Digg has just announced that it’s going to begin rolling out Digg Ads, the site’s innovative and experimental advertising product that invites users to vote on which ads they like best, over the next week. Digg first announced the new advertising product in June, and they were briefly spotted in the wild in July, though Digg claimed at the time that the ads were limited to an internal test. Digg plans to roll the product out gradually over the next few days to a small subset of users, with plans for a larger deployment over several months.
Here’s how it works: the more upvotes an ad gets, the less advertisers have to pay, giving them an incentive to produce content that will appeal to the Digg userbase. At this point it’s too early to tell how the ads will fare (there’s a chance Digg users will just launch a bury brigade whenever they see one), but if the screenshot below is any indication they stand a fair chance at being a hit — I’m sure plenty of Digg users would jump at the chance to get a cheap Three Keyboard Cat Moon shirt, and there are plenty of other memes that sites like Threadless could capitalize on. Likewise, I’d imagine electronics companies could see good traffic by promoting discounted video games and equipment.