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Did You Digg It?
By: Mike Bush
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If there’s one site that really launched the PR world into social media, it was Digg, which recently sold for $500,000 to NY Incubator Betaworks.

If you came of age as a flack around the same time I did, there’s a pretty good chance that in addition to posting press releases on a wire service like PRNewswire or BusinessWire, you started to realize there was a whole new way to distribute news: It could be shared socially.

The fun part was that you probably had two types of clients: Those who didn’t get it at all, and those who wanted to understand, but still might not have gotten it.

The first type was never impressed when you said “Hey, we worked to get you to the front page of Digg.” In their minds, Digg was run by a kid who was leading a rag-tag bunch of Internet nerds. Never mind that by 2008, the site was attracting millions of viewers daily (this client could actually have his or her impression changed pretty quickly when you showed them the traffic spike to a site based on a high Digg rating).

The second type of client may be a convert from the first, or maybe someone who read about Digg in BusinessWeek and decided that they wanted to be a part of it, on the first page, every time. Despite your best efforts to convince them otherwise, they were convinced that offering a free thumb drive would be enough to get them on the front page and would generate all the traffic they could ever want.

It didn’t, and it wouldn’t.

(Of course, there’s the third type of client, which is much more prevalent today: the kind that both understands and expects social media and news sharing to be a piece of their SEO and PR campaigns).

In a recent interview with GigaOm, Kevin Rose, the founder of Digg said that he’s seen the new prototype, and that it has some cool functionalities. I hope he’s right.

Hey, if AOL can make a comeback, maybe Digg can too. And it’d be ideal if it was for more than reasons of nostalgia.

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About the Author
Mike Bush is a PR and Marketing freelancer with more than a dozen years of experience in the field. Find him on and connect Twitter @mikebush or at www.mikebush.nyc. 
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