Friday, February 02, 2007 Fights Spam, Scam, Games

In a long blog post, Digg's founder Kevin Rose explains why they have removed their list of top users, who were ranked based on how many stories they’ve been able to promote to Digg's home page. Most of the post talk about the steps Digg has taken to fight spam, scam and gaming of their system, it is reasonable to conclude that this is yet another step in that battle.

Top Digg users are often requested to help stories get the the home page, sometimes in return for cash payments. By removing the list, Digg makes it harder to figure out who those users are, yet many experts and Digg's users find this step lame...

Kevin is definitely sending mixed signals. when you have a system that works like digg, of course there will be people wanting to organize and promote stories that they like. you cant expect people to vote as an individual, they have friends, they have jobs, they are involved in communities. they should have focused into the tech news at first and stay there. now digg is becoming mainstream with inaccurate, sensationalist, boring news.

Unless you want to see articles about Digg or the newest Free collection of fonts, the stories are crap. Removing the top users list won’t matter, people can just look at the profile of submitters for articles on the home page. The only articles that make it to the home page are the ones submitted by the top users anyways.

We have written before about Digg and why nobody wants to buy them, and aside other reasons given there the spam, manipulations and the gaming on the site are seen as major issues. In other words the Digg's concept is organized in such way so that it will always carry out spam and manipulations.

A user datter recently commented on one of the leading tech blogs:

"Digg is a great idea which has grown faster than it’s creators ability to administer it.
In a perfect world, they’d be ahead of these sort of problems, rather than playing catch-up trying to fix scenario after it’s proven to be broken. I suppose broken is a bit harsh actually, but the site is definitely being gamed with Rose et al trying their hardest to implement some rules/policies that will keep it together without destroying the essence of what the site is all about.

Being forerunners in this sort of self-run community, they get to sort out all the pain for those similar sites that will follow later and improve on the idea. Slashdot lead the way for a long while in this regard, and came along and improved on the model without having to figure out a lot of the issues Slashdot had already been through. Now Digg is leading the way and having to wade through the mire themselves.

Sucks to be out front sometimes, but that’s the price of success."

We think that Digg is great success, and with the success all the issues come along, but it takes on old media outlets, which puts fire under their feet and unless they figure this out and find their niche, they are under the risk to have their concept and popular site ruined.

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