The nerds cried foul and