Ask DN: Why is it so easy to reach the #1 spot?

over 6 years ago from , Design Manager at Envoy

As I post this, there's a landing page with no substance, no credibility (as far as I can tell), and no value prop, offering a free iPad at the #1 spot on DN. It literally just showed up a minute ago. No upvotes.

This community is in serious need of a dedicated news aggregator. @SachaGreif is doing a great job with http://sidebar.io, and LayerVault has created a great counterpart to Hacker News. I frequent all of these sites, and I'm a happy dude. I'm troubled by this spam I just saw on DN, and I want to bring attention to it before the site loses credibility.

Reasons why Hacker News is successful: - Created by Y Combinator, a highly reputable and well-respected accelerator in Silicon Valley. - Only the highest caliber and most relevant content can make it to the front page. Nothing else even gets close. - Posters/Commenters are rewarded for sharing high quality content and comments by having more influence over the community – notably without mod permissions. - YC alums and friends get zero preferential treatment, except for job listings. There's no bias from the mods. - Voting rings do not work. Even good content will be buried if it cheats it's way onto the FP. - Most importantly: Visitors know they're only seeing what's interesting, relevant, and cool. They trust HN to bring them breaking news.

Designer News is still tiny. So far, it's been a great experiment and I'm glad to be a part of it. Seeing that spam post, though, really damaged the site's credibility for me. DN looks a lot like HN visually, so I innately expected it to work the same way. It definitely doesn't, so I'm left wondering why it looks the same but acts differently. All I care about is the integrity of the content... anything else is secondary.

This is not a flame post. It's just my observation.


  • Ryan LeFevreRyan LeFevre, over 6 years ago

    There's still a lot of room left to tweak the rating algorithm. I agree that new stories are making the frontpage way too easily. We'll keep working on improving this.

    1 point
    • Wells Riley, over 6 years ago

      Nice, thanks for the quick response.

      What's the reasoning behind letting new posts reach the FP? I know HN's FP algorithm is a function of # upvotes, time since being posted, and voter karma... that doesn't really work within this system though.

      0 points
  • Allan GrinshteinAllan Grinshtein, over 6 years ago

    I've sunk the Free iPad post. We'll be removing the user. It happens.

    We overvalue freshness. That's not a huge deal right now because it's invite only, but there's still plenty of room to tweak. Sometimes bad eggs make it through.

    1 point
  • Andrew LiebchenAndrew Liebchen, over 6 years ago

    There's another free iPad link on the homepage. Same page, reposted? Or different free iPad site?

    0 points