"BigNews": Ask's Digg Project Revealed (IACI)

Here’s the Ask.com/Digg collaboration we’d heard about earlier this week, but it may be less than we’d advertised: “BigNews” is actually more of an attempt to create a new spin on Techmeme/Google News than a ripoff of Digg’s social news site. The special sauce here is a “BigFactor” algorithm that ranks a story by freshness, “impact”, number of links, etc. But unlike Digg, the service doesn’t allow users votes to stories up or down, at least not directly.

So what’s Digg’s involvement in the project? We don’t know, but it may be small: Our original tipster described the project as a partnership between IAC’s search engine and the social news network, but the site’s FAQ only makes one reference to Digg: “Be the First to “Digg” a story using our unique Digg module that identifies the most interesting stories with no “Digg” counts yet.” A note from Ask.com PR says also notes that Digg ratings factor into the site’s algorithm.

Updated: Sharp-eyed reader Owen notes that at least one of Digg’s contributions is visible for readers who scroll down to the bottom of the BigNews homepage.

See Also: Tipster: Digg/Ask Project Launching “Very Soon”

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