Is this Digg’s last chapter?
Once valued at $200 million Digg sold for a whopping $500,000 to Betaworks. Digg provided one of the most inspiring startup's in history. The founder,Kevin Rose, had an idea for a website. He hired freelancers to build the first version of the site, paying each less than $15.00 an hour. Then the site went viral. Everyone wanted to check out the site. And a year and a half later Rose was on the cover of BusinessWeek, having made $60 million in the process.
Bloggers used to get bonuses based on how often they hit the front page of Digg. This "Digg Effect" was something to be both respected and feared. It was the place that could make or break a story. If you could get your story on Digg’s homepage, then you could sit back and watch the traffic roll in. At one point other websites were willing to pay the top Digg power users $1000.00 a month to migrate to their site.
With other social media sites starting to take the lead, like Reddit, Facebook, twitter, etc... And the many facelifts over the past few years, it seems that Digg was losing too many users. It seems that Digg’s other issue was that they started focusing more on their advertisers than their user base. Apparently, you cannot continue making money if you lose all of your users.
Betaworks said it is going to rebuild the site from scratch in the next six weeks. “We are a startup team with ambitious principles and we need to move quickly”. “The old Digg infrastructure was expensive and it afforded us little latitude to innovate and build at a fast clip. So four weeks ago, we set an a aggressive goal to move to a new infrastructure by August 1. We are starting with a fresh code base — it’s modern, it’s fast and it’s shiny and new". “With this launch, we’re taking the first step towards (re)making Digg the best place to find, read, and share the most interesting and talked about stories on the Internet — and we want your help.”
For those interested in helping out, you can take a short survey here. Questions range from, "Would you recommend the current Digg to a friend?", to "How do you get your news?".