More Traffic, Less Noise: 15 Social News Websites You Must Know
Social news websites are popular in the whole world, as they are an effective and time-saving way to drive more traffic to your own website, while at the same time keeping you up to date with current news on topics you are interested in. The principle is quite simple. A social news website lets readers write short articles and link them to the source – for example your own blog article. In that way, even a beginner in blogging can secure himself more user traffic to his website. The social news site works as a catalyst, sparking a flame. The site offers the information seeker a simple, minimalistic design and a crowd based prioritization in order to not let any important news pass unnoticed. Some focus on a niche. To find the suitable social news site to fit your needs and topics is not always easy, however. This is why we compiled all of the useful offers into the following list.
Reddit is available in more languages than just English. However, even the localized versions see a large number of English posts. In general you can find a large variety of topics here. However, the slogan of Reddit doesn’t fit anymore these days: “The Front Page of the Internet”
Link to page: Reddit EN
Newsvine is one of those big global players. Even though the site is in English only, it offers a large variety of topics.
Link to page: Newsvine.com
Digg is well designed and offers a variety of topics for English speaking readers.
Link to page: Digg.com
Delicious was extremely popular at its time. Literally everyone saved their links there, because this is what Delicious is about. The service allows you to sort your links by keywords and save them, with the option to either make them public or save them only visible to you. In my opinion, this concept is outdated and has been improved by Pocket and others for quite a while. In all honesty, Delicious isn’t even a "real" social news website at all. But it sure does have its fans, even nowadays.
Link to page: Delicious.com
DesignFloat is all about design – graphic design, web design, corporate identity, photography and tutorials. Anyone with good English skills and working in the design industry should take a look at DesignFloat.
Link to page: DesignFloat.com
The English service MetaFilter sees itself as a community weblog, which allows its users to link and discuss content. The service does not seem to be confined to specific topics.
Link to page: MetaFilter.com
Slashdot.org can pride itself with much traffic and is about technology related topics. Anyone who writes about technology in English should get some use out of this.
Link to page: Slashdot.org
8. Free Software Daily
Free Software Daily is all about open source and related topics.
Link to page: FreeSoftwareDaily
Web design, web development and programming are the topics of the English social news community Dzone.
Link to page: Dzone.com
BlogEngage is more of a general social news website for bloggers in English speaking countries. A very broad range of topics is being discussed here, tending to general interest.
Link to page: BlogEngage
LinkedIn is of course no classic social news website, but it does have some functions which are similar. LinkedIn allows users to link articles important to them and decide, if they should be publicly visible or not. This is why LinkedIn belongs in this article, at least from my point of view. Anyone, who wants to have news without the social aspect should try out LinkedIn Pulse.
Link to page: LinkedIn.com
Pinterest is quite big in sharing image content. User activity is incredibly high. To me, Pinterest defines the look and feel of a modern social news website. Considering the design has been copied a hundred times already, people seem to be able to relate to that.
Link to page: Pinterest
13. Hacker News
In a list like this, good old Hacker News (HN) shouldn’t be left out. Powered by the incubator Y Combinator, Hacker News is possibly the fastest social news site on the internet. One cannot get informed on topics related to technology anywhere faster than here. A simple upvoting system enables a crowd directed news ranking on the front page. Everything else is sorted chronologically.
Link to page: news.ycombinator.com
14. Designer News
Designer News (DN), created by the makers of version control system Layervault, is sort of the Hacker News for designers. Despite the fact that Designer News is way prettier than Hacker News, the platforms are functionally identical. In comparison to HN however, you will have to register at DN before you will be able to upvote threads.
Link to page news.layervault.com
15. Product Hunt
Product Hunt is not really a website for news in the traditional sense, but it is still quite interesting for designers and developers. New products are being presented in much the same way they are on Hacker News and Designer News. The site works exactly like a social news website. Anyone who wants to be kept up to date on new products, such as web services and apps, should integrate Product Hunt into their daily reading list.
Link to page: Producthunt.com
Famous Last Words
This list was supposed to be very extensive. However, during my research I found that many social news websites had already given up and about 70% of those sites that still existed a few years ago, are gone. Under the domains of their former glory you’ll now only find simple weblogs or redirections to other homepages. Some of the services on this list have been added by my colleague Dieter Petereit. Did we miss out on any important specimen?