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WeFollow Everyone…Except Leo Laporte

March 15, 2009 1 comment

So Kevin Rose, the man who created Digg created a new website and unveiled it to the world today. The website is WeFollow. WeFollow is aimed towards the website Twitter as a niche of Web 2.0. The website is a user powered directory which users are allowed to check out other tweeters based on tags. It’s basically a google for Twitter. He even made a top 100 list of the most popular Twitter accounts. When you go and look at the list, you see a slew of celebrities and corporate companies ranging from Kevin himself (obviously), Barrack Obama, and Jimmy Fallon to CNN and TechCrunch.

A surprising (well not so surprising) omission of the top 100 list is the infamous Leo Laporte. Where is he on the list? A recent update of his Twitter account shows that he has 100 152 people following him. He should be in the 28th position right ahead of Stephen Colbert but he is not there. He’s not even in the top 100 list. What is the deal Kevin Rose? As Leo points out to a friend, “crsierra” on Twitter, “I don’t think Kevin is all that fond of me any more. I seem to be making lots of enemies among the SF digerati.”
What has happened between these two former TechTV alum? First they were friends and now it seems like this feud they’ve been having for quite a LONG time now is becoming very evident in their work. It’s probably because in one of Leo’s netcasts he did not condone on Mr. Rose and Mr Albrecht drinking away during their Diggnation podcast.

Getting Diggs Without the Help of Friends

January 15, 2009 Leave a comment

It is every digger’s dream to hit the front page of Digg and many of them do not know exactly how to reach the front page. Most of it does depend on your friends on Digg or your contacts. Just like in the business world, its 80% who you know and 20% what you can do. Then there’s always that plus/minus 1% error that deals with luck. Actually who am I kidding, its probably a relative error of 5%. Anyways if you are an introvert who does not like to deal with other people even with those online or if you are just creeped out by the idea of meeting others over the interwebs and you still want at least one more digg, then you should read some of these tips. They could really help you out. I would know because they have helped me get a couple of diggs. Not enough to come close to the frontpage but hey, its a start.

1. Figure out the Peak Times
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You have to know that most of Digg’s users are probably from the West, AKA North America so in order to attract a lot of attention, or to get noticed more you should know the time zones. The time zones range from Eastern to to the Pacific Time zone. Many of Digg’s users do have jobs and are parents so most likely, they will not be checking out Digg or the newly submitted articles at night because they are either too busy with their families, or just too tired from work and are already sleeping. This downtime occurs a few hours after work, ranging from around 8 PM to the next morning. So most likely, you will not get a digg within the hour or the next day because less people have the chance to view your article. When the morning comes, the most dedicated diggers/powerdiggers will go online right before they head out to work, check their RSS feeders and submit new articles. Their will be a flood of submissions and your article will be buried underneath it all. It will be swamped and lost forever in the sea of diggs. What is worse is that someone else could have submitted the same article after you have and they got the diggs that you deserved. What you have to do is figure out the peak time of when most users will be checking through the newly submitted material. This probably occurs when they are at work. So it is better if you submit an article during the work day as that is when the peak time comes around. Most office workers get breaks every four hours or so or maybe even every two hours or they’ll just be REALLY bored and have nothing to do. Most likely they will go on Digg to satisfy their boredom and waste the time during their breaks. So its a good bet to submit an article during the working hours of the day so you’re article has a better chance of being seen by those people. Also submit articles around 3 PM – 4 PM; that is around the time when school ends and if these kids like to go on Digg, you increase your chances of being seen.

DO NOT submit an article when the work day ends because that is when a lot of the submitters for Digg will get off work, and once they do, another rush of RSS feeds will flood the submission pages.

2. Use RSS Readers
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Just like the pros, use RSS readers (and be cheap at the same time) so you can get news articles hot off the press and be the first one to submit a breaking story to Digg. Subscribe to any news website that updates their website around the clock. You have to be fast though because the powerdiggers and even more diggers use RSS feeds for their article submissions. This will not guarantee a digg though because most of the time, people won’t actually read the list of related articles and will submit anyways. Next thing you know, you’ll have the exact same story submitted by three different powerdiggers making it onto the front page in less than an hour.
With your RSS feeds, carefully choose your target sites and choose many sites because if you just choose one site and submit articles from there, well that’s not going to be fun.

3. Submit Articles from Websites that Rarely hit the Front Page
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How many times have you seen an article/comic/picture from the same website hit the front page in a week? ARS Technica is an example of a website where practically all its articles hit the front page in a day (alright I’m exaggerating). TechRadar UK is another one as well. The news is interesting though, but sooner or later people will get REALLY bored and pissed off that articles from the same source will hit the front page. They’ll go straight to the source and read those articles before they are submitted to Digg and sometimes they won’t digg it if they see it again on digg. Pictures/comics especially won’t get dugg. An example is XKCD. People keep refreshing that webpage for the latest comic trying to be the first one to submit it. In the end, diggers will be pissed that everything from the website is submitted and you can get buried.

