A lot of new people starting out on Digg.com have some of the same preconceived notions coming into the site – as those of us who have been on the site for a while did when we started. While there is an inevitable learning curve with any social media site while one learns the ropes, if you are new to Digg specifically here are common pitfalls frequently experienced by newer users.
1) Digg is a democracy: in point of fact there is a lot of behind-the-scenes work that goes on with regards to upcoming stories making the front page of Digg. The algorithms of Digg are designed to enable newer users and new sites to frontpage more easily. However, the flipside is: new users on and sites submitted to Digg are watched more closely as possible spam. Further, there are even “secret editors” (Digg employees) that make final decisions on some content and who might choose to promote something (or not) for unknown reasons.
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The Conservapedia is a conservative version of Wikipedia that¬ is anything but what it claims to be: an¬ “encyclopedia you can trust.” The Conservapedia goes to great lengths to indicate that Wikipedia is full of trivial and even misleading articles, and emphasize the high quality of their own offerings. OK, agree or disagree, that sounds interesting, right? Let’s check out their mission statement:
A different take on things than Wikipedia, from a conservative perspective. Fascinating! Heck, I’ll admit – even as an active Wikipedia user – that both good and bad articles get published, it’s part of the shared knowledge system. However, right next to their mission statement they have a breaking news story that implies Wikipedia editors are in on a murder plot. For the moment let’s just look at the story, and table the obvious question: why, of all of the breaking news stories in the world, does theirs concern Wikipedia and some WWF pro wrestler?
First, there is nothing to suggest¬ subsequent edits weren’t made by people who read the first edit. What sounds like a conspiracy theory is actually a lone gunman scenario.¬ Moreover, the term ‘editor’ to¬ a non-Wikipedia user probably implies someone in a position of authority and oversite. However, the person in question was an anonomous user. In fact, anyone in the world could have made that edit! That is the equivalent of implying that an anonomous caller to a news tip line is a reporter. Whew, OK, let’s catch our breath here and look farther down the site. Oh wait, this sounds promising:
Well nice! Yes, the Conservapedia insists that the Earth was created 6,000 years ago¬ but at least they’re open to other viewpoints, right? Well, right under the above section on the front page we find something rather surprising. Specifically, a pair of quotes, from the bible and history respectively, that show a rather impressively definitive perspective:
The biblical quote is fairly harmless – though it still calls into question how welcome unbelievers truly are on the site. Much more interesting is the historical quote. So wait, let me see here, democracy is built on a belief in God … which really only the church can provide a basis for. So, in other words, we won’t have a whole democracy in the long run unless we are a fully Christian nation? Wow. OK, so we welcome the heathens … so we can convert them?
At this point, what else is there to say? There are plenty of more hilarious, bizarre and downright strange articles to look at on Conservapedia. Still, if you want to learn more about the Conservapedia in a technical, logical or reliable sense, you might as well look at the Wikipedia article on Conservapedia. You’re at least somewhat more likely to get a straight answer that way.
LiveLeak.com is a sometimes-controversial video-based site which receives over a half-million visitors a day and was, until just now, completely unindexed in Google – because they accidentally told Google not to index their site! The funniest part is that, as of 4 AM PST, their own front page still has a ‘try it for yourself’ link that encourages users to see that they aren’t indexed by Google.
In¬ a rather tragic personal video a depressed-sounding LiveLeak administrator describes how he has been trying to contact Google about this potential act of censorship. Meanwhile, this video has received comments ranging from ranging from “google has stepped out of bounds” to “google is with the government in censoring the internet and they must be stopped!!!” Meanwhile, of course, they were informed (by a friend of mine) of the problem and, as you can see below, have fixed it:
Even the¬ Wikipedia article on Google censorship¬ contains an (albeit now contested) sub-section pointing out this issue.¬ ¬ How can a site with a half a million visitors a day¬ and numerous web¬ professionals looking into the problem NOT figure this out sooner? Go(d)ogle only knows, but now that they have removed the bot they are sure to get a flood of links from Google. Maybe it was just reverse psychology to begin with :P