The Libertarian Diggers group has returned! After the original group owner took it offline, Johnson Rice decided to start it up again over at Google Groups. It’s a group devoted to promoting Libertarian articles and news stories (like those here on HoT) at the uber-popular Digg.com. If you were involved with the old group, get onboard this one now at.
If you want to know more about Digg, and why the original group owner took down the first list, Johnson elaborates about what happened, and what will be different about this new group:
Cerberus has Many Heads
by Johnson Rice
I want to address something that has happened in the world of the particularly Internet savvy Libertarian recently.
In a fairly recent article written by Stephen Carson, over at LewRockwell.com, he addressed and explained the benefits of Libertarian involvement in the rapidly growing community that is Digg.com . If you are not already aware of what Digg is all about, I recommend that you read this article to gain a better understanding of what I am going to discuss.
Aside from the inclusion of “Digg This” links at LewRockwell.com, Stephen had also begun an organized effort to promote articles to the front page of Digg, which is viewed by millions. In order to better facilitate this, he created a free mailing list for Libertarian Diggers. It was a successful plan, and it was working well. Many stories were making the front page of Digg and replacing what used to be a somewhat collectivist ideological bent that Digg had been suffering from. It was clear that Digg users were beginning to receive a free market education on Liberty. Then some people, or at least ONE person, decided to complain.
Stephen decided to shut down the Libertarian Diggers group because of this criticism crying that the Libertarian Diggers were “hurting” Digg. That they were somehow harming the website. Apparently he seriously took to heart some criticism linked to from the “Digg for Life” blog written by someone known as Big Dave Diode.
I did a quick search and found that Big Dave Diode was the one and only person complaining on the libertarian diggers list. I am certain that there could easily be others who would take the viewpoint that those who would collude to Digg articles in tandem are somehow engaged in a nefarious plot to spam to, and to ruin Digg. However, it seems to me to be obvious that there are many more though, that are like myself, and understand and trust that the systems of Digg are in fact working exactly the way they were intended. The evidence of this is obvious when you consider that Dave Diode’s article supposedly ‘exposing’ the Libertarian Diggers only received 87 Diggs at the time of my writing this article, and had been on Digg for 9 days and counting, and yet several of the articles submitted by the Libertarians had in excess of 600 Diggs in under 3 days.
( Stephen might have also benefited from a simple browsing of Dave’s Digg user profile, which reveals that he has a penchant for primarily digging anti-bush articles and making comments about how people have been brainwashed by Republicans. He has Dugg articles about Al Gore and Johns Edwards, and has even been attacking people for simply using the words “Islamic Extremist” together in a sentence. Dave even has Digg of a Saturday Night Live Sketch featuring a scenario of what life might be like if Al Gore was president. I can only speculate about his political affiliations but it would not surprise me if he was simply anti-conservative. ) While I respect Dave’s concerns about Libertarians being engaged in spam, just a small amount of investigation makes be believe this was never really his true concern.
Just as another example, from the ‘About’ Section on Digg.com :
“Digg is a user driven social content website. OK, so what the heck does that mean? Well, everything on Digg is submitted by the Digg user community (that would be you). After you submit content, other Digg users read your submission and Digg what they like best. If your story rocks and receives enough Diggs, it is promoted to the front page for the millions of digg visitors to see.
What can you do as a Digg user? Lots. Every Digg user can Digg (help promote), bury (help remove spam), and comment on stories… you can even Digg and bury comments you like or dislike. Digg also allows you to track your friends’ activity throughout the site “” want to share a video or news story with a friend? Digg it!”
In light of the recent, and hasty shutdown of the LibertarianDiggers yahoo group, I felt that such a service should not disappear. There is obviously a market for this, and I am not afraid of criticism because I believe in what we are doing. Most Digg users are not against seeing messages of freedom. Anyone that complains that we are ruining Digg is simply wrong, because Digg has systems in place for how it is meant to be used. Stories can be Dugg down, users can be banned, and that is entirely user driven. Any use of the website is fair play, and if the creators of Digg want to change that, by imposing more dictatorial rules, they will. For now, it appears that Kevin Rose and his team have been increasing the level of social interaction within the site, not creating more controls, borders, and boundaries.
I also question whether the people who are in opposition to a group such as the Libertarian Diggers (or now the Free Market Diggers) would be opposed to something like a list of TechTV viewing diggers, or Video Game playing Diggers, or even Liberal Diggers. If this powerful avenue of educating the public exists, we should use it until we are stopped.
If you truly believe in something, if you truly want people to be free, and you REALLY want to educate others as to what that means… you do not stop simply because you received a little criticism.
It was obvious that the LibertarianDiggers group WAS working, and not by our will alone. The fact that some of the stories hitting the front page were receiving 600-900 Diggs is highly indicative when you consider the fact that no where near that many people had joined the LibertarianDiggers e-mail list. It only had around 100 people.
I believe that the list was a good service, and that there are still people who believe in the concept of spreading a message of freedom with whatever tools they are presented. Digg is currently an effective tool for putting the ideas of Liberty into the hands of many people who are intelligent and may likely already be predisposed to agreeing with the ideals of liberty. Head over totoday and help us spread a message of Freedom to some very eager minds.
Those who oppose seeing messages of freedom can use Digg as it was intended… or be damned.
Johnson Rice is a co host on the nationally syndicated Libertarian talk show Free Talk Live. Johnson came to liberty naturally as a child. His primary influences came from sneaking off to listen to youth inappropriate dark blue comedy, which instilled a fascination into what is considered socially taboo. This fascination evolved into studying the societal views and controls being placed upon a generation of people labeled hackers and crackers, and embracing a digital lifestyle, now exposed to new means of unprecedented access to information. You can see what Johnson has been digging.