You can digg it

by Eszter Hargittai on July 22, 2005 is an interesting site that “combines social bookmarking, blogging, RSS, and non-hierarchical editorial control”. Users post links to sites of interest. Others can then decide to digg them, which constitutes a vote for the recommendation. If enough users digg a link then it gets moved to the front page. Each link can have a few sentences of description and comments are enabled on all posts. Although similar services already exist (Kuro5hin and Slashdot come to mind for different reasons), digg seems to be simpler and quicker. That is, the time and effort involved in becoming a user, rating sites, submitting a link and getting it to many people seems to be lower. There is a list of top users, which may motivate people to post more.

I think digg could also function as an alternative to blogs for those who mainly use their blogs to post links without much commentary. It is possible to bring up a page with links by user, either featuring all of the links they digg or just the ones they submitted. Since comments are enabled, a discussion can follow, which is a nice feature not available on such sites as

Unfortunately, the site only features tech topics. Granted, it is broadly defined to include categories such as music and movies, but it doesn’t take long to realize that the coverage of topics is restrictive (I guess depending on one’s interests). I wonder whether they will be expanding or whether other topics could be included on another similar service. The system would work well with all sorts of other material from politics to science, from health to travel, from recipes to humor. Another shortcoming (although I see reasons for this) is that a link can only be tagged by one category. That is also somewhat restrictive.

The site does have some glitches. When submitting a new link, the site performs a search to see whether the link is a duplicate. Unfortunately, the search does not check for duplicate URLs, just duplicated topics that don’t always catch previous mentions of the same link.

Overall, the site has a helpful layout and is user friendly. I have been digging around it for a few days now and have found some interesting material. I recommend checking it out.


by Eszter Hargittai on July 22, 2005


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