I remember a time when Digg used to roam wild in the Social News kingdom. It was the force to be reckoned with when it came to internet marketing – everybody needed to hit the front page to gain some traffic to their site. I’m sure tons of blogs have built their popularity off of Digg’s massive traffic influx, but there are many signs pointing towards this site closing the lid.
Digg used to be a very popular website – I would frequent the site constantly to check out the greatest news, what was popular today, everything. Granted this was back in 2006 when the site was still relatively new, and I’ve been a Digger all way the way through 2008. However recently it seems as though Digg.com is taking a turn for the worst, and may need a lot of help recovering.
Power Users have Taken Control
More and more people are starting to realize how heavily the system is gamed by certain power users – the most common of which is MrBabyMan. Getting an article to the front page of Digg used to mean it was full of good content and interesting to read.
At this point almost anybody can hit the front page if they really want to. There are even some SEO companies which you can pay a fee to have unique diggs on your stories – basically paying to hit the front page of a user-run social news site. Clearly there is something wrong here.
Limitations on Categories and Smaller Niches
I have nothing against Digg per-se and I don’t want to get a bad rap as some Digg-hater, but I can see where the site is going and it’s not anywhere good. Especially with how popular Digg is, they limit all of the stories submitted to just around 50 different categorizes. This method could work well when Digg was smaller, but they needed to scale up months ago and just haven’t followed suit.
One of my favorite sites to visit is Reddit. Apparently the “rival” of Digg, Reddit shows as an actual source of what is cool on the web. There are smaller Sub-Reddits which are devoted to specific topics, such as Design and Philosophy.
Digg needed to upgrade to this system a while ago when they started getting such a huge influx in users, but now they have so many posts submitted to such a limited range of topics, it’s no wonder the chances of hitting the front page are less than 5%.
Moving Onto the Next Step
Many are asking “Once Digg crashes, where will social news be held?”. A good answer would be on micro-niche sites – especially Pligg based websites. We have already seen this on Design News, and it has worked out quite well.
I even started a Pligg site for bloggers and internet marketers, Blogger Den. So far I’ve seen some decent success, and showcasing all of these great articles is both a hobby and a “job”.
So what is the Future of Digg?
I don’t have any choice closing words here but I will say that Digg is in rough shape. They may come up with some revolutionary idea to save the app – more user interactivity, better categories, anything to break up the power-users clustered together to rule the front page.
Any thoughts on the article? Let me know what you think about the future of Digg and where we can see things heading from here.