff wouldn’t even consider something like that.

  2. #2 by The Dude Dean on October 19, 2009 - 12:20 pm

    Someone at Digg Clearly Buried that one to me. How does a Mashable story that’s number one across the board get buried with two hours left?

  3. #3 by Leland Garvin on October 19, 2009 - 9:12 am

    Those are some great ideas.. also your new blog looks great, helps remind me to get working on mine

  4. #4 by Daniel on October 19, 2009 - 11:30 am

    Enjoying the new design as well, Dean. I’m surprised Tweetmeme hasn’t taken off more than it has. Also, have you seen The Twitter Times?

  5. #5 by Daniel on October 19, 2009 - 11:53 am

    By the way, appreciate you used this Colonel Tribune story as your example.

  6. #6 by Lyndon Antcliff on October 28, 2009 - 3:12 am

    Of course you have to remember that digg is big business with investors breathing down it’s hairy geek neck. End of the day, the users count for nothing. It’s the balance sheet that takes priority.

    There has been a change at digg that most may not have noticed, they have got their seo together. I know the guy who did it and he’s the dogs nads.

    Because of this digg will earn more.

    We, the users only get taken notice off when something goes wrong.

    But then, my interest in digg may be different to other users.

  7. #7 by Angshu on November 4, 2009 - 8:25 am

    Today visted ur blog for the 1st time
    Nice, clean design and very good articles on social sites
    I specially appreciate the article “Is this story already on Digg?”
    Keep up the good work!
    Take care and keep in touch,
    angshu (TNMG)

  1. Tweets that mention Is this story already on Digg? | Elite Space Monkey | Social Media Maverick | Web Developer | SEO Consultant | The Greatest Living American Dude | Fort Lauderdale, FL | TheDudeDean.com -- Topsy.com

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