DotNetKicks is a great source to stay on track with latest .NET related developments, tutorials, tips, etc. It is also a great way to promote your .NET related articles or products. Here's a "kicked" article by Ryan Lanciaux about how cool it is for a small blog to get "kicked".
This is all true but if we can learn from digg (of which DotNetKicks is a clone) this is not going to last forever. To understand why let's analyze the only 2 ways how your article can get kicked/digged/whatever:
- Someone sees your article in the "upcoming stories" section of DotNetKicks and kicks it
- Someone reads the article on your site and presses the "kick it" button (if you have one)
Now those of you who read the "upcoming stories" section of DotNetKicks please stand up. Anyone? I don't. And judging from the quantity of hits I got to my articles submitted to DotNetKicks but not kicked to the front page I can assume that not more than 50 people do. Lets not fight about this number cause the actual number is not that important. What's important that only a small percentage of DotNetKicks readers read the "upcoming stories" too.
So this leaves us with only one actual way of getting kicked -- through the link on your own site. While the threshold of becoming "popular" on DotNetKicks is low (6 kicks?) it's ok. You can expect that out of 50 visitors to your small site 10% would bother to kick your article. But as DNK becomes more popular this bar would go higher to filter not that interesting stories which would inevitably grow in quantity the more popular the DNK becomes. So let's say the bar is raised to 30 and (if we assume that 10% of your visitors would kick your article) you'll need to have something like 300 readers already to get kicked to the front page.
You can see this effect on digg. For example to get your story about some gadget digged to "popularity" you have to be Engadget or Gizmodo or at least your article should be linked from some popular site(s) (or many less popular ones) before being digged. Here's a good article on the same subject by DownloadSquad.
So let's enjoy the great DotNetKicks while we can and while noise ratio there is low. It's not going to last forever. At least I don't have that much faith in humanity.
Update: read the follow-up: More on "The DotNetKicks Effect"