If you want to use websites that rarely hit the front page, use ExtremeTech, or Anandtech, even submit from WebbAlert (I love you Morgan Webb!).

4. Search for the Most Interesting, Random or the Most Absurd Thing You Can Think of
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That title is pretty much self explanatory. Ex) Search for “Chaccaron Macarron music video”

or this for example, History of the Internet.

5. Publicize your profile a bit
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The more publicized your profile is, the better it is for people to relate to you or show that you have some credibility.
When people look at the profile of the person who submitted the article, they want to see someone who actually has some life in their account. If you submit an article but keep your entire profile as private, then how is anyone supposed to see what kind of person you are. Even if they see your submission history and like what you have submitted, they’ll try and be your fan. If they forget your name, and they can’t find it too bad, you just lost out on a couple of diggs.

6. Do Not Submit Articles on Current Technology
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To save time, do not submit articles belonging in the Technology section. Most likely, someone has already submitted the same article a few minutes before you just did. If you do submit these types of articles, then you better be fast and you better have dependable sources. Not every news website updates their site or puts up articles at the same time when late breaking news comes to the eye of the public. You have to know which source announces it first and you better hope it is something good. Again, you also have to be very fast.

7. Figure out trends on Digg
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Figure out what type of articles have been hitting the front page more recently. Sports stories have been taking up some space on the front page, so you should submit some sports stories hoping the sports geeks will see it.
Once Digg opened up its doors to expand past technology, the odd story articles have made the front page many times. Political news and Current event news especially have made a big impact on Digg. They pretty much take up most of the front page now. You have to learn to submit the type of articles that will appeal to the masses. If you submit a tech article, then most likely only geeks/nerds/techies will digg your story before it hits the front page. If you submit a political news story, more people would probably digg it as it could have a profound importance on them. Currently I have been seeing A LOT of ‘odd stuff’ news stories hitting the front page, so find ‘odd stuff’ articles like the boy who’s cheek had been ripped out by his teacher to submit. Currently these kinds of stories will appeal to the masses and get the attention of diggers so submit those types of articles.

8. Create Multiple Accounts and Digg your Own Submission
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If you do this, you’re a douchebag.

9. Submit your own Thoughts
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If you have something interesting or important to say, then create an account on any blogging service, WordPress, LiveJournal, Blogger, or Tumblr. There are more services out there in this age of Web 2.0 so use whichever service you like the best. Once you type out your rant, submit it to digg and hope someone out there in the world likes what you have to say.
Oh and do the same thing with pictures or videos.

On second thought, this might be against Digg’s TOS so…don’t do this this a lot. lol

10. Find articles from Other social Websites and Submit Those Stories!
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Title is self explanatory. Don’t worry, a lot of people on Digg use this tactic so you will not be alone or feel any guilt doing this. It’s the same thing as using RSS readers, but it is not so up to the minute but it is still useful.

11. Learn How to Write Good Titles
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I forgot what the name of this story was called, but I saw this on Digg about a year ago. Anyways if you write a good title that will explode in the face of a digger, then you will get their attention and their interest in your story will rise. If you have a well written description, even better; it lures them in. If you just copy and paste the first paragraph of the story into the description, some people might bury you for that because they think you did not take the time to read the article. You just read the title, and submitted.

What it is Like to Get Dugg

January 11, 2009 Leave a comment

If you do not know who Kevin Rose is, then you should be ashamed of yourself. Well you don’t have to be because not that many people outside of the technology industry know who this man is and if you are a casual internet user, you probably still do not know who he is. Well I’ll tell you, he is the man who created Digg, Revision3. and Pownce. AND before all that, he is one of the most beloved hosts of THE SCREENSAVERS and TechTv (Damit Paul Allen!). Digg is one of the best and most innovative Web 2.0 websites created, it has revolutionized the internet and is pretty much the website that has introduced social media to the people of today. Well it was one of the best web sites ever until it became a dictatorship, but let’s not get into that today.

Anyways, for a new user on Digg, it is great to look at the articles on the front page and digg them. Basically digging an article is the same as bookmarking your favourite websites but instead of saving the website to your internet cache on your computer, the digg just saves the article online in your account (and yes, I just used Digg as a verb). New users on Digg will most likely digg their most favourite articles and they will have a slight bias of what they want to digg. Some, will digg political submissions, some will digg technology submissions, and some will just digg those random LOLcats or XKCD comic whenever it appears. Slowly though, their bias will digress, and they’ll just digg anything that seems interesting to them. The point is, Digg has opened peoples’ eyes up to the world and allows people to discover new things that they never heard about or even seen before like that hexadecimal passkey allowing one to crack the DRM on HDDVDs. I remember that storm of anger Digg caused when they started deleting/banning accounts.

