Digg Tries to Put DiggBar Controversy to Bed

    April 22, 2009
    Chris Crum

Update: Digg’s proposed changes to the DiggBar are now live.

Original Article: Digg made an announcement today regarding the controversial DiggBar, which some people have embraced enthusiastically, while others have shaken their fists at.

Immediately after the DiggBar was launched, some content publishers and search engine marketers started an uproar, voicing concern about Digg stealing traffic and links.

A little bit later, Digg responded saying that Google and SEOs were consulted and Digg adhered to the "leading best practices." Furthermore, Digg said it would be launching additional updates to further address the "Google juice" concerns.

Not everyone was satisfied with that response, and Digg has responded yet again, this time with some changes to how the DiggBar works.

For one, only people logged into Digg will be shown the DiggBar automatically. "While the vast majority of Digg users find the DiggBar valuable (only a very small number of users have disabled the feature or hit close with any frequency) we understand that many folks were confused when opting out. We want you to be able to have the option to permanently disable the DiggBar with ease," says Digg’s John Quinn. "For registered Digg users receiving the bar, we are also making a few changes to make the process more obvious."

They are also changing the treatment to the behavior of Digg short URLs. Now all anonymous users will be taken directly to publishers content via a permanent 301 redirect with no toolbar, straight to the site. Only logged in Digg users who have not turned it off will see the DiggBar.

Now, maybe the controversy will die down a bit. Quinn also shared some interesting stats regarding the Diggbar:

– 45% of all digging activity is happening on the DiggBar

– 25% of all DiggBar users are discovering new content they otherwise wouldn’t have by viewing related stories and content from the same source

– There’s been a 10% increase in users sharing short-URLs across Twitter, Facebook, email, and other places

If you’re still not familiar with the DiggBar, here is a video showing how it works:


DiggBar from Kevin Rose on Vimeo

Do you think Digg has done the right thing with its latest DiggBar updates? Do you think there was that much cause for concern to begin with? Tell us what you think.