Digg Uproar: Zaibatsu and the Digg Revolt

The latest news on the Digg Uproar front comes from an article found in the Pakistan Times called “Zaibatsu should be reinstated on Digg“. In the article Rubab mentions ‘The Digg Revolt‘, which is a term I’ve heard on a number of occasions since April or May of 2008.

It is obvious to me that the people at Digg are pretty much oblivious to what is going on and it shows in the statements made by those in employment of Digg. One of the places it is apparent is in the reply Jay Adelson’s comment:

Let’s be realistic about what happened yesterday,” Adelson says. “It wasn’t a revolt. To me, a revolt is when a statistically significant group of people cause a disruption. These guys are significant to me personally, but this wasn’t a revolt. I hope that the next time a small group of users voice their concerns, it’s not represented as a ‘mass movement’ or a ‘revolt.’”

I am perfectly sure that some adviser of Ole King George gave a similar comment back in early 1775 about the events happening in the colonies. LoL I agree, Jay, let’s be realistic. What happened was a revolt, whether that is what you would call it or not, and Digg has been having revolts since April or May of 2008 or before. It may not be a huge revolt, nor may it be a real danger to Digg… but a revolt it is never-the-less.

Let’s face it, Digg will most likely survive just about any ‘revolt’ that happens by it’s members, but ask yourself this very important question:

“What condition will it be in if Digg continues to piss off it’s members who do most of the activity on the site?”

Are those people who have been on Digg for 1 to 4 years that have 0 to 500 Diggs going to be the salvation of the site?

Are those who think that it’s “social” to bury any item they don’t like or understand going to be the ones who replace the ex-members who left?

In no way do I promote the coddling of rule breakers or TOS Violators, neither do I preach treating a select group of members better than the average user. I do promote, however, being fair and appearing just to the members of the site… and doing so in a timely manner.

Another thing to think about, Jay, what will happen if you lose your top users? The answer is “New people will replace them – eventually. Who is to say the new ‘bosses’ will be any better than the old ‘bosses’? The fact is that the some of the new guys and gals taking the place of the old will not only do the same things, and worse, but many will be smarter about it because they have learned from the mistakes of the old. On the other hand if you drive your good members away then you may end up with just another troll haven on your hands, it happened to other sites – so why can’t it happen on Digg too?

In the article “Top Digg User Zaibatsu Banned – Reactions from Both Zaibatsu and Digg Management” by Richard MacManus, there is a section of the post stating the Digg Response as:

We sought a response from Digg on the banning, since Zaibatsu was a high ranking user who had seemingly put in a lot of effort and work into the community.

Digg’s Sr. Director of Marketing & Communications, Beth Murphy, responded that “this user has been banned for multiple violations of the Digg Terms of Use over period of time and not just a single incidence.”

So Digg’s position is clearly that Zaibatsu has a history of TOS violations, not just the latest one.

The article also states:

“We don’t know the previous violations, and Digg wouldn’t discuss details because they told us they’re “unable to comment on the specifics of this or any case given that we try to protect the privacy of our users“.”

The comments made by Digg are unsettling, it almost appears that Digg is telling the world that they knew certain users violated their TOS freely for months or years… and Digg did nothing about it. In the meantime Digg has punished the little guy, the average digger who may or may not have been guilty of what Digg claimed.

Digg may not have the right to tell the general public about Zaibatsu’s record in exact detail, but they certainly have the obligation to inform Zaibatsu of any violations he has made. It may have been a case where the violation was unintentional and a word of caution was enough to fix the problem, but regardless a man accused has the right to know he is being accused.

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