If You Think The NY Times 'Gets' Social Media, Digg This!

from the they-did-what-now? dept

All day Monday, I tried to figure out why the New York Times adding links to Digg, Newsvine and Facebook was a newsworthy story covered by lots of folks as an indication that the Times somehow "gets" new media. These are the same types of links that plenty of publications have been including for quite some time, including many of the NYT's competitors -- and for no one else was it considered newsworthy. As some others have noted, if the NY Times is so intent on "joining the conversation" why doesn't it allow comments? In fact, others have noticed that plenty of mainstream news sites including the Washington Post, CBS and Newsweek all allow comments on their stories. If so, why isn't that a "big news story" like the NYT including a link to Digg? For all the talk of how big a step this is, all it really shows is (a) how far behind the NYT is from plenty of other publications and (b) how it seems to think it's a newsworthy fact that it's barely (but not really) caught up to its competitors. There are also those who say that this has a lot less to do with "getting" social media and a lot more to do with trying to drive more traffic to the NY Times websites. If that's really the plan, it's pretty likely to fail. It's not clear why they'd choose sites like Facebook and Newsvine, which aren't known for being big traffic drivers, rather than more popular sites. And, while Digg does drive a bit of traffic if your stories get to the front page, it seems unlikely that a NY Times story is any more likely to get on Digg due to these links. Our own experiments with a "Digg this" link has shown no impact. We get on the front page of Digg just as often as before we had the links. In the meantime, if the NY Times wants either more traffic or to be a part of the online conversation, we'd suggest that beyond just adding comment abilities, it recognize that both people and companies want a way to respond to articles in the NYTimes -- and that they'd probably get a lot more traffic if they actually made its best content to non-subscribers.
Hide this

Thank you for reading this Techdirt post. With so many things competing for everyone’s attention these days, we really appreciate you giving us your time. We work hard every day to put quality content out there for our community.

Techdirt is one of the few remaining truly independent media outlets. We do not have a giant corporation behind us, and we rely heavily on our community to support us, in an age when advertisers are increasingly uninterested in sponsoring small, independent sites — especially a site like ours that is unwilling to pull punches in its reporting and analysis.

While other websites have resorted to paywalls, registration requirements, and increasingly annoying/intrusive advertising, we have always kept Techdirt open and available to anyone. But in order to continue doing so, we need your support. We offer a variety of ways for our readers to support us, from direct donations to special subscriptions and cool merchandise — and every little bit helps. Thank you.

–The Techdirt Team


Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  1. identicon
    Josh, 12 Dec 2006 @ 9:04pm

    I love Digg however...

    Digg and NYT differ so vastly in content, I don't see how providing spammy little icons everywhere serves any purpose, nor do I see why anyone there would want to provide a comment section when it will no doubt be filled with idiotic banter that detracts from the article at hand, and the general integrity of the site.

    Even if they don't 'get' it, I am certainly thankful they don't.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Make this the First Word or Last Word. No thanks. (get credits or sign in to see balance)    
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Discord

The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...

Loading...
Recent Stories

This site, like most other sites on the web, uses cookies. For more information, see our privacy policy. Got it
Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.