Over time though, when the new Digg user finally gets some balls, they will decide to start submitting articles. This epiphony that they have experienced will give them the sense of individualism and courage to start submitting articles. It only occurs though once they believe they can and they are not intimidated by the likes of: MrBabyMan, MakiMaki, msaleem, or badwithcomputer. These guys are Digg’s top users or as many would like to call them, powerdiggers; they have contributed/submitted over 26 000 articles, dugg about 400 000 articles (excluding their own), and have over a 1000 friends altogether. Talk about a Digg overload. These guys contribute probably over 80% of Digg’s top stories found on the front page every day. They are pretty much the life of Digg and have made sure Digg has become of the top Web2.0 websites ever. When most new users decide to start submitting articles, they will all feel the sense of anger and hatred towards Digg as well pretty much, no one has dugg any of their comments. Be reasonable though, it is a rare sight that someone will come across your submission and even rarer if they decide to digg it or not.

I have been through this process so many times as I try to submit articles. Most of the articles I have submitted have not been dugg by anyone else. Everytime I check a few hours later after I submit the article, I get really pissed off because no one has dugg my articles. What pisses me off even more is if I submit an article but a similar article is posted after my submission and it gets dugg. I hate it when users find something interesting and when they submit it they don’t look at the related articles that might be the same. They just hit the ‘Totally Original, I swear’ button and off they go. For a long time, many people will submit articles without another digg and this will put a lot of users off from trying to submit their own articles. The main factor behind this problem are the powerdiggers who are pretty much the gatekeepers of the website. They’re usually the ones who don’t read the similar articles and will just hit the ‘Totally Original, I Swear’ button. Plus they do have that ability of reading a hundred articles in less than five minutes, I wonder how they do it?! *Note the sarcasm*.

Finally though after tears, and heartache, sweat, and blood, someone finally sees your submission and diggs it. When you see that you’re article has two diggs, it is one of the happiest moments ever on Digg. It basically signifies your first fan, or your first paycheck, or someone has dugg you out and you lost your Digg virginity; that fine patch of grass is not so innocent anymore! When all the happiness and glee has drained out of your system, you just sit back and relax, close your eyes and think that you are, ‘t3h l337ness’ or somewhere along those lines. What is amazing is that someone else, somewhere around the world likes what you have done and have shown you their appreciation by digging your article. This euphoria of happiness from getting a digg gives people the courage and confidence to submit another article. Unfortunately, most of the time that second article they submit won’t be dugg so they enter a viscious cycle of anger asking themselves that their submission was not good enough. One day though, it will all change when more and more people start to digg your submission. The most diggs I have ever gotten is twenty and when I saw that, I almost pissed my pants with glee and I did think to myself that I was, ‘t3h l337ness’. Unfortunately, I have never been able to gain that status back and I have slumped back into a cycle of anger and despair.

It is fun though, submitting articles to Digg and hoping that one day someone will digg your submission. If it does not happen, just keep trying and if that does not work, start making some new friends on Digg to make sure all goes well. To many, getting dugg feels like you have accomplished something you thought was impossible and in some sense it is true except for the impossible part. It can become the happiest moment in your life until you get three diggs, then four diggs, then five, and so on and so on until you reach that milestone of reaching the front page. That’s what all Digg users want, to some day hit the front page. Just keep trying, keep submitting, make new friends on Digg, and one day you will get that satisfaction of hitting the front page. Just don’t be a douchebag and game the system!

Pownce is Shutting Down! ohs Noes Kevin Rose

December 2, 2008 Leave a comment

About three hours ago, the Pownce crew sent out this e-mail to everyone in the Pownce community.

We are sad to announce that Pownce is shutting down on December 15,
2008. As of today, Pownce will no longer be accepting new users or new
pro accounts.

To help with your transition, we have built an export tool so you can
save your content. You can find the export tool at Settings > Export.
Please export your content by December 15, 2008, as the site will not
be accessible after this date.

Please visit our new home to find out more:
http://www.sixapart.com/pownce

Our thanks go out to everyone who contributed to the Pownce community,

The Pownce Crew

BOOOOOOOOZZZZOOOORS!

So Pownce is being acquired by Six Apart and it seems like it will be dramatically changed. It is a shame though because Pownce is actually a great social site which showcases and combines all the best parts of the other competing social web sites. The best part was the file sharing feature it has and the ability to share music files and have them play on your posts was pretty cool. Now its going to be…Typepad, I’m not going for that.

The worst part is, I was planning to attend CUSEC (Canadian University Software Engineering Conference) in January so I could ask Leah about the kick ass stuff she does on Pownce and what up and coming crazy ideas they have in store, but it looks like that won’t happen. So sad.

I’ll still go anyway and ask her about it. haha

The ‘T’ Word

June 27, 2008 Leave a comment

Have you heard about the new ‘T’ word that everyone is going crazy for? That’s right, Twitter.  The newest tech savvy web 2.0 project created.  Sigh…I still don’t understand why people have to text to a blog about how they are doing every single minute. Dam these attention whores.  Oh and I am not going to go into the whole feud between the cheif TWiT, Leo Laporte and (former friend?) Internet Superstar, Martin Sargent. Haha, I’m only joking. I’m talking about the man who created digg, the president of Diggnation, Kevin Rose.