Five ways to make Digg more social

Five ways to make Digg more social

Summary: When Kevin Rose announced that the top digger list would be no more, he also alluded to plans to make the "social" news site, even more social. Here are my five suggestions for how the site could improve its social networking functionality.


When Kevin Rose announced that the top digger list would be no more, he also alluded to plans to make the "social" news site, even more social. At the moment each member of the site has a profile, and can add "friends" in order to keep track of what stories others have submitted and "dugg", but that's where the social networking features begin and end.

While I don't have any inside information on Digg's plans, here are 5 things I think Digg should do to make the site more social.

  1. Enhanced user profiles. Right now profiles have some basic contact details, an optional photo or avatar, and statistics on a user's digging activity. I'd like to see the option added to pull in other content from elsewhere on the net, such as a user's Flickr stream, YouTube favourites or blog's RSS feed. In fact, Digg profiles should become widget friendly, so that any number of web services can be displayed.
  2. Recommended friends. Digg should automatically alert users to others who consistently digg the same stories, who aren't already on their friends list. (Why not have a friend compatibility feature?)
  3. Tagging. A user should be able to tag stories to make it possible to organize and discover previous submissions and diggs. Some refer to Digg as a social bookmarking site, but currently it's not very useful for anything other than browsing the current submissions. Tagging would be a much needed way of utilizing Digg's archives.
  4. Messaging. With increased social networking features, Digg needs a way for users to send private messages to each other.
  5. Forums. Currently the only discussions that can take place on Digg are comments surrounding a particular submission. Users need a place to continue the conversation long after a story has dropped off the front page. The forum would also give users a place to discuss Digg itself. It's well documented that the site has faced many teething problems as its user-base and influence has grown. Yet, at times it seems like there isn't a mechanism for users to engage with Digg's management, to help solve any problems.

So that's my five suggestions -- it will be interesting to see what new social networking features Digg actually roles out in the coming months.

If you have any ideas of your own, leave a comment.

Related post: Digg, the times they are a changing


Topic: Social Enterprise

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  • Nice list Steve

    The one thing I'd add is, similar to recommended friends - recommended
    stories.?? nails this but is otherwise subpar in my experience (though I haven't
    looked a the new rev last week yet).

    Congrats btw on getting this on the front page of Digg - your column here is a great
    read.??I like it so much I'm willing to put up with the ZDNet commenting
    requirements in order to say so - even though they make me literally scream in rage
    in the middle of my office.
    • Thanks

      Thanks Marshall for the kind words -- and I agree a recommended stories feature would be good.
      Steve O'Hear
  • New Social Networking Site

    There is a social media/social networking site launching sometime this week that incorporates the suggestions you had above almost verbatim. I hadn't seen your blog post before, but have talked to the developers. They ran down a list of features since I initially asked what made them different from digg. It seems they have tagging, more emphasis on profiles, a complete private messaging system, a friend suggestion tool that helps you connect with like minded people, and groups which allow for the addition of simple forums. It's going to definitely be a site to watch closely over the coming months.

    (they say they are lauching this week if all goes well)