NEW YORK--Predatory women of the Samantha Jones variety would've done well to hightail it to Brooklyn on Wednesday night. Social news site Digg took over the massive Studio B nightclub for an Internet Week New York party and live taping of the Diggnation video podcast, and the place was filled almost exclusively with men under the age of 30. There were more getting turned away at the door. Ladies, I'm sure they could've used some hugs.
Most notably, Pownce and Digg have been integrated as people services. If you're not familiar with the self-styled "social browser," this means that you can perform all Digg- and Pownce-related chores--sorry, that should be "tasks"--from within the browser's social-networking features. Support for AOL Webmail has also been added, letting you check that account as easily as your Gmail account.
Plenty of would-be buyers have been named for social news site Digg, but one we haven't heard much about: Current Media, the cable and Web news channel that was launched by former vice president Al Gore.
It's one of the juicy tidbits detailed in BusinessWeek columnist Sarah Lacy's book, Once You're Lucky, Twice You're Good: The Rebirth of Silicon Valley and the Rise of Web 2.0, which hits bookstores on Thursday. In an excerpt posted to TechCrunch, Lacy writes about how executives Jay Adelson and Kevin Rose turned down a $100 million offer from … Read more
Monday night's Digg Town Hall, the second in the social news site's live Webcast series hosted by CEO Jay Adelson and founder Kevin Rose, didn't answer any of the really big questions. No acquisitions, no Series C funding, no dirt about Rose's dating life.
But something it did reveal: There's a storm afoot at Digg, and it could very well shape the site's future.
When Kevin Rose founded Digg, the site caught on as a hub for quirky geek news, and it's retained a reputation as being full of extremely opinionated tech enthusiasts. … Read more
Social news site Digg hosted its second quarterly "town hall" event on Monday night, in which executives Jay Adelson and Kevin Rose answered questions from the site's notoriously loyal, notoriously vocal user base.
Here's what went on:
5:48 p.m.: Next Town Hall is August 14. Next Digg Meetup's in New York on June 4. "Thanks to all the Digg users for all of your support. Thanks for being patient with us with these changes. We love your feedback," Adelson says.
5:45 p.m.: Live question No. 6: What were Adelson … Read more
There have been many Digg clones over the years. Some, including Mixx, have gained traction and even taken some disgruntled users away from Digg. In light of Digg's second town hall meeting taking place in a little over an hour, we got a pitch from Sift'd, a Digg clone whose owners claim to have addressed many of the issues brought up in the last town hall meeting.
While I think the site is bound to get a cease and desist from Digg for copying the popular social site's look and feel, it packs a serious punch when it comes to functionality.
One of the biggest differences is in the algorithm, which takes a story from each section and promotes it to the front page based on its popularity from the upcoming section. From that, the most popular of those stories makes it to the featured section--aka the front page of Sift'd. The algorithm also keeps too many stories from a single section from making it to the front page consecutively, choosing instead to promote something from another section, even if it's not as "hot." In practice this would keep several photo, video, and political stories from cluttering up the front page right next to one another. Unfortunately, at the moment it can't be tested since the site is devoid of users and submitted stories.
Another difference is the submission process. While similar to Digg, Sift'd's system allows for a much larger range of content to be added, including multiple images and videos (only from YouTube right now). Digg's system allows for a single thumbnail, taken at the time it scrapes whatever URL you provide. Sift'd does the same thing, as well as letting you upload your own image if it's not able to grab something when it goes through that page. I doubt anyone's going to want to attach six YouTube videos to a story submission, but Sift'd developers have approached it with an "if you build it, they'll come" mindset I find refreshing.
Also tweaked from Digg are some of the community interactions. You can still see what your Sift'd friends are up to, but there's none of the mini-social network that's been built into Digg with its shouts and profile pages. The commenting system lets you view comments on up to five levels of threading (meaning you can view a comment, plus four people who have responded in line to one another), as well as rate individual comments using a system similar to Yelp's, with varying attributes like funny, insightful, or "trolling." Users can also insert videos, images, and some basic HTML code to spice up what they write.
So is Sift'd "better" than Digg? No, but it's certainly an impressive effort. It's simple to submit stories and just as easy to vote for them. I also prefer the Sift'd comment system to Digg's current iteration, but even that is due to change any time now. It's also worth noting that it's already got an API with plans to extend it to user data--the kind of thing that can be used to create some of the neat visualizations seen on Digg. The one thing missing right now is users to make it all worthwhile.
I'm interested in seeing what comes of Digg's second town hall meeting Monday night (stay tuned for coverage), as well as some of the changes the company makes in its next major release. If anything, Sift'd proves how quickly some of these changes can be made on a smaller site that doesn't need to deal with some of Digg's growing pains of having to make sure everything will work for its 26 million users.
Social news site Digg is launching a new version of its comment system soon. The current iteration, which has received both ire and admiration from users, is changing for the better with several tweaks that will be the most noticeable for power users who troll the site for hours each day.
Of the advancements, the most noticeable is in load times, which have been tweaked by having comments load as users scroll down the page instead of all at once. Users can also now change their votes on other user's comments, and even delete something they've said at … Read more
Gaming is one of the greatest uses of Flash technology. There are tons of places to get your Flash gaming on, and one of my new favorites is Nonoba. I found my way there earlier this morning from a link on Download Squad for a particularly fun game called Comboll that's a cross between Breakout and a scrolling level of Super Mario Bros.
The site offers the same communal experience of playing games with others as Kongregate does, with built-in user chat, reviews and commenting, along with achievements and a built-in social network. There's also a revenue-sharing program … Read more
This post was updated at 11:18 AM PT to correct the date of the announcement.
Most notably, the company has released a "Top Buzz" widget that site and blog owners can embed in their Web sites, displaying the top articles in Yahoo Buzz or those from a specific Buzz category. There are also now RSS feeds for stories submitted to Buzz as well as each of its categories, and "First Buzzed By" indicators much … Read more
This is a big win for Digg. Over the last six months, I have seen a significant increase in the usage of Digg by college students, and this inclusion in the Facebook Mini-Feed will only improve its reach in that demographic.
A concern that I have with the integration is that your Mini-Feed will probably become … Read more