Digg, Software

Top Diggers list is back

Digg removed its top users list this morning. However, as I mentioned yesterday,

It’s an exercise in futility. A competent programmer could easily throw together a page scraper to determine the top submitters, so when the dust settles, Digg will still have problems with pay-for-play, but the most prolific users will no longer be recognized by Digg for their work that makes the site so successful.

To prove my point, I’ve done exactly that: I’ve put together a script that displays the top 100 users at Digg, with the list being updated twice per day. You can see the list here.

Update: I do work for Netscape, but this has nothing to do with them. I did this on my own time and of my own volition.

Also, I didn’t create this list for any mean-spirited reasons; I enjoy Digg and the service it provides, but I think Kevin made the wrong choice in removing the top users list. I’m not trying to profit off of this, and I’m not trying to scalp members from Digg for Netscape. I’m just proving a point – this data is easily attainable by anyone who is motivated to get it. Removing the top users list from digg.com does little in stopping people from finding out who the top Diggers are.


21 thoughts on “Top Diggers list is back

  1. HTMKSteve: changing their API would have no effect, as I’m not using it. As long as they still publish the names of the users along with their stories, it can be tracked to determine the top users.

  2. Am I the only one who thinks you’re a jerk for doing this?

    Why not respect the (seemingly honorable) intent of Kevin, who is the one who founded AND runs a service that you profess to appreciate? Simply because “[a] competent programmer could easily throw together a page scraper” doesn’t mean that:
    1) It’s the RIGHT thing to do
    2) You have a responsibility to beat your chest and BE that programmer

    In fact, I think far too much of the ‘net and the Web 2.0’osphere (blech) is hell bent on the “well, if it *can* be done, then let’s do it!”

    That’s bullshit, IMHO. Admirable restraint is clearly in short supply nowadays.

    The annoyed curmudgeon,

  3. sorry about the dropping of the “e” on your name. I was just doing a quick post before leaving the day gig; and TC had put it up without the “e”.

    My apologies! btw, great scrape.


  4. God job man. It’s not the same though, ya know? This is fucking bullshit, why should we have to go and do these things, what was so bad about competition on digg?

    Oh well, good job anyway!

  5. Will Diggs Removal of Top Users Start a Decline in Diggs and Participation ?


    Here are the final screenshots of the Final Rankings by The Top 30 Digg Users before the changeover in policy.

    There is one for All Users and Active Users.

    Now this blogcompiled a twice daily update of the Top 100.

    We can compare as time goes by, the overall effect on participation and Diggs

  6. Zaibatsu says:

    Damnit msaleem passed me again. What’s a digger to do!!! Okay everyone you’ve got to Digg my new amazing Apple, Wii post that’ll give you the top ten lowdown with photos of a super secret Digg (anti – Microsoft) agenda.

  7. The removal of the rank number will have no effect. (Perhaps this will prove wrong the many people who claimed I was just scraping profile pages for that rank value.) They also removed the number of profile views, which I was displaying as well, so my page will no longer contain that data. Because of that, ranking is now determined first by number of popular submissions, and then by the popular ratio, rather than number of profile views. That is the only change.

  8. I think this script is not very accurate. I found several scripts that do the same function and they were all different in their results. So, I don’t know what is the best one!

  9. What exactly is the digg list? By top users do you mean members who post digg links or users that just click on a digg link already in place to digg what they’ve just read?

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