Things to Do When Google Buys Digg

Or… Things to do when Microsoft Buys Digg, either way it is a good thing, IMHO

MrBabyMan hates the idea, the Digg top 100 surely hates the idea and the Digg Mafia REALLY hates the idea. Let me go on record right now saying that I LOVE the idea, especially if Microsoft aquires Digg and uses Digg to finally become a viable search engine. Microsoft you say? One reason and one reason only. Competition is good for the health of the Internet.

If Google buys Digg they will have a full circle strangle hold on Internet search. Google owns search, 70% as of the last estimate. They own web analytics. They own RSS feed readership, 40% worth. They own RSS analytics, Feedburner. They are the only search engine that uses unique indicators to rank blogs and Blogsearch.

Then they use these items to gather data on how to rank blogs. Digg would simply round out this full circle and give them full access to use social bookmarking to further rank blogs and news items by readers voting habits. I have seen evidence in my own testing and others that Google is weighting Digg votes more and more, if only a little bit.

Let’s start with WHY I love the idea of Digg being bought by either.

This is how I see the future of Digg no matter who buys, Google or Microsoft. Call it Diggsoft or Diggle, I don’t care. A Google buys scenario means I make allot of money, I know more about this than almost anyone. Microsoft buys, I still make money and we all profit by having an Internet monopoly broken.

#1 Digg votes become a positive indicator to the parent search engine and I can quit spending so much time trying to convince the huddled masses that things are about to change fast. I see a Digg button right next to our search engine listings. Enough said?

#2 Digg, Blogsearch and Google Websearch become one as the default search result. I would guess that Blogsearch and Digg will maintain separate identities but I am seeing blogs rank in Websearch for no other reason other than they got allot of Diggs.

#3 Digg comments become valuable too and could even be displayed along side a search result. Think of mousing over a link under a search result and seeing the comments on Digg be displayed in a DHTML overlay. I already theorize that the number of comments on your page or a Digg page that links to your blog post is a positive indicator to Google. Few agree, but I find it a positive indicator and if I was writing an algorithm to rank blogs or any dynamically created web site, I would certainly rank interaction high.

#4 Google will buy Digg so they can display AdSense along side the posts, that is how they will monitize digg. Currently social sites use display ads mostly. They do not convert and they do not load fast, and you can hardly sell adspace these days. AdSense does convert because it is highly targeted, plus Google has been testing Digg in their algo, they just need to kickout the Digg top 100 and the mafia, same thing.

#5 Chris Lang dances on the Digg Mafia’s grave and the crowd goes wild. I do not see the bullshit that is Digg continuing after a major purchase be Google or Microsoft. There are many little clicks within Digg that go around burying posts and accusing a sites of spamming Digg. This has got to go. Many say that Digg would have sold long ago if not for these childish antics by little punk kids.

It got me banned for life as KeyWebData.com when I was writing articles critical of Digg. I was saying NOT to submit your own articles and NOT to Digg your own items after they appear. How can I be spamming Digg when everything I teach both in public posts and my social marketing ebook is against using anything but naturally occurring submissions?

The bottom line

Digg is going to be bought. Social bookmarking is going to become part of everyday life and how we use the internet. Whoever buys Digg the other is going to go after the next best. Delicious is owned by Yahoo, another reason Microsoft values Yahoo. The search engine that emerges from this strangle hold that Google has on the Internet with social bookmarking as PART of the results will emerge as victorious (Diggle) or at least a hot contender (Diggsoft).

16 Comments

  1. Posted June 20, 2008 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    Well… Digg does not approve links to sites in Danish, så actually Digg is without value for us.

  2. Posted June 20, 2008 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    Since Google is universal in every country and every language a Google purchase would be great for you since I am sure that would change.

  3. Posted June 20, 2008 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

    You’ve got a point. If a purchase would lead to an international Digg of some sort – then I would really love it! We have some very small “Digg-like” sites in Denmark like http://www.anyhed.dk etc., but it would be great to take part in the larger scale Digg!

    By the way: I visited Phoenix last week. Man! Hot, hot, hot!!! :-)

  4. Posted June 20, 2008 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

    I stopped bookmarking with Digg a year ago because of the inane and childish behavior of the Digger Punks. I never submitted a blatant ad piece. All were relevant to sound and proven marketing strategies. No up sells or dowm sells or affiliate links. I don’t think I was ever banned but my posts were never dug or nasty comments left. I’ve tried to encourage others to stop using Digg. There is no active management of the site and the platform is archaic.
    IMHO nothing but improvement would come about from either a Google or Microsoft purchase of Digg.
    And, until that change happens I say “STOP USING DIGG”.

