The Truth About Digg Patriots
It should come as no surprise to anyone that since Digg added the Political News and Political Opinion categories to the site, the membership is decidedly liberal. The addition of these categories prior to the 2008 election completely changed the tone of Digg forever. No longer was Digg known as a tech site. The front page would soon be populated with story after story bashing Republican and Conservative politicians and submissions glorifying left-leaning politicians. Conservatives had no chance of being heard, much less getting Conservative submissions to the front page of Digg. Those submissions were systematically buried in the same fashion in which the Digg Patriots group is being accused. Comments made under submissions from right-leaning members were buried into oblivion. In very popular stories regarding Democrats, comments made by Conservatives were buried into double and even triple negative numbers.
Not only is the general membership of Digg overwhelming left-leaning, but the site administrators often make decisions that seem to favor liberal over conservatives. Again, that should come as no surprise as Digg founder Kevin Rose did little to hide his support for President Obama. Most users are certainly going to come down on one side of the aisle at some point. Our group did not exist to stifle all left-leaning content on Digg and accusing the group of censorship is hardly justified. A quick look at all the top political news and opinion stories over the last year and half proves how inaccurate that claim is. Looking through the first 10 pages of submissions that became popular under the Political News category over that last year, there is only 1 submission out of the 150 that has a conservative bias, which is the news story about Scott Brown winning his Senate race.
On any given day on Digg, left-based submissions made popular outnumber right-based submissions easily by a factor of 20:1. And look at the content of those popular left-leaning submissions. How many are attacks on Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Fox News, etc?
In addition, most conservative comments are met with replies that are nothing more than childish personal attacks. Though not all, most liberals commenting on Digg are more likely to label a conservative with one of their many catchy tags such as “freeper”, “birther”, “racist” or simply make vulgar or obscene insults. There is no debating or arguing with such behavior. How many of you reading this right now are guilty of making such comments or voting up those comments. How many times have we seen the Glenn Beck rape meme posted?
Did we vote down left-leaning stories or vote up conservative submissions? Yes. However, that vote up or down was still a personal choice of each individual user and done with only a single vote up or down. No one ever used any form of scripts or any other aid to promote or bury a story on Digg.
In fact, what we have been doing is hardly different than anyone else using any other form of communication to promote a submission or even attempt to bury it. Groups of liberal Digg users exist on Twitter or Twitter-clones, Facebook and many other social media sites that do the exact same thing. Anyone on Digg who ever asked anyone else to digg or bury a story at any time in the past is just as guilty or innocent as anyone in Digg patriots.
If you look at submissions of left-leaning Digg users it is a daily occurrence for the same story to be submitted ad nauseum. With hot stories, it’s not unusual to see the exact same story or slight variations submitted dozens of times in the same day. Even the story about Digg Patriots has been submitted no less than a dozen times in the last 24 hours, 3 alone are exact duplicates from DailyKos. Without a doubt, this is one of our biggest issues with liberal Digg submissions. No one was trying to censor actual news or even opinions, but we certainly targeted submissions that were known or obvious duplicates or pieces that we deemed were inaccurate or were from sources that had questionable credibility. We also have pointed out to Digg admins numerous sites that are regularly submitted seeking donations or who copy content from other sites.
I personally find it ironic that so many Democrat and liberal Digg users are so quick to judge and condemn this group, as these are typically the same people who are the first to go into fits of rage regarding due process. In addition, I also find it ironic that these same Digg users calling for our heads have yet to condemn the invasion of privacy, possibly criminal in nature used to access our personal and private emails, which is how 95% of this information was exchanged between Digg Patriot users. These are the same liberal-leaning Digg users who were frothing at the mouth in response to The passing of The Patriot Act under the Bush administration and who have had little criticism of the Obama for not only voting for the Patriot Act as a Senator, but continuing the policies under his presidency.
Most if not all Digg users have certainly been aware of the constant attacks made on various conservative/libertarian Digg users lately, namely Capt Carrot and ThePartyStar, both who were on the Digg Patriots member list. The attacks on ThePartyStar are the most vile and hateful of any I have witnessed on the internet. For nearly two months we have seen new accounts created where the user friends many of the same Digg users, most on the Digg Patriots list and then launches a series of personal, profane and sexual-assault based attacks on Digg user ThePartyStar. This has happened several dozen times in the last few weeks and only seems to have subsided now that Digg has closed new membership. Since it was mentioned in the article about our group that we were allegedly targeting these people who were creating these accounts and attacking ThePartyStar, a group we labeled as the NoBros, it seems odd that the author of this piece is essentially siding with those attackers. It leads me to suspect someone associated with the author is perhaps behind those attacks.
