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The Digg Parasite

As Digg has grownin popularity so has general awareness of the “Digg effect”. For those of you who were like me and do not know anything about the Digg effect let me explain. Digg effect is “the term given to the phenomenon of a popular website linking to a smaller site, causing the smaller site to slow down or even temporarily close due to the increased traffic.”

The Digg effect occurs when a smaller site makes it to the front page of Digg. The resulting mass increase in traffic overloads the host server and takes all the bandwidth. Sites can be down from anywhere around a few hours up to a couple of days.

digg-effect-stat

Let’s evaluate, however, the pros and cons of being Dugg by Digg. Aside from the obvious risk of the “Digg Effect” in being worse off than before being Dugg, it is interesting to note that the common users of Digg generally do nto click on ads. The users of Digg are not concerned with so much as finding a sweet new site, but rather finding quick and valuable web tools and information. Second, Digg users generally do not return to the webpage, but rather simply move on to the next big Digg.

So, if Digg users are not faithful users for returning to your site and do not click ads what else can they offer… one positive aspect of being Dugg is that Digg users generally offer comments about the site. On One hand these comments can serve as valuable critical criticism for the Dugg website. On the other hand these comments can also be tedious to go through and are often shallow, reflecting a similar single minded perspective. 1811

What about the SEO benefits of Digg? Although being Dugg has shown some results in SEO page rank on google, it more often than not fails to work. In fact, the general trend is that the actual Digg of a website is considered more relevant by google than the actual site being Dugg. To try to use Digg as a SEO tool is difficult and unrewarding.

In conclusion, while Digg is a great site to use and have fun with, from my research, I feel that Digg is merely a parasite doing more harm than good. Sure a smaller site gains more exposure, but it is temporary and comes with the likely potential of huge costs through crashing your server with only a small and unlikely chance for benefit.

For a more positive perspective on Digg as it relates to other websites check out the blog post Digg Effect: Top Ten Things Webmasters Should Know.

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Digg for Sale?

I recently read an article about user-generated Digg.com being up for sale again (after nearly selling to Yahoo! back in 2006) and this time hiring influential investment bankers at Allen & Co. to search out prospective buyers. They would be aiming for nearly $300 million dollars, although speculation shows that they may now be contemplating selling for somewhere in the neighborhood of $225 million. Rumor has it that there are four “prospective” buyers in Murdoch’s News Corp (which owns MySpace), Google, Microsoft, and a fourth unknown.

Whether or not this decision to sell was affected by the potential sale of Yahoo! to Microsoft as a merger with MSN is unknown; If MSN were to merge with Yahoo!, Google may be more motivated to raise bids with regards to Digg and also to increase their involvement in the world of social media.

(Info on digg: Digg.com is an entirely web 2.0 user-driven site. One can submit videos, podcasts, articles etc. which others on the site can then browse. For more in depth information – the site describes itself well.)

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The Offices of Web 2.0

Here is a really cool photoblog of the workspaces of some of the big players in web 2.0 The blog also gives a brief view into what each one does. Linked in office

  • Facebook
  • Digg
  • Twitter
  • Craigslist
  • Mozilla
  • Joost
  • Flickr
  • Last.fm
  • jaiku
  • LinkedIn
  • Reddit
  • netvibes
LinkedIn workspace

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