Back to digging…

Well as you can see from my previous post, I’m back to digging. I’ve decided that it doesn’t matter if a few other people think I’m gaming digg simply because I’m in the top 30. I’m comfortable in the knowledge that I’m not, so they can kiss my arse. Having said that, I have a few ideas to make digg a better place if anyone is listening.

As I’ve stated before, I think that where digg really shines is in the “upcoming stories” section. Prior to digg v. 3, you used to be able to tell digg that you wanted to see so many number of upcoming stories at once. Now you can only see 15 unless you meander over to the cloud view. I’d like to be able to have some control over what and how I arrange the upcoming stories. For instance, I’d like to be able to see 150 upcoming stories, but arrange them with titles only. Or see 150 upcoming stories and arrange them by most dugg (prior to going to the front page). Or see 1000 stories, by title only, without seeing how many diggs each story has, and descending by submission time/date. Make sense? As it is now, the upcoming stories view is useless to me because I don’t see more than 15 stories at a time. The cloud view is okay, but after awhile, all the titles seem to melt into each other and it becomes difficult to follow. As it stands, you can only arrange upcoming stories by, “show newest”, “show oldest”, “show most popular”, “show least popular”, “show most commented”.

In an effort to create longer lasting front page articles, I’d also like to see the same functionality on the front page too. Perhaps these kinds of things are in the works or perhaps not, but if you’re listening digg, help us out!

Peace out…

 

Digg

After these past few days, I’m going to take a much needed break from digg.

I invested a lot of my time and energy into digg. It’s correct that nobody asked me to, but people dugg my stuff enough that it encouraged me to continue submitting, which eventually got me into the top 30 users there. Was that the reason I did it? I can say that it wasn’t but that falls on deaf ears.

For whatever reason, after spending so much of my time submitting and digging other stories, I got to the point where I took ownership of a small piece of how digg turned out but what I failed to acknowledge, was how little control I actually had in how digg turned out or how little the users of digg actually cared. As was told to me in follow ups from yesterday, I’m guilty of “rigging digg” by association. Simply because I accept ANYBODY as my friend on digg and yes I have a few of the top posters on digg as my mutual friends. Because of that association…..I’m guilty of whatever is going on…..some kind of smoke and mirrors to pad my ranking to be a top digger. Some kind of back room IRC acknowledgement that if you pat my back, I’ll pat yours. But what anyone who has accused me of wrongdoing has failed to do, was simply look at my digging history. I have less than 3000 stories that I’ve dugg and that is since April, 2005.

But all of that doesn’t matter because the “digg army” doesn’t care about what I have to say. They’ve made up their minds that I have to be up to something nefarious simply because I’m in the top 30 and because I have some top diggers on my mutual friends list. Whatever.

As for the digg administration. I think they work their asses off to make digg what it is. But digg isn’t just about the administration. It’s also about it’s users. As with anything, there will always be users who invest more time and energy than others. That doesn’t make them right, wrong or better. It just makes them more invested. As with any “democratic” setup, there will be inequities. However, I think it’s a dangerous path to head down when you take away the ability of long time users to want to become invested in your site and how it turns out. This is where I think I am right now. Digg will become even more rife with backstabbing, rude and malicious people only because they’ll have no interest in how digg turns out. They won’t care…

All this being said, the majority of diggers have already made it very clear that they couldn’t care less if I came or went. To a certain extent, so has the digg administration. Some were much more vocal about it, but the bottom line is if the users and the administrators of digg don’t care….why should I?

 

I’ve had it..

So it seems that if you’re in the top 30 users on digg, you open yourself up to a world of criticism and ridicule. I’m thoroughly disheartened and a bit pissed off at what is going on over there and here but that’s perhaps only because I feel as if I’ve invested a lot of time and energy into digg.

I haven’t done it for the glory. I haven’t done it for the fame. I haven’t done it for anything other than I simply liked feeling part of something like digg. But now, things have changed (again) for me. I’m being accused of being part of a digg “circle jerk”:

And second, I’m thinking the reason they haven’t ever published the algorithm is to keep people like gregd and those in his circle-jerk club from being able to work the system. If they *are* this concerned with keeping people from taking advantage of the system, why aren’t they doing anything to stop it?

