Spam me once, shame on you. Spam me twice and it’s time to get better moderators.
For the second time in three days, Digg has become the pitiful victim of a major spam attack on their Top News section. This isn’t the case of a complex algorithm breach or a hidden exploit being passed around the darkest corners of the Internet. The same spam sites that attacked early in the morning on September 26th hit again before midnight on September 28th.
The 4 stories in question were submitted at 10:30 pm Pacific. All four were promoted utilizing a gaping hole of an exploit inherent to V4 (which we will not detail here so as to not give other spammers “The Roadmap to Success on Digg”). The first one was promoted to the front page a little over an hour later with each subsequent post hitting the front page in successive 10-minute intervals.
One of the most controversial changes made when Digg moved to V4 was the removal of the “Bury” feature. The bury button in V3 was a defense mechanism that prevented spam stories from being promoted. Those that slipped through the cracks were normally buried off within minutes by the Digg community.
As of the time of this post, the first spam story was still on the front page over an hour after it was promoted.
Controversy surrounded the bury button as alleged “bury brigades” would abuse it and remove quality content from distribution.
Co-founder and former CEO Kevin Rose has mentioned on multiple occasions that there are moderators employed by Digg to prevent these types of attacks from happening. Despite the removal of the bury button, a “report” button is available on every story to theoretically alert the moderators of content that abuses TOS. There is also a “hide” button that removes the story from view and acts in similar ways to the old bury button.
Neither seem to be very effective.