Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Digg Users Revolt - Take over Homepage

Today is a very interesting day for social media. As reported on, a post came up yesterday on digg that contained a string of numbers and characters that cracked the security code on HD DVD's. After a cease and desist notification from the AACSLA (Advanced Access Content System Licensing Administrator) digg apparantly removed the posts and immediately suffered a backlash from their users. Several new posts were added, all of which made it to the homepage thanks to the user initiated voting system.

Digg Founder Kevin Rose posted this response last night:

Today was an insane day. And as the founder of Digg, I just wanted to post my thoughts…

In building and shaping the site I’ve always tried to stay as hands on as possible. We’ve always given site moderation (digging/burying) power to the community. Occasionally we step in to remove stories that violate our terms of use (eg. linking to pornography, illegal downloads, racial hate sites, etc.). So today was a difficult day for us. We had to decide whether to remove stories containing a single code based on a cease and desist declaration. We had to make a call, and in our desire to avoid a scenario where Digg would be interrupted or shut down, we decided to comply and remove the stories with the code.

But now, after seeing hundreds of stories and reading thousands of comments, you’ve made it clear. You’d rather see Digg go down fighting than bow down to a bigger company. We hear you, and effective immediately we won’t delete stories or comments containing the code and will deal with whatever the consequences might be.

If we lose, then what the hell, at least we died trying.

Digg on,


Digg was basically caught in a no-win situation. Remove the post and face extinction by having your users revolt and leave or face a potential lawsuit from an organization with very deep pockets. Win or lose you have to admire digg's stance.

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