Thursday, August 11, 2011

What Is Digg Up To?

Digg seems to be innovating fast to try to bring back it's glory days. This week they launched Newswire, which is pretty nice and are now conducting a survey for users to test upcoming features. You are presented at the top of the page with "Digg is inviting users to test a new site feature. If you would like to participate, take the survey!"

There is just one paragraph in a blog post today by Matt Williams,CEO of Digg, that talks about it:
Very soon, we'll start beta testing and scheduling user groups for our next innovation. We're eager to share our new direction and to hear your opinions. If you're interested in participating in our upcoming beta, please add yourself to our invite list.
Lets turn to the survey for some possible hints at what they are up to. Questions 5, 6, and 8 are particularly interesting. Five and six are regarding the topics and which you would be more apt to frequent.
  • Alternative energy/green
  • Animals
  • Apple/Google/Microsoft
  • Education/learning
  • Election 2012
  • Funny/humor
  • Gadgets
  • Health care
  • Local news
  • Movies
  • Natural disasters
  • NCAA
  • News for a specific University
  • President Obama
  • Psychology
  • Religion/Atheism
  • Sex & Health
  • Travel

As you may, or may not know, their are currently ten topics available on Digg. Adding more would not be revolutionary and some of the ones mentioned would fall more into a sub-topic architecture. But, their are a few that raise some thought.
  • Apple/Google/Microsoft
    • This one could fall into a technology sub-topic, but could easily be more directed at being a company specific function beyond the three listed tech giants. Will their be a way to follow particular companies' associated Diggs?
  • Local news
    • This is the big one! Question eight on the survey also asks what town you live in; are they ensuring they get a good sampling of places for the beta test? Bringing local news to Digg would be huge. Could it become a information source? Maybe news and stories will be present on Digg that have not been Dugg.
  • News for a specific University
    • Hmmm. Could this be a way to follow the news of one college? It does not seem like there would be enough news coming from enough universities to support that. Maybe it will be more like a way to follow a specific topic and get notifications? Or, will people going to a college be able to associate themselves with a university and all the Diggs by a college's student body are aggregated together?

Then again, perhaps the questions have nothing to do with what they are testing. Whatever the outcome I am excited to see Digg moving forward.