Search Engine Journal recently wrote an article quoting pieces of a debate that's sprung up about digg (and more generically, the social bookmarking sites) being included in google's index.
Here are the arguments:
William Burn:My belief is that this is not enough to warrant a listing in Google. Since at its most basic sense Digg only offers a link to the actual story, then that story should occupy that position within Google, not the Digg link. I believe content publishers actually lose the chance to see that visitor because the person has to click twice and even understand that they must do that. And I am talking about mainstream non-diggers now, not the group who already understands what Digg is for.
Personally, I am a bit conflicted on this issue. Digg obviously has the ability to provide extra search engine exposure for content. If said content is on a site that doesn't rank well in the SE's then the Digg listing can help guide traffic to the content.Digg.com is acting as a gateway to the great content which would (usually) have been lost in Google’s monolithic index, never to be found or stumbled upon by searchers. Additionally, as a counter to his “the person has to click twice and even understand that they must do that” statement, the Digg.com interface is very easy to use, it’s almost an exact clone of a Google result (a big blue link/title with description underneath) so the user will already be familiar with it, as a result the user would not be confused by it and will find their way to the content they were looking for; that’s if the content still appeals to them after reading the accompanying description.
However, as Allen said, Digg is just listing a sentence or two of the content. That's not nearly enough and really that listing shouldn't come before the actual content that Digg is pointing to. So, IMO google and the other SE's should figure out a way to rank the original content before Digg's listing, perhaps with the Digg listing (and the subsequent discussion on the topic) as a sub-listing. This could be done for any and all of the major social bookmarking sites that link to that specific story.
What do you think?