What I’m apparently supposed to stop from happening is other users automatically digging stories that people on their friends list submit. Wait a minute! I’m supposed to tell other users how to use digg according to me? What kind of bullshit is that? As long as you aren’t violating their TOS, digg is what you make it. The person that accused me of being in this “circle jerk” dclowd9901, hasn’t even taken the time to check what I’ve dugg and what I haven’t dugg before throwing around his accusations. I believe it’s simply that I’m in the top 30, so I must be part of this big conspiracy:

nobody asks you to wake up early and start burning through articles to submit to the homepage. That is your choice, and if that brings you to the top and makes you an easier target for this issue, then that’s something you’ve been risking all along. Frankly, I’d be pretty happy if the lot of you took a damn day off, just to see how it goes.

So now his logic follows that if I use digg for, what I think to be, it’s intended purpose, I’ve somehow got it coming? Fuck that. This shit pisses me off to no end and it’s exactly why I quit doing diggfan.com. I didn’t say anyone asked me to logon to digg at 5AM. I get up early specifically to logon to digg and post what I think are some cool stories. So he’d be pretty happy if I stopped contributing to digg just to see how it goes? Whatever….

These very same people who are complaining about the “digg elite” and their apparent digging of each others stories are calling for banding together to immediately bury any of the “digg elite” submissions. Well pardon the fuck out of me, but aren’t you then doing exactly what it is you’re complaining about? Are these the same people that cried “traitors” when BloodJunkie and Wayjer left for Netscape? At least now they’re getting paid for the abuse…

I get told all the time that people bury my comments and my submissions, simply because it comes from me. Huh? I guess that’s your prerogative but it seems a bit silly to bury a submission not based on it’s quality, but rather it’s submitter.

All in all, I’m just extremely frustrated at being lumped into some lame category simply because I’m a top 30 user. If that comes with the territory, then I either have to grow thicker skin or get the fuck out of digg altogether. I don’t make digg what it is anymore or less than what the other top 30 folks do. There are over 500,000 registered users on digg and each and everyone has the ability to make digg what they want it to be, whether it’s to band together and eliminate the “digg elite” or start submitting your own quality posts to FP (front page).

Edited to add:

My friend P9 (p9s50W5k4GUD2c6) (who happens to be the number one user on digg at the moment) has this to say:

Dear Mr. Rose: So all of a sudden, my use of the BUILT-IN functionality of Digg amounts to gaming?

I ignored Digg’s ice-cold level of support during the Netscape transition. Instead I stayed with Digg – for nothing.
I ignored Jay’s jack-ass condescending T-Shirt comment.
I ignored the misbegotten algorithm you all put in place shortly after that that made it MISERABLY hard for any user to get to the front page (which is a big factor in this whole issue)
I overlooked all the red ink about I/we were FOOLS to digg so hard for you – the 60 Million Dollar Man.
I overlooked the Trademark fiasco and the treatment of Digg’s users
I overlooked this: http://digg.com/music/EMI_in_free_music_downloads_deal and
But I will NOT overlook your tacit equation of BUSTING MY ASS for Digg with gaming.

As a direct result of your blog this evening. I will no longer no supporting Digg going forward. I bequeath my measly number one position to whoever wants to reign.

And for all of you that do nothing but bitch about your being PREVENTED from getting your stories dugg – here’s your chance! Now YOU can spend all the time, all the effort and get stabbed in the back by fellow Diggers (aptly named) and then tossed to the side by a Digg team that values toilet paper with more worth than the core users that feed this site it’s content every day.

I believe you to be a good man, Kevin. Well intentioned or not: your blog satisfied malcontents equipped with baseless allegations while you effectively urinated on your top diggers (correction: top gamers). I wish you well. I will be turning over the Digg Users Support Group to someone else.

To my many friends – I will miss you.
P9

Sadly, I’m at that point too…..

Updated again to add:

This is apparently catching on in the blogosphere with some of the major folks carrying it.  Techcrunch has a nice write up about it,

 

 

Internet At The Speed Of Digg…

One thing that I’ve always found interesting with the internet is the speed at which information becomes available. I’ve seen a slow and progressive change to mainstream news outfits like CNN and MSNBC over the past decade (or more) to provide breaking news and to have constantly scrolling ‘tickers’ at the bottom of the screen to keep us up-to-date. I attribute this to the internet and the information age. All this being said, Digg is changing the availability and durability of information even more.

