Oops… (Closure on the Whole Sicc Issue)

Yikes! Man I was on some self-righteous Bob Woodward vibe for a minute. Anyways, the truth emerges. Sicc had already blogged about his strategies behind his rapid success:

1. Add a lot of friends.

2. Get good, unique news sources (even if you have to pay for them)

3. Digg anything and everything your friends submit

4. Submit like crazy.

He also submitted the story to Digg and got it buried too. Damn, that sounds familiar.

Basically, this was my initial strategy except for the third and the fact that I only submit a couple stories.

I don’t Digg everything from my friends and do digg lots of stuff from strangers (that I promptly add as a friend afterwards) because that goes against my values. So is Sicc a spammer? No. Do I owe him an apology for going too far with insinuations and invading his privacy? Yes.

Now, this doesn’t mean that Sicc’s actions are completely ethical even though they don’t violate any specific rule. That’s another debate and it’s not my judgement call one way or the other. It’s food for thought and something for the community to discuss at length if they want to keep Digg a quality place.

The fact is you can easily gain rank in Digg following a few simple steps. I mean even I’m in the top 600 after less than a week of taking a crack at it. I’ve seen some of my stories hit the front page even when they were a bit weak.

However, all that is immaterial. Personally, I owe Sicc an apology but overall I’m hoping that some good comes out of this and we have more meaningful dialogue on how to make Digg better.

Does this make me a “hypocritical gumshoe bastard” like an admiring reader once characterized me? By the way, hello if you’re reading this.

First thing, I had to find some good sources of news. I knew there was no way to get stories on the front page if I couldn’t find very fresh and interesting news stories. That took me maybe 6 hours and I found about 7 places to get good news from that wasn’t overused by other Digg members. A few of the places I had to actually pay for a membership fee.Next thing that I noticed were the little green stripes over the digg count. I figured out that’s what happens when one of your friends has submitted or dugg a story. So instantly I started adding friends, this lasted about 1.5 minutes when I got the “You’re adding friends too quickly” message. So I kind of put that on the back burner for the time being and just added them slowly when I had free time. When I did add them, I would sort the top digg users based on how many stories they dugg, adding the diggers with the most stories dugg to my friends list, figuring the more they digg the better the chances they will also digg my stories.

Next, I started digging stories myself and adding comments to try and make myself known. I spent at least 20 hours scanning the upcoming stories list and digging anything I liked. Some of the stories I read, and some I just judged based on the headline. If I had actually read all 5000+ stories, I’d still be reading lol. I also made sure to digg my friends stories all the time. But sometimes they had submitted something I just couldn’t digg. I’m very pro American, lots of stories on digg tend to have a hint of anti-American tone to them. I usually just skipped over those unless they were very anti-American in which case I would bury the story, friend or no friend. Yea I know, call me crazy, I still give my country the benefit of the doubt and believe we are a good nation. >=]

After befriending people and digging stories, it was time to start submitting stories. So I got started, usually submitting between 15 to 30 stories per day.


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