Posted February 21, 2007 10:50 pm by with 10 comments

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I know this is going to sound like linkbait, but it’s not.

I’m getting tired of reading blog posts that are simply pandering to Digg users. You all know the format: catchy title, top 10 list, praising Digg, Google, Apple, etc. The very fact that I’m now able to pick these posts out, suggest it won’t be long before the majority start recognizing the same pattern.

While I’ll admit Digg sends a lot of traffic, and I’m always happy to see a post here make the Digg homepage, I don’t want to fall into the trap of writing posts that attract Diggers and don’t appeal to our regular readers.

So, as of today, I’m making a “Not-Made-For-Digg” pledge to our readers. What does that mean? Am I banning Digg users? No, as I said, if they happen to find one of our posts Digg-worthy we’d be flattered. It does mean that I will not construct any future posts with the sole purpose of getting on the homepage of Digg (not that we ever really did much of that anyway).

By making this pledge, I want to send two messages:

  1. To our readers – we’re writing content for you and not for some fleeting Digg user.
  2. To other bloggers – when you write purely for Digg, it’s obvious and it’s a turn-off to your regular readers.

So, there you go. Not much more to say really.

  • Well put Andy, I think we all have been tiring of these lately.

  • I actually don’t mind reading Made-For-Digg posts if they are funny and well-written.

    But I do appreciate your gesture of focusing on quality content instead of purely digg-friendly stuff.

  • Andy, spot on!

  • I’m sure it will calm down a little when people realise snappy title or if your content ain’t up to scratch or your audience is too small you don’t stand much of a chance to reaching digg front page.

    Personally I think Stumble has a lot more possibilities…

  • Being a blogger Andy, I am sure you sometimes want to test the SMO space and see how Digg, Netscape, StumbleUpon, etc. work.

    There is no better place to do that than on your blog with your current audience.

    Most would appreciate it if you share the results with them afterwards.

    But as you said, some people take it too far and do it too often.

  • Barry – I agree and I’ve tested different social networks by submitting content. However, I’ve never actually writtin a post purely to see if I can get on Digg (I’ve written posts that I thought might appeal to Diggers, but not just for them).

    I guess I’m worried about contributing to the digg-frenzy that could hurt us all.

  • I think Andy’s right to think about diggers as a secondary audience, it when bloggers forget about their regular readers at the expense of social media they run the risk of alienating readers.

  • Lee Odden

    As far as made for Digg content, I think it’s giving Digg an awful lot of credit. Top ten posts and lists etc have been around for a while.

    We still publish such posts with no possibility of being submitted to Digg because readers respond to it.

    Interestingly enough, since our site is not allowed to have stories submitted to Digg the past two months, Online Marketing Blog traffic, page views and RSS subscribers (not counting the Google Reader boost) are up 30%.

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  • I’ve simply made a “no crap content for Digg” pledge, while still enjoying the occasional front page appearance.

    So far, so good. 🙂