Turn Off the Digg Toolbar Forever

Written by Amit Agarwal on Apr 8, 2009

Diggbar is like a virtual toolbar that adds itself to all stories linked from Digg.com (see live example). Digg is also promoting Diggbar as a URL shortening service – just add digg.com at the beginning of any URL and it will create a small address perfect for sharing in email messages as in this example.

I have mixed feelings about the Digg Toolbar but first the good points.


Diggbar is not evil

Contrary to what you may think, Diggbar is not part of any evil SEO conspiracy designed to flow all Google PageRank to the main Digg website. Every web page shortened through digg.com includes a rel=canonical tag in the HTML header which is like a 301 redirect and therefore all link juice gets transferred to the original source even if other sites link to Digg’s short URL.

Second, all these shortened pages have the NOINDEX meta tag so search engines will skip them and that completely eliminates the possibility of Digg ranking higher that the originating source in search results.

Digg Toolbar Drawbacks

That said, there are a couple of things which I hate about the Digg Toolbar.

1. Diggbar renders the main page inside an IFRAME so even if I navigate to another page, the Digg Toolbar will still remain visible on top of that page and worst of all – the URL in the browser address bar won’t be updated.

2. The page loading time increases as browser will first download all Digg resources(style sheets, JavaScript files, etc) before rending the actual webpage. This will be more evident on a slow connection.

3. Diggbar may be acting as a spy as it can easily record my interactions with an external site – they are using the Quantcast tracking code for this purpose already.

4. If you are no fan of Digg, the toolbar adds no value and, in some cases, may even break the layout of some websites.

How to Disable Digg Toolbar

There are two ways in which you can disable the Digg Toolbar. Go to your settings page and select "Never Show Diggbar for external links".

The above preference is only available for people who are members of Digg. If you don’t have an account at Digg, open this page and hover your mouse between the "close" button and the feedback button on the Digg toolbar. Click the drop-down arrow and select "Always hide the toolbar".

Digg uses browser cookies to save your viewing preferences for the Digg Toolbar. That means if you hide the Diggbar in Google Chrome, it may still appear in Firefox or IE because browses don’t share cookies.

Get Your Digg Toolbar back

If you like to re-enabled the disabled Diggbar, simply clear your browser cache or delete the Digg specific cookies. Or, if you have a Digg account, change the default preferences from the settings page.

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