Digg paths to profitability and social networking

Digg paths to profitability and social networking

Summary: Speaking at the Building Blocks conference in San Jose today, Digg founder and chief architect Kevin Rose described his site as a "crazy madhouse of news flying around, 100 percent user powered." The Digg madhouse isn't yet a crazy quilt of ads aimed at increasing revenue, he noted when asked about getting to profitability.

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TOPICS: Browser
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rose.jpgSpeaking at the Building Blocks conference in San Jose today, Digg founder and chief architect Kevin Rose described his site as a "crazy madhouse of news flying around, 100 percent user powered." The Digg madhouse isn't yet a crazy quilt of ads aimed at increasing revenue, he noted when asked about getting to profitability.

"We could slap on lots of ads, and we could be profitable tomorrow," Rose said.  He added that Digg is going to taking its time, guarding the user experience, keeping it fresh and light. Rose singled out new social content competitor Netscape as existing at the opposite end of the advertising user experience spectrum. "We have a path to profitability," Rose explained, without going into specifics. Digg received funding last year of about $3 million from the Omidyar Network, Netscape co-founder Marc Andreessen, Greylock partners and others. Like many other companies hatched in the Web 2.0 era, getting scale in users and engagement, not revenue, is the first order of business.

Lately Netscape headman Jason Calacanis has been trying to poach some of the top Digg submitters for his Digg-like site, which could introduce new costs for sites that rely on users to generate or power the content production.

Steve Gillmor asked Rose whether the page view model makes Digg vulnerable as a business in light of the RSS/syndication movement, allowing users to have the content they want delivered to them where they want it. Rose responded that he isn't concerned at this point. "Digg is a platform for users to share information, to see what friends are Digging and get recommendations," he said. It's also a platform for conversations, as many readers comment on stories, driving up the page counts. 

Rose also said that Digg plans to mine user behavior data, so that the news service can recommend stories and connect people with similar interests. "Digg isn't about just helping users Digg," Rose said. "We must give something back to the user. We want to make extremely accurate suggestions for meeting new friends and discovering stories."

Topic: Browser

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  • Hypocrites

    Wasn't it Netscape that cried foul with Microsoft IE? Isn't it a little hyprocritical for Netscape to try and poach and bribe users away from Digg?

    Doug
    http://www.douglaskarr.com
    Douglas Karr
  • Too young to remember 1998?

    "Like many other companies hatched in the Web 2.0 era, getting scale in users and engagement, not revenue, is the first order of business."

    Obviously, Kevin Rose, his colleagues, his VCs, and their ilk have extremely short term memories, incalble of remember 1998. I wish them the best of luck. Then again, look at his investors... Mark Andreseen. He got out of Netscape before he got to learn any painful lessons.

    The worst part is this: who is the real idiot? Me working an honest job for an honest day's pay, or them making millions/billions by ripping off stupid investors who are blinded by their own greed into beleiving this nonsense anways?

    J.Ja
    Justin James
  • Digg.com is not that important

    sorry to burst the bubble, but, digg like slashdot are not that important. there are so many copycats out there such as reddit.com and now netscape.

    Digg is the myspace of news sites for now. I read the business week article about rose, they value the entire site at 200 million bucks but who will pay for it?

    I find the whole Web 2.0 sham quite humorous. what a crock to re-invent something that existed years ago.
    joelphil
  • Digg.com is an abomination

    'nuff said.
    jsaltz