Digg vs. Slashdot (or, traffic vs. influence)

Digg vs. Slashdot (or, traffic vs. influence) (kottke.org) Kotke does a post on Digg vs. Slashdot based on a story he had in December that hit both sites independently with enough time to kind of measure effect and concludes, “over a period of about 4 days, Slashdot has sent more than 4 times the number of visitors to kottke.org than Digg — despite a 18-hour headstart for Digg — and the aftershock for Slashdot is much larger and prolonged. It’s been four days since the Slashdotting and kottke.org is still getting 15,000 more visitors a day than usual. This indicates that although Digg may rapidly be catching up to Slashdot traffic-wise, it has a way to go in terms of influence.”

Irrespective of who produces traffic I find myself using Digg much more these days to monitor news than I do Slashdot.

Kotke adds, “I am unconvinced that a voting system like Digg’s can produce a quality editorial product…it’s too much of an informational firehose. Bloggers and Slashdot story submitters might like drinking from that hose, but there’s just too much flow (and not enough editing) to make it an everyday, long-term source of information.”

Here I have to disagree with Kotke. It depends on how you use Digg. One of the things that is nice about Digg is that you can effectively filter your results by using RSS. Basically I set up RSS feeds to Digg search terms that I’m interested in. My RSS reader then only picks up Digg topics on where my interests are. I much prefer this to Slashdot where much of what is posted is of little interest for me. By setting up smart RSS feeds and thus filtering Digg you can reduce the firehose effect and I find it the most reliable fastest way to find breaking news on subjects that you are interested in today.

Of course every now and again when I’m bored I’ll go to Digg Spy and look at all new stories being queued, or to the front page stories, but 95% of the time I’m just monitoring the search RSS feeds that I’m interested in and here I find my results much more relevant than Slashdot and for sure news breaks much faster on Digg than Slashdot.

In fact, where did I find this very article? On a Digg search feed for the term Digg that I have set up.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    I agree, I think digg is much better, Slashdot ha been horribly inconsistent in getting news out timely and avoiding duplicates of stories. It’s painfully just a “here’s what we think is interesting” aproach, which honeslty makes it like every other blog, but other blogs usually are much more up to speed.

    I use a digg search for hdtv and have found several items, like the MariposaHD site i posted about and you linked to, that I otherwise wouldn’t know about. I submitted the same article to Slashdot later, rejected.

    This is not a slam or indictment of slashdots editorial policy, but I find it much better to at least have a chance at seeing the 100 interesting articles that maybe didn’t make the front page, instead of the 10 that did today.

    Maybe slashdot should offfer an rss feed of all stories submitted?

    Richard – HDBeat.com

  2. ThomasGerigk says:

    Digg has a nicer layout and is easier to read.

    If Slashdot were to adapt a newer layout it may also attract a new group of readers.