by Paula Neal Mooney
I feel a little like Dustin Hoffman's character in All the President's Men, a book-turned-movie about two Washington Post reporters whose investigative journalism exposed what later turned into the Watergate scandal that forced President Nixon's resignation.
It all started innocently enough, with the reporters covering what was initially thought to be a robbery at the Democratic Party National headquarters. We all know how that ended...if only some sleuth would get to the bottom of that Chappaquiddick incident...
Anyway...my plight started just as innocently a couple of month ago, when I tried to submit a post to Digg.com and got an error message. Upon Googling the error message, I turned up not only other legitimate users who've also been banned by Digg, but plenty of accusations that Digg -- who prides itself on allowing average citizens to control their front page news -- and other organizations have paid people to Digg certain stories to the front page.
So, I did what bloggers do, I blogged about it. See I Was Banned from Digg.com for the dirty details. In that post, I told people to quickly Digg my Orble blog post about being banned. Soon thereafter, that Orble URL was banned from Digg too. Uh oh...I must've pissed off the nerdtrons, I thought. Again, I did what any techie would do and figured out ways to Digg my pieces from other locations.
I pretty much forgot about the issue till I saw my Digg-banning plight listed in the post called And the List of Domains Ditched by Digg Keeps Growing. Today I decided to write a news report about it, and digging around the blogosphere turned up some pretty unfavorable stuff about Digg.com, ironically, a site that I love to troll for upcoming interesting stories. Here's just a sampling of what Digg.com detractors have found about banning and Digg payola:
* The Hypocrisy of Digg and Spam
* How to Be a Dirty Digger
* Digg is Killing Itself with Domain Banning
* Legalizing the Underground Digg Economy
* Open Letter to Kevin Rose
* Top Digg Users Taking PR Payola?
* Digg Corrupted: Editor's Playground, not User-Driven Website
It's funny that my news report about the melee called Digg Bans Legitimate URLs and Draws Fire from the Blogosphere has already been reported by the Digg Army as possibly containing inaccurate content. It also trips me out that some Digg commenters summarily dismiss all the banned URLs as "containing no content" before they've had time to absorb any of them or write witty comebacks like "that blog sucks anyway" and such.
But I am hoping and praying the best for Kevin Rose and Digg.com and Revision 3. If Digg.com returns to its original purpose of letting the public in general decide which stories should be popular -- without techie tricks and under-the-table payments -- it will be around for years and years to come. After all, Digg.com developers obviously have the techie know-how to make this happen. They just need to implement it honestly and forthrightly...
Bookmark http://www.paulamooney.blogspot.com/ to see where this Digg banning story ends..