I’ve noticed an increasing trend on Digg and I’m not sure how they can change it, or even if they can change it. That’s the constant moving on to the next story. The Digg homepage will hold 15 top stories. These 15 top stories constantly shift out as new stories get top diggs ad infinitum.. I don’t have exact statistics and I’ve got better things to do than to sit and time the stories, but I’m willing to bet that a story that makes it to the homepage, only stays on the homepage for about 3-4 hours. If that. The trend of moving on also extends to the comments of each story. I would love to see some comment threads go on for days. But that never happens because people have moved on.

An example is this story on Digg that was submitted (at the time that I wrote this) 1 day 22 hours ago. It made it to the front page sometime yesterday and has 300 comments. I asked some legitimate questions regarding macs in the enterprise and got one person to actually answer some of my questions in the comments on Digg. However, another Digger by the name of David actually took the time to answer the rest of my question here on my blog! Don’t get me wrong, I really appreciate the fact that David went out of his way to do this, but it’s interesting that he did it here and not in the comments on Digg.  Is this because David felt as if everyone had moved on?

I’d love to see Digg come up with a solution to make the stories have more staying power.  I know that they have it in them to come up with something progressive with regard to the comments and the ability to talk about submitted articles.

 

More Small Changes Come To Digg

After a brief downtime at approximately 06:30 Pacific Time, digg is back up. Some small changes that I’ve noticed are the Friends button in your profile. Any other changes that you’ve noticed?

Edited to add: Digg’s very own blog states that they were pushing some bug fixes too….

 

Small Changes Come To Digg

After a brief downtime at approximately 6:30 pacific time, Digg has come back up with some small changes.  Some of the things that I’ve noticed are that the “undigg” text is now red and the categories for story submittal have been rearranged with the technology category being listed first.  Post any changes that you’ve noticed.

Peace

 

Digg v. Netscape

The saga continues. Why is it always something versus digg? As I’m sure you’ve already heard, Netscape is attempting to woo away users from digg, reddit, etc., by paying them $1000 a month to post stories to Netscape instead of digg and reddit. The catch? You have to be one of the top users on either of those sites. The other catch? I believe that you have to forsake digg or reddit if you take Netscape up on it’s offer.

The offer is stirring up some controversy at digg with the majority of diggers thinking that you’d be a sellout if you took them up on the offer. Or that the money is somehow “dirty” money. WTF? Dirty money??? I’ve got news for you….all money is dirty. If I take Netscape up on it’s offer, I’d just have a $1000 more dirty dollars a month than you. But I digress. Real life dictates to us that we have to earn money to get along in this world. We have to eat, pay for shelter and clothe ourselves. Last time I checked, we couldn’t barter for most of this stuff and getting it for free is generally considered illegal. That leaves paying for it with cold hard cash.

Holding up the idea that digg is somehow a model of democracy and a protector of freedom is lunacy. Nobody seems to remember the millions of dollars in venture capital that digg received a year ago. How come there weren’t cries of “sell out!” then? Because it was an internet success story. Company starts out with an idea that catches on like wildfire and they in turn, make millions. But somehow, getting paid to do exactly what it is you do on digg, is selling out? Please. Digg’s CEO, Jay Adelson has stated that “monetary compensation is out of the question” and “against the principals of Digg“. I have to ask then, are the principals of digg such that the owners of the site get millions while diggers, who arguably make Digg what it is, get an overall user ranking? How come monetary compensation wasn’t out of the question when the venture capitalists came knocking?

The bottom line is that I believe that the good folks that run Digg deserve monetary compensation because the last time I tried, I couldn’t pay my mortgage with a t-shirt. As I believe that the top Diggers deserve monetary compensation for what they do. It won’t dilute the quality of the stories that they submit. It won’t make Digg any less popular. In fact, Netscapes plan to pay their “anchors”, might indeed make it a force to be reckoned with.

Peace..

 

The Digg democracy

Numerous websites are now popping up, critical of Digg’s ‘democratic process’ of digging stories, most notably Slashdot’s piece, this guy’s piece, and yet another. It seems to me that the guys that run Digg need to step up here and explain what’s going on. I’ve had some of my stories get dugg up to about 30 over the course of a 1/2 an hour only to be reported into oblivion over the course of several minutes by watching digg spy. It seemed odd that that many people would report my story that I wrote to the digg team about. They verified that all was hunky dory in Digg land.