In regards to the continuing attacks on Digg user Capt Carrot (RJ Carter), this seems to be related to an ongoing issue he has dealt with personally for years in which he is attempting to uncover and confront child predators and pedophiles on the internet. This is apparently something that Mr. Carter was involved with long before his affiliation with our group and none of us had any dealing with the matter. Based only on what RJ has told us, the people he is confronting will stoop to the lowest levels and stop at nothing in their attempt to discredit him and paint him as the wrongdoer. It would not surprise me to find out that those attacking Mr. Carter also had a hand in illegally obtaining access to our personal information.
So who was behind the attack on the Digg Patriot group? The author of the piece on Alternet and also a duplicate submission on pubrecord.org is none other than Digg user Novenator who goes by the pen name OleOle Olson. Mr. Olson is a writer/contributor/owner of the site NewsJunkiePost.com. Mr. Olson chose to attack us and single us out as our members often confronted and debated with him. I doubt that anyone is shocked by this revelation as there is possibly no one on Digg who is more of a progressive advocate or radical. His submissions are almost always divisive, political opinion pieces. Apparently Mr. Olson took exception to us continually pointing out his hypocrisy on Digg as he often commented about reporting conservatives for “hijacking” submissions by editorializing the title or description, as he was either guilty of exactly the same thing or had a history of digging liberal or progressive articles in which the submitter had also done the same thing. In addition, as he had attacked various users who had submitted articles or sites that requested donations, we found that his site, newsjunkiepost was also guilty of the same thing that he claimed was a violation of Digg ToS policies.
We also believe Digg user Anamoly100 to have a hand in these attacks as the site she runs and regularly submits from, freakoutnation.com, is also guilty of these alleged Digg ToS violations, not to mention consistently submitting, digging and promoting known duplicates her site published in order to generate web traffic. It doesn’t take much to deduce that these people are not only writing and submitting pieces from their own site in order to promote their personal and political agendas, they are doing it for profit, another violation of Digg’s policies that we have continued to point out.
So as you see, the Digg Patriot group, in an effort to help Digg police their own policies, we are now being singled out and attacked because Mr. Olson may be financially taking a hit due to lost ad revenue on his site. This has less to do with censorship, than it does with his personal vendetta against Digg Patriots for constantly admonishing his less than ethical behavior. Novenator is guilty of exactly the same things he has accused the Digg Patriots of, which is organized digging and burying and we have the screenshot to prove it. I’m certain that the Digg administrators and many Digg users are also aware of his behavior which is why he is not being taken seriously. In last nights show in Social Blade, Digg user MrBabyMan mentioned that Novenator had approached him in the past to submit this hit piece, but he refused to do so due to the lack of credibility and believability of the submission. This obviously took courage and understanding on the part of MrBabyMan as the article published an alleged list in which he was mentioned as a Digg power user whose politics at times seemed to favor the Democrats based solely on his submissions made prior to the 2008 election. I would like to offer an apology to Andy (aka Mr abyMan) that he was involved in this in any way. I hope Andy understands that many of us on the Digg Patriots list are either mutual friends with him on Digg and/or regularly Digg and promote his submissions. Did I personally bury submissions from MrBabyMan that I didn’t agree with politically? Absolutely. That’s why Digg has a bury feature. I would expect him and any of those who disagreed with my politics to do the same with any of my submissions or comments, which I am certain happened frequently.
Is it considered to be “gaming Digg” to email a small group of friends and ask them to vote up or down a submission? As it has been pointed out many times since yesterday, is this not exaclty what Digg asked for when they did away with the shout feature? Is this not the very same thing that other uses do every single day on Twitter, Facebook and via other means? It seems more than anything, that Novenator and the others behind this attack are trampling our civil rights and attempting to deny us the right to assemble and the right to free speech because our views do not agree with his. If the group were assembled in a single room and discussed digging, burying and various user activities, would it still be a violation of Digg ToS. If it were done via phone, would that also be a Digg violation? If it’s done at a location that has nothing to do with Digg, why would Digg care or intervene? According to those on the Social Blade show last night, it is apparently common knowledge that other “bury brigades” exist and have existed. If Digg has the ability to investigate the Digg Patriot group for these alleged violations, there is little doubt that they can investigate others on Digg for the same, but as I and apparently many others agree, no one in the Digg Patriot group did anything wrong, except piss off a few very liberal, sensitive Digg users who are exacting their revenge. It’s really quite sad and pathetic that someone would go to such extreme lengths to attack this group due to political differences.
But from Kerrie: Novenator would NEVER call for anyone to bury ANYTHING, as this is a violation of digg’s TOU.
Hat tip to Kanzune at Something Awful for the photoshops.
That’s Molly Norris of Seattle. She was placed on an “execution hit list” by fanatical Islamist Anwar al-Awlaki. FBI recommended
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