  5. Posted June 20, 2008 at 3:40 pm | Permalink

    Well done Chris!

    The earth seems to be getting flatter – and faster, too.

    Everytime something innovative pops up – catches fire online – gets legs – seems like it enters the realm of takeover bait by a large wealthy company.

    This is happening in all arenas.

    Try and find a domain name if you don’t think this is true. Any viable dotcom is now owned by the snakes of the Internet – Domain Squatters.

    As the guy who really created the Internet wrote in his seminal book about the creation of the World Wide Web in 1999 – the danger but obvious trend will be that the good domains and web properties will eventually be taken over by whomever has the most money.

    I wish it weren’t so – and won’t be completely – but who among us isn’t tempted at some point to just “sell it all.”

    Rick Butts

  6. Posted June 20, 2008 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

    LOL _ well I just tried to Digg ya, and now I know why there is no digg icon in the social bookmarks at the bottom of the post.

    You go boy!

    Rick

  7. Posted June 21, 2008 at 6:47 am | Permalink

    Does every site get the top dog group in it? It seems Digg has the top dog group from what I keep reading. The people who got there first and manage to be the super diggers.
    Digg has never seemed all that social to me. Searchles has a lot more in the social area. Most social sites allow you a place to write your own blog.
    It was just when I found Searhles through Blog Log that I discovered the importance of Digg. Up until that time I thought it was hit or miss and luck that you could actually have any sort of success using it.
    I see the makings of a science fiction novel here with the Net giants taking over the world. We lose countries completely and you either belong to the mighty nation of Google, MSN, or Yahoo (who might be taken over eventually by one of the larger ones…now that is even scarier).

    It would certainly make the Olympic Games shorter with people either competing for Google or MSN.

  8. Posted June 21, 2008 at 7:47 am | Permalink

    To Thomas Rosenstand: English is most still one of the most spoken languages in the world, it is often the official language of such fields as airline pilots to those involved in international business. It is even considered, by some, as the official language of the Internet. All of this does very little good when it comes to trying to reach the people of the world.

    When I was in Europe, some of those living in Germany and the Benelux countries spoke English almost as well as I did. Some had command of the English Language better than I did, in fact. Yet there were tens of thousands, if not millions, of people running around Europe who did not speak or read English at all or not very well. They may have had to learn English in school, but in their daily lives they really had no need to use it… and I can’t blame them, it’s their country and they ought to speak the language that is most common and comfortable to them.

    Digg is an American site intended for English speaking people only, it would not be the least bit surprising to find out that no provisions are made for the Spanish speakers of California and the American Southwest. It is hoped that if Google acquired Digg then they would recognize the need to include those people who speak a language other than English by setting up something for those people.

    To Hal: I am not a Digg advocate, by this I mean I don’t run around sucking up to Digg and it’s owners. Where Digg is involved I will state what is on my mind and if that offends Digg or their avid followers then so be it. I also am a firm believer in not throwing the baby out with the bath water.

    Every time I go to Digg, I can just picture Jerry Lee Lewis banging o the piano and singing “Bay-bee, There’s a whole lotta Enablin’ goin’ on”. LoL Many members of Digg empowers certain other members by their actions, these ’empowered” members often “empower” Digg, who in returns “empowers” the members who “empower” Digg even more. It’s a vicious cycle and you can probably find similar things on other groups where the owners, due to sheer laziness or idealism, give the members too much power to decide how the group is to grow and function. Digg has got to be the world’s biggest Kaffee Katsch rooted in the philosophies of the Brownshirt. LoL

    Digg is a fantastic tool to use, but it’s being wasted on fluff. Additionally there are many people who have little, or no, clue as to the proper meanings of terms they use making decisions on what is and is not acceptable to submit to Digg. They are often quick on burying articles they don’t understand or simply do not like. Digg will often make knee-jerk responses to this stuff too by posting notices like “Warning, some users have reported that the content of this article may be inaccurate!”. “May Be Inaccurate”, do you mean to tell me that Digg is clueless on being able to judge what is accurate and what is not? Give me a break, will ya, if I ran a board that way… my members would eat me alive and use my bones to pick their teeth. Yet Digg, and possibly others can get away with such nonsense and the members smile and say “Alles klar, Herr Kommissar”. There aren’t many who have the chutzpah to call this type of stuff what it is, pure B.S.

    Do I sound critical of Digg? Sure hope so. lol All joking aside, Digg is a very useful tool that is being wasted. The majority of submittals get low or no recognition, very few responses and if the submitter or submission is something that one of the wanna-be power users at Digg don’t like – it gets buried or worse.

    Hopefully if Google buys Digg then they will make some changes in the system to make it more like the place that Digg was intended to be.

    To Rick Butts: The only thing getting flatter about earth are the heads of some of the people on it. It’s still built like Roseanne Barr, getting more and less curvaceous as it sees fit. LoL

    The Big Boys buy things for one of two reasons: Either it’s a threat or they see a profit in buying it. They aren’t going to go around buying up your domain name if they see no benefit to them in doing so, however in the event I am wrong — if Google offered me $10,000 for my domain name, I’ll sell it. lol I can always create a new domain name for what I do.

    I do searches for domain names several times a week, there are still a lot of names available out there.

  9. Posted June 21, 2008 at 10:30 am | Permalink

    Great comment John! If I do not write more is it considered Spam?

  10. Posted June 21, 2008 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    I don’t know Rocque, you are kind of a pain in the ass.

  11. Posted June 22, 2008 at 11:21 am | Permalink

    Bottom line – content that meets the needs of the mob and drives real visits and word of mouth popularity becomes more important every day.

  12. James
    Posted July 22, 2008 at 4:34 pm | Permalink

    First, Digg (in theory) is already integrated into search engines as they already rank the sites you clicked on thereby indicating immediate importance. Second, Digg comments are the gutter of the internet. Please don’t ever make another suggestion about making them visible outside Digg itself, as that is like saying “hey, let’s move these cancer cells to other parts of the body!”

  13. Posted July 22, 2008 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

    @James,

    I agree, the Digg top 100 and the Digg mafia has ruined Digg and that is why they cannot sell the thing. They have been trying to unload it since 2006.

    What I am wondering these days is what is Microsoft going to do with Delicious if they pick up the whole package as part of a Yahoo acquisition?

    Also with the Google social features Google is testing are they even interested in Digg as once thought or are they going to code in their own social engine inside Google?

  14. Posted July 22, 2008 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

    James: I think you underestimate Digg greatly, as well as grossly understate what the Digg Comments are by saying “Digg comments are the gutter of the internet“. Digg Comment sections are not “the gutter of the internet“, they are “the sewer lines of the internet world“.

    Professor Tom Lehrer once said, “Life is like a sewer… what you get out of it depends on what you put into it“. Most often sewers, like the Digg Comments, are full of useless crap that is fit only for the making of fertilizer — however if one cares to filter the waste, they may find a few priceless items buried amongst the waste and debris. Never underestimate the power of a sewer, for if it wasn’t for the sewer we would all have our houses filled with crap.

    Even sewers have a level of importance, just look at ICQ (aka Troll Central). ICQ has a power all of it’s own, as well as having some control over people that we would normally think are sane and rational. They realize what a cesspool ICQ is, they will complain about it to the end of time and whine about how the Masters at ICQ should do something to clean it up… but at the same time, the vast majority of the people will not leave the forums offered by ICQ to save their lives or the lives of their loved ones. The Digg Phenomena is similar. People will gripe about it until the end of time… but most will stay there putting up with how they are mistreated.

    The problem is that the root of the problem is not Digg or ICQ, it’s the system where site owners give away too much power (whether that power is tangible or perceived) to it’s members. People find out how to manipulate the system and seize control. This phenomena can happen on any site which offers too much power to it’s members in general. Remember, it only takes a few ‘brownshirts’ to take a place over and if the brownshirts are smart and give a little bit to appease the masses… the majority will go right along with them until they realize something is wrong – and by then it’s too late.

  15. Posted July 23, 2008 at 4:25 am | Permalink

    Ahh…don’t forget, AOL is still around and prime meat for a takeover as well, with both Yahoo and Microsoft hoping to snatch it up.

    Along with that comes Propeller (another alternative to Digg) and Mgnet (its anti-social, social bookmarking cousin), and all the other things that AOL has swallowed up over the years (Netscape, Mapquest, Winamp, Games.com, etc), and some developer & search related goodies that have been hanging around in the hidden depths of AOL’s Beta Central.

    But I don’t see Google allowing Microsoft to have that, as they have way too much invested in AOL (they practically own it without owning it), feeding the results to AOL’s search page, providing video to the AOL branded version of Youtube, etc. They might lose a little less if Yahoo gets it, as they are serving up ads on Yahoo stuff already, so it would be pretty likely they would keep making money off AOL if Yahoo got it, just not as much.

  16. Posted July 23, 2008 at 8:27 am | Permalink

    I agree that Propeller is prime pickins, the problem is that they just don’t have the traffic to be relevant. Propeller has just gone thru a redesign that many may not like. Sometimes Propeller throws coding errors for no reason and is rediculously slow when there is no reason for it but either poor coding or lack of server overhead.

    Thus, while I love Propeller, I do not see them as a alternative to the big three, Stumble, Deliciouse and Digg.