Two of the most popular social news websites, Reddit and Digg provide users with an aggregated collection of news stories, pictures and links from around the Web. Reddit's current model utilizes content found -- or created -- by the site's users, whereas the current version of Digg features a front page curated by a dedicated editorial team. While there are dozens of competitors in the field filling various niches, some of the more popular alternatives include Slashdot, StumbleUpon, Delicious and NewsTrust, as well as social network sites such as Facebook, Google+ and Twitter.
One of the original social news sites, Slashdot features user-submitted news stories with a focus on computing and technology. Similar to Reddit, Slashdot is peer-moderated, with both linked articles and user comments given scores to rate their popularity and value. Unlike Reddit, however, Slashdot's moderation is performed by a rotating jury of members, rather than the whole of the site's population.
Unlike most other social news networks, StumbleUpon lacks a regular front page full of content. Instead, users are presented with individual websites. Users then vote on whether or not they liked the site, allowing the system to better learn individual tastes and tailor the results accordingly. Due to this learning process, StumbleUpon requires users to create an account even to view content, unlike either Digg or Reddit.
Primarily serving as an online bookmark list, Delicious uses members' favorite websites to create a list of popular content that other users can peruse. Delicious members can identify their bookmarks with multiple tags, which the system then uses to categorize the entries, allowing visitors to find websites that interest them.
NewsTrust focuses on collecting high-quality journalism aggregated from mainstream and independent news sources. Users can submit and comment on news stories, as well as rate and review existing stories for clarity and accuracy. Unlike many other sites, NewsTrust ranks stories not just on their popularity, but on quality.
While different in function from social news sites, networks including Facebook and Twitter have increasingly cut into the audience of sites like Digg. These social networks present members with content posted by users they choose to follow, allowing for more personalization, but do not feature any sort of moderation or ranking systems.
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