What is Digg?

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Location: Cheverly, Maryland, United States

I'm a geek and musician in the Washington DC-area.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

digg.com is an exciting new community-edited tech news web site. this web site has no news editors. the only people who decide whether a submitted news story should be on the front page of the site are registered users of the site.

if you submit a news item to digg, people can vote their approval by "digging" it. you dig something by clicking on the number icon in the yellow square to the left of the news story.

i'm a big fan of digg. digg currently gets 15 million page visits per month -- and it's rapidly growing.

the one small downside of digg is that anyone can comment on stories that are submitted. so many teenagers end up leaving snide comments. that doesn't bother me too much -- but it does detract a bit from the site.

you can see news items i've submitted to digg at
http://digg.com/users/pshapiro/submitted

you can see items i've dug at http://digg.com/users/pshapiro

now here's the really cool part. you can use an rss reader (such as bloglines.com) to keep track of new items i'm digging. and you can even subscribe to an rss feed of all the news items that my friends on digg.com are digging.

what's interesting about digg.com is that you can end up learning more about the contours of a person's interests. if you look at the items i'm digging, you'll see i'm a big fan of open source. my interest in technology access matters is also plainly evident.

if i were a college or employer, i would want to peruse the digg page of any applicant. by browsing thru what they are digging -- and the comments they are leaving on other people's diggs, you come to know them a lot better.

to reach the front page of digg.com, a news story does not need to have a huge number of diggs. you can reach the front page of digg.com with as few as 50 diggs. the diggs do need to occur fairly soon (i.e. within 12 hours) of the news story being submitted. so it's the rate at which a news story is being dugg, rather than the total number of diggs, that propels it to the front page.


wired magazine recently published an article that predicts that digg.com is going to bury slashdot.org as the most popular tech news web site. i'm pretty sure that's an accurate prediction.

slashdot gets about 500 to 600 stories submitted per day, and accepts about 15 to 20. digg.com gets about 1,500 stories submitted per day, and accepts them all. it's more inclusive. more participatory. and therefore, more successful.

one extra neat featue of digg.com is the weekly diggnation video podcast. check it out. in this video podcast, the creators of digg talk about some of the most popular submitted stories from the past week.