Thoughts: Why Digg Didn’t Add a ‘Pictures’ Section

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Digg augmented the pre-existing categories on the site today with ‘Microsoft’ and ‘US Elections 2008’. Conspicuously missing from the mix is the much vocally demanded ‘Pictures’ category. Here’s a look at why this may be the case, and how it may ultimately be implemented.
The two categories that have been added make perfect sense. An ‘Apple’ category has been available forever now, which is completely understandable when you consider what a media darling Apple is, but after Digg removed the ‘Windows’ category from its earlier version, this category was left without a complementary Microsoft category. That is the problem they have finally addressed. Likewise, the other category also makes sense as the US political media machine has been in full force for some time now, and now that content can be conveniently categorized and retrieved from Digg.
Considering that they did tweak the system by adding new categories, it makes one immediately wonder why they would ignore the addition of a pictures category, one that has been demanded multiple times (while the ‘Elections’ category wasn’t publicly demanded by anyone). This reminds me of how Digg dealt with the plethora of videos that were being submitted to Digg a while back. While they didn’t immediately add a ‘Videos’ category to the site, they ultimately added a completely independent section solely for videos (as well as podcasts).
My personal opinion, and what I think will actually end up working better for the entire community is that Digg is gearing up for a major addition to the site that will address that particular demand of the community. With the help of my friend Steve Searer we managed to design a mock-up for how Digg may potentially factor in the ‘Pictures’ section into

Furthermore, they can handle the submissions with pictorial previews just as we have video thumbnails right now.
This way, they manage to address the community’s concerns, but at the same time can allow people to ignore the section if it isn’t appealing to them. Similarly, if you simply want to surf for interesting images, you can just navigate to that section within Digg.
I would love to hear your thoughts and opinions on this.

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  • Tim

    Hi, as I mentioned on techcrunch, personally I think it

  • wesley

    I like your blog but this post is just stupid. You managed to create a mockup of this picture section? Wow, how newsworthy..

  • Muhammad Saleem

    Thanks for that eloquent addition to the commentary and for your insight into the matter, wesley.


    … I#m glad they didn’t. People would’ve added pics of their mom watching tv

  • dewdo

    I agree with wesley.. you’re on front page of digg, how proud your mother must be..

  • dSlifer

    Well Kevin dugg the article himself, so I think he may be tipping us off you’re right.

  • Jim Assbucket

    I think it was because they didn’t want to, nutballs. Stop acting like you know what you’re talking about.

  • Nicholai

    I could not have said it better myself.

  • blinking8s

    Well, I’m a photographer with enough geek in me to spend a lot of my time lurking through digg. I do agree that many people would probably submit some retarded content, but there is such a mass of photographs out there coming from wire services, flickr, and other sources that something along the lines of digg would really bring attention to the powerful and interesting things that are out there.
    A lot of people just go “pictures…psh…who needs that” but in reality, it’s probably the second most common type of media outside typography.
    I gave a thumbs up….digg needs to do it. And we’ll just have to keep our fingers crossed that bob doesn’t submit a photo of his mom from bingo night.

  • Andrew Ferguson

    I’m pretty willing to believe that they’ll probably add in the ‘Images’ section up where ‘Video’ is as a major category, rather than a subcategory of ‘News’.

  • Jeremiah

    I agree Mu, although I’m not sure that photos need an entirely new portion of the site. One could speculate that Digg could be considering allowing users to share photos from their Flickr accounts and such, which *would* make sense to create a new addition to the site because the content flow would be much more constant.

  • Tim

    Perhaps someone should invent a new site, like digg but for photos?

  • Ali

    I wonder when the bury brigade comes by will they bury a picture for not having the right amount of light?
    Wisdom of the crowds – yeah right. Didn’t anybody tell them that most crowds are unruly.

  • michael

    With the help of my friend Steve Searer we managed to design the following mock-up for how Digg may potentially factor in the ‘Pictures’ section into
    All you did was photoshop in a few words?
    Stop bitching about digg. The time it spent you to type that could have been used productively, like finding a fix for global warming.
    stop bitching, start working.

  • Tom E. Snyder

    Why does every website have to offer everything? There are other websites for photos and videos.

  • MG Siegler

    Where is the ‘Google’ section as well? How many Google-related stories hit the front page everyday?…its gotta be pretty close Microsoft. If you’re gonna add two, why not just add a bunch?
    If they’re not going to give us a big selection of categories to sort by, they could at least make it so that the site Search isn’t constantly overloaded and not working…

  • Phunkya

    Tim wrote:
    “The front page should show the most popular items no matter what format they are in.”
    True, but images are not just a format. They are a topic in and of themselves. Photographers, pro and amateurs alike, want to look at images. That’s the subject for them, not a file format.

  • Chris Keller

    Hey Tim, I actually created a site that is a Digg for Photos + another need that I think is out there on the web (I didn’t actually create the digg page yet, just the backend). I’d like to get some feedback on the idea, so if you care, email me at my full name at Gmail

  • Brendan Sheehan jnr

    Kevin Rose dugg this, which I’m sure you know by now. (hint hint, you must be right then)

  • Tim

    Phunkya wrote:
    “True, but images are not just a format. They are a topic in and of themselves. Photographers, pro and amateurs alike, want to look at images. That’s the subject for them, not a file format.”
    Perhaps what’s missing is a “art/photography” category then?
    That highlights the other main organisational problem with digg I think, is that there is way more than just news in the news section. Surely if digg is to follow the “organise by content type” idea they should change “news” to “websites”?

  • Andrew Ferguson

    Isn’t is obvious? People like going to one place and getting everything they need. Digg itself is the proof. Rather than go visit a dozen major tech news sites and a hundred blogs, I visit one site that gives me pretty much everything I need to know.
    It’s the same reason long pieces of writing often have summaries. People like to read a quick summary and have the option to dig deeper, should they so choose.
    So people want their news, cool things, videos, and yes, photos all in one spot; Digg.

  • devolute

    Why no pictures? Maybe because this is the internet and as such, will be almost immediately riddled with pr0n.

  • puddletown

    I can’t imagine that that would become a problem on digg. it would be deleted before it was dugg.

  • Paul

    I like digg but the commenters are all mean little geeks who can only talk shit. “you’re on front page of digg, how proud your mother must be..” These guys are children, all of them. I like the articles & pics that digg links to but the commenters? god, total losers & rejects.
    “Wow, how newsworthy..”

  • Wowzer

    It’s impressive how well you present nothing.

  • Macwebby

    I think that the hesitation might be related to the fact that people could be linking or posting to NSFW content that Digg doesn’t really want to be associated with. Granted the occasional story might be considered NSFW, but with pictures you open up a whole new can of worms. Granted, videos have the same problems. I’m not really sure how they have managed to avoid that issue on the video side of things. I really doubt that the community is so well behaved that they haven’t been trying to post porn there. Heck, the porn producers would want to post there to get free advertising.
    Just my two cents.