digg is a social media site that has been around for some time now, it launched in 2004 (thats a long time in internet time) and its has many millions of members. How does it all work? we ask number 1# digger Mr Baby Man.
For those who don’t know you can you tell us a little about yourself?
I’m a film editor with over 20 years experience in the film industry. I also produce and host a tech roundtable podcast at TheDrillDown.com. Above all else, I’m a social media enthusiast who is fully engaged with all forms of social networking.
Can you tell us a little bit about how digg works and why your so involved in that online community?
Digg is a social news site whose stories are submitted and voted upon by the community. Stories that receive the most votes (across a diverse set of criteria) are promoted to the front page, where they’re potentially seen by thousands of viewers. What I appreciate about Digg is it’s a meritocracy, where the best links naturally rise to the surface, all conditions being equal.
You are regularly the top digger on digg.com, can you tell our readers what that actually means?
This means more stories that I have submitted have been promoted to Digg’s front page than any other user (about 4500 front page stories, by last count). It has been said (and I apologize for not having the metrics to back this up) that my links have sent more traffic on a daily basis to promoted sites than The New York Times online.
Do you see social media changing the way that people interact offline?
Absolutely, both for good and bad. Real-world interpersonal skills seem to be suffering as more people tend to get sucked into their personal devices, and at the same time, our association with social media is presenting us with a new language (and medium) in which to engage with each other, and we’ve developed relationships across a broader global spectrum than was ever possible before the advent of social media.
Do you think that social media is changing commercial media and is this bad or good?
It’s neither good nor bad. We spend more time online than ever before, and social media is the language (and currency) of the online world. Commercial media is merely adapting to that reality, as they must to survive.
You have had almost 175,000 Diggs, and run a popular site thedrilldown.com where do you find the time?
It’s not easy. It requires a lot of personal organization, but I wouldn’t be doing it if I didn’t have a genuine love for technology and social media. The fact that I don’t need much sleep also helps!
Do you see Digg as a useful platform for small business to promote itself?
Absolutely, as is regularly evident on Digg’s front page. In the hands of a savvy marketer, Digg can be extremely useful to drive tons traffic to small (and large) businesses alike.
If a business does promote itself through digg, is there etiquette that should be observed?
There’s no posted etiquette, but common sense dictates that Digg users are going to be turned off by hard-sell tactics. A guiding principle is to consider what value you (as a business) can provide to the user. Give generously of your value, and users will naturally flock back to you.
What do you think the future of social media is, and is it rosy?
Social media has, and will continue to become a ubiquitous part of our everyday lives. As generations grow up in the already-established world of social media and user-generated content, social interaction with every aspect of our daily routine will become second nature to us. I don’t see anything wrong with that future.
Do you think that being in the top echelons of Digg gives you the power to direct what trends on social media or is it totally beyond control?
I never considered what I do as ‘directing’ trends, I just post what personally appeals to me. If anything, I feel my strong suit is in being able to recognize content that also appeals to the broadest base of users. I feel my role is really that of a curator, sifting through countless links to share that which I feel are of the highest quality.
What advice can you give our trainees when thinking about using the social medias?
Again, I can’t stress strongly enough, provide good value to the end user, and they will recognize your value. The hard sell may be effective in the short term, but it’s not sustainable for repeat traffic. If you want users to keep coming back to your site, consistantly provide them something useful to come back for.
Andrew Sorcini, thank you for taking the time to talk to WCB and we hope to keep up with your Digging!
Thanks for the interview. It was my pleasure!
If you would like to hear more from Andrew go to the drilldown or of course, go to the home page of Digg.