What’s wrong with the new Digg?
Ok, now this isn’t the normal post I would usually put on the blog, as this is a little too geeky and technical but what the hell!!
The new Digg has been open to the public from today, Thursday 26 August, and before that for a fair amount of time to beta testers. Now I do love Digg and the idea of it. And the new version has some great features (not to mention getting rid of crap framed pages) BUT it does have quite a few flaws.
I am actually going to start with my summary, and go into detail further down.
In my opinion the new Digg will help to increase traffic on large sites (Telegraph, Mashable etc.) and now decrease traffic to smaller sites, such as here at AJB. Overall this will mean that the overall quality of content on Digg will decrease and ultimately so will it’s users, traffic, advertising and money, leaving Kevin Rose a Kevin Who? and here’s why;
Power users (those with thousands of followers) are even more powerful and are really the only people able to get sites on the front page. The larger sites (Mashable already do it) will automatically submit their stories on Digg, so no-one else ever can, thus increasing it’s followers and removing the kudos from the average user who done it first. In my opinion 25% of Mashable’s posts don’t deserve to be on Digg, so we will just end up with crap pushed onto our screens.
This will also mean if you have your own site and you want it to get to the front page, you will have to pay someone (a power user) to submit or dig it for you with no guarantees) so it is seen by all their followers.
In the past you could be a successful digger without actually befriending anyone. If you submitted a story and it had good content it would eventually be dugg by others and rise up the rankings through the upcoming section. This meant Digg was content orientated, which in my opinion is the way the web should be. Now, with the removal of upcoming stories this will no longer happen. It will be socially driven (I have more friends than you)
With the old Digg I always thought there were not enough sub-topics to put your submission into. Digg’s answer? Remove sub-topics all together!! Now some might think this is a good idea, and to you my friends, I say you are mad!!
The advantage with the sub-topics is the ability to refine your search even further. Let’s take sport for instance, dominated by US sports, such as baseball, basketball, eggball (you call it football, fools!). Now for me, I don’t really care to much for those sports. In the past I could easily click motorsports, soccer (football, fools!) etc. which made my experience, as a user, much easier to find the kind of content I want.
Kevin Rose has jumped on the Twitter Bandwagon. We must all have ‘Followers’ in some ego boosting stupid online virtual world. But how do you find some? There is a ‘dugg by’ but this only includes people who you are already following, which asks the question how do you actually find new people you aren’t following?! So far, it isn’t easy. The only way I can see is go into each individual page (by clicking on the comments button) and then click each commenter and whoever submitted the Digg. There is however no way to see who has dugg the post in full which means your options are limited.
This will actually help closed ‘groups’ of people on Digg manipulating stories, which after recent events, I am sure is something Digg want to avoid.
For me, this is just Digg rushing everything out without proper testing or planning. If you want people to build a follower / friend base that’s fine, but they need to be able to find people!
Although I love the majority of the new layout, and the speed there is one glaring omission. Who actually submitted the post!! To me, these are the people I want to connect with as they are actively trying to find great stories for us to read. But at the moment you have to click into each post to find their details. #Fail
Also the sponsored Diggs are now less visible, they integrate far to easily into the feed and look like a normal submission apart from some small writing inside a pale yellow block. I can only assume this is a ploy to help their revenue and advertising given recent backlash from their investors.
Well I haven’t got it to work yet! Whenever I type my user name, or anything else it comes up with the ‘wheels are off the wagon’… It did work once and I typed in the blog ‘averagejoesblog’ but there were no results or profiles available. Both lies…
If Digg are not careful, all their wheels might fall off the Digg bandwagon…
So there you have it. My take on the new Digg. I found myself venting on twitter so just thought it easier to write it all down. I would love to know your thoughts and ideas for improvement?
You can comment here, or get me on twitter @stuartflatt.
P.S I would love to get this high on Digg and prove all my theories wrong so give it a digg huh ;-)