I'm not talking about a diversity of opinions. You need only glance at the comments on a front page story to know that diggers have a wide variety of opinions no matter what the subject! Some of these opinions are funny and others are not so funny.
What I am talking about is a diversity in sources and content. Well, Digg does not actually host any content... No, I take that back. The content Digg hosts is the opinions of the members in regards to the links submitted. Digg is a book marking site and submitters provide a link, title and a few sentences to describe what is being linked to. I hesitate to say "article" being linked to as many things on Digg are not articles. There are videos, podcasts, images and other things being linked to on Digg. Some are more worthy of being linked to than others but, that is not the focus of this article.
When I talk about diversity in this context I am talking about the diversity of sources. Just how many different web sites are submitted to Digg? How many of those make it to the front page? Do some sites get more front page time than others? Because all web sites are not created equal there will be an imbalance in regards to what makes it to the front page.
Most of this has to do with quality. If you see two similar articles on a subject and they are both submitted about the same time, you are very likely to make a judgment call based on the source URL. For example, if you were to see a story about some celestial phenomenon and one is a link to news.yahoo.com and the other is spacescience.com you are more than likely going to digg the spacescience.com story and mark the news.yahoo.com story as a dupe. More than likely you will be correct, Yahoo news is just an aggregator of news stories and it is probably the same exact article.
What happens if you see a story about a rumored video game release? This is a bit more difficult. Because it is a rumor the odds are that the link is not to an official web site such as nintendo.com. In cases such as this you are more likely to digg the story if it comes from a web site you know. If you do not know any of the web sites involved than you have to actually read the story first. Yes, I know there is a big debate going on between the "Digg is a book marking site" and the "read before you Digg" crowds but I'm not covering that in this article. So, you go to the websites and look over the news. You then make a judgment call as to which is better in your eyes.
So far we do not have a diversity problem at all, Digg appears to be working as it should. Let's throw a little wrench into things.
Let's say that you encounter a story written about something that is currently very popular. It might be a new gadget released at a trade show.
1) Digg the story that is closest to the source.
2) Digg the story on the more popular web site.
Yes, I know that digging the story by the higher rated user is more likely to result in the story you digg getting on the front page but I did specify "all things being equal."
This is where the diversity breaks down. When something new and popular comes out diggers do not want to see five stories about it on the front page at one time, well except for those Apple and Digg fans, they want all of Digg to be stories about their personal fetish!
This is the diversity breakdown. When sites such as engadget and arstechnica run stories on the same thing both will be submitted to Digg. No one really cares about the dupe filter when they submit the story unless it sends you to the story itself having been submitted by someone else. Where this becomes particularly troublesome problem is when a new entity is submitted to Digg and has to go against a current favorite. If they are lucky they will only be buried as a dupe. If they are unlucky they will be buried as spam and be banned from Digg. For the most part, when engadget is up against arstechnica the earlier story will win out. This works well enough but rather than bury a story as a dupe when it is only a dupe of the subject and not the content, I'd much rather see it marked as something else. There may be two articles on new coins being minted but one might focus on gold coins while the other is about silver coins, if the titles are similar enough one may get buried as a dupe even though they are not dupes.
Couple the popular site problem with the top digger controversy and you end up with a lack of diversity on Digg. I have no idea how to fix this and it may not even be a problem that the community feels is worth addressing. If a user can become a "top digger" in 30 days why can't a web site become a "top dugg web site" by virtue of its own content? Actually, it can.
What I have seen is that once a web site gets a few home page stories at least one "top digger" will adopt it as a source and posts its new content as soon as it becomes available. Why does this happen? It's actually very simple. Once a site becomes hot on Digg the odds of its stories being promoted increases. With increased odds of story promotion you also increase the odds of members submitting those stories so that their own rank on Digg will improve. This can have a negative affect as well if less than 100% of the content is good and users start submitting 100% of the content. There is nothing the site owner can do about this other than improve the quality of the content offered. Assuming the content creator can keep the content good this web site will now become a Digg staple.
Example of a Digg user who made it in 30 days:
Example of a web site that came out of no where.