Digg.com used to be one of my favorite sites on the web to check for breaking news, random interesting stories, funny comments and the occasional LOLcat. However, since they released the new version dubbed v4, it has been nothing but a colossal clusterf*ck. Kevin Rose’s cavalier attitude about how “nobody likes change at first”, which is true for the most part, but not when you completely abandon the fundamental core of the site. Anyways, the whole point that I started writing this post was to show how I am not the only person who does not like the new version of Digg. In fact, according to Alexa, Digg v4 is turning into a disaster and is actually losing website traffic at a rapid rate. Here are few snapshots from Alexa today:
Digg’s Alexa Traffic Rank:
Digg’s Daily Pageviews
Digg’s Pageviews Per User
Digg’s Time Spent on Site
Digg’s Bounce Rate
Now it doesn’t take a genius to see that the numbers shown in the graph below are not good. At all. And since Kevin Rose proudly proclaimed that it is impossible to switch back to Digg version 3 and that we will have to just get used to Digg version 4, it looks like we will be watching the demise of Digg as users flock to sites like Reddit or create their own sites to pick up where Digg v3 left off.
Here are my beefs with Digg v4 at the top of my head:
1. Publisher accounts – Digg was founded on community. Users submit stories and other users vote for them to make them popular enough to reach the homepage. But now with v4, so-called “publisher accounts” for selected partner websites are able to automatically syndicate every single one of their stories on Digg through an RSS feed. This change alone will be the ultimate downfall of Digg.
2. Trying to be too social – Digg made these changes to hopefully reach the mainstream status of Facebook and Twitter. And so they attempted to emulate them by turning Digg into a social network. The problem is, Digg is not a social network. Most of the users on Digg do not care about what their so-called friends are digging, mainly because nobody is actually friends in real life with anyone on Digg. And that’s perfectly okay. I don’t care about “following” anybody. I just care about interesting stories and links. A website can still be an enormous success with 30 Million visitors a month and doesn’t need to hit mainstream status to be insanely profitable.
3. New layout sucks
4. No bury button
5. Still has tons of random errors even 3 weeks after the launch of v4.
And on and on.