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There Should Be A 'Digg Riot' Everyday
Hardcore issues censored daily but users raise hell over a trivial story

Infowars.net | May 2, 2007 
Steve Watson

Users of the popular social network news site Digg are "rioting" over a decision by the site's owners to censor a story and reportedly ban a user for posting the HD-DVD AACS Processing Key number, which would allow someone to crack the copy protection on an HD-DVD.

The story that revealed the code got over 15,000 diggs in one day but was pulled from the site overnight sparking some pointed articles discussing the censorship.

These legitimate and well thought out stories were then also ruthlessly deleted and their submitters unquestioningly banned. More stories were then submitted discussing Digg censorship. Those stories suffered the same fate.

When it quickly became obvious that the Digg staff had got themselves in too deep and were engaging in mass censorship of any article discussing either the original HD-DVD code story or the follow up articles on Digg censorship in general, a virtual 'riot' started.

An onslaught on submissions concerning the subject from an angry crowd within the Digg community has proven too much for the site's owners to handle. Earlier today the front four pages of Digg consisted entirely of stories displaying the code number or criticizing Digg for its actions. Click for enlargement.


Seemingly the censorship has also started to spread from Digg to Wikipedia which has started locking down pages related to HD DVD. It is already too late though as the code number has gone viral on other social network sites such as You Tube and Reddit.

The point to make here however is why does it take something as trivial as this for censorship to be noticed?

Digg, along with many other social networking sites censors everyday. Infowars and Prisonplanet stories regularly get hundreds, even thousands, of diggs but almost never appear on the front pages of Digg.com.

Our most hard hitting reports are usually instantly buried, sometimes only a matter of minutes after they have been submitted.

Last March a bug in Digg's spy tool gave one smart Digger the ability to peer into the inner workings of the community. David LeMieux found a way to highlight which users were burying stories on Digg, and why.

A cursory search through David LeMieux' hacked list of Digg buries reveals that many stories relating to 9/11 have been buried by the same group.

Reports have regularly resurfaced that suggest Digg may be suffering abuse at the hands of a group of users that are burying Digg stories they find ideologically unappealing.

Rumours have been flying around the internet for months that these so called "bury brigades" could be more than just a group of geeky self appointed censors and that it may actually be Digg themselves, or even agencies of the government, that are censoring stories and preventing the information from going viral on the net.

Digg's bury system has been accused of being totally undemocratic because it allows a few users to prevent the many from reading articles and making their own mind up on the material.

This system is clearly flawed, many Infowars and Prisonplanet reports have gone on to receive thousands of diggs and hundreds of comments AFTER they have been buried. All this has been of little use because once a story is buried it cannot be brought back and thus cannot hit the front page of digg.com and be seen by millions of readers who do not normally visit Prisonplanet and Infowars.

The same is true of many other alternative news sites.

The DVD Digg 'riot' proves that users CAN take over and successfully overcome censorship of information should there be enough of them. The sad thing is that more people consider being able to copy Meet The Fockers more important than exposing how a criminal US government was complicit in the most deadly attack upon the country in history.

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