This was kind of a sad headline to read, although I guess it doesn’t really surprise me because I honestly stopped using Digg a long time ago myself. I remember when Kevin Rose first founded it back in 2004 and it was pretty much the first “social network” of its kind. Both TWiT and Revision3 wouldn’t be started until the following year, so it was pretty much my go-to source for links, both tech and otherwise for a good couple of years.
Unfortunately, I think they made some bad decisions along the way that alienated their core user base while trying to branch out into other areas, and there was definitely plenty of controversy with competitors trying to buy up key contributors and whatnot.
I kinda had a feeling that it was a bad sign for both Digg and Revision3 when Kevin started moving on to other projects (Rev3 just got bought by Discovery not long ago). I guess it’s just kind of crazy because as one of the articles will note, at one point Digg was rumored to be in acquisition talks with Google for $200 million and even years before that, Kevin was on the cover of Business Week with a $60 million headline…
- (Tech Crunch) Digg Sold to LinkedIn AND The Washington Post And Betaworks
- (Wall Street Journal) Once a Social Media Star, Digg Sells for $500,000
- (Digg.com) Digg and Betaworks
In Digg’s defense, it should definitely be noted that the company as a whole is rumored to have sold for $16 million total – $12 million from the Washington Post for the staff, about $4 million from LinkedIn for various patents, and then the remaining site, infrastructure, and traffic going to Betaworks for $500,000 … a lot of people are reporting that the whole company sold for $500k, which is just sad and depressing!
Granted, $16 million is still a far cry from $200 million, but I guess sometimes that’s the way the tech bubble crumbles… 🙁