Why do people contribute? (who is dirtyfratboy?)

That’s the question I constantly find myself coming back to. Who are these people who spend hours a day contributing to things like DIGG and Wikipedia for no financial gain.

I’ve been seeing the user below on the home page of DIGG (the icon is memorable huh?), so I clicked through to their page. They’ve submitted 776 stories to digg over the past 278 days. That’s basically three stories every single day without a day off for almost a year.

It has to take 15 minutes–on average–to find and publish a decent story to DIGG. So, this person has spent 194 hours on the site in less than a year. If you worked seven hours a day doing this as a day job this would be six weeks of full-time work. So, this person is spending around eight full-time weeks a year.

Wow. That is just…. wow, so impressive.

…but why? Do they work for DIGG?

Here is a look at the top ten digg users by stories submitted and the number of hours they’ve spent working on the site over the past year or so. This is based on 15 minutes to find and submit a story. I think on average that is what it takes. You could argue ten minutes or 20 I guess, but even at five minutes per story you’re looking at a ton of time.

On thing I’m sure of is that some of these folks run their own websites, and as a result get value from publishing to DIGG.

  • someone

    Yeah that is really strange. I often wonder the same thing, although I have never taken the time to do the math. It’s probably the same weird and generous souls who spend their time writing open source software.