User Filtered Content (UFC) is what Web 2.0 is about… and Digg is a UFC site


At the Crunchy awards last week Digg was named best User Generated Content (UGC) site. As many people pointed out since then, Digg is in fact not a user generated content site, since the people don’t submit content to the site, but links to other sites.

Allen Stern suggests that Digg is a UGC aggregator. Josh Catone thinks that UGC is perfectly accurate for Digg.

Back in 2006 I posted the notes to my speech at the Influence conference on Web 2.0 and User Filtered Content, pointing out that Web 2.0 is largely about users collectively filtering content after they have generated it. Earlier in the year the content section of our Future of Media Strategic Framework showed how both media and users create and filter content. Creating and filtering content are different activities.


I think it’s well time that User Filtered Content comes into its own as a term, and isn’t confused with User Generated Content.

6 replies
  1. Ross Dawson
    Ross Dawson says:

    Interesting point Nic. If these are Digg’s moderators whose activities are not transparent then it’s not UFC, which is about mechanisms to enable all participants to collectively filter. This doesn’t have to be entirely democratic in the sense of one vote per user – on Slashdot some people through their contribution have more sway.
    Of course there’s nothing sacrosanct about UFC – there’s nothing wrong with filtering in other ways if it gives useful outcomes. But if you’re pretending it’s pure UFC and it’s not, that’s a different matter…

  2. Lauren Cooney
    Lauren Cooney says:

    Hi Ross,
    So if I self-select a widget or series of widgets to use on my blog, would that be a form of “user filtered content” or is it based on the audience selection rather than the individual user?

  3. Ross Dawson
    Ross Dawson says:

    Hi Lauren, it’s aggregated rather than individual filtering: collective behaviors allow us to find what’s interesting or useful.
    My definition of Web 2.0 is: “Distributed technologies built to integrate, that collectively transform mass participation into valuable emergent outcomes.” – the key is in the mechanisms that transform that mass participation into something useful (such as user filtered content).
    For more see our Web 2.0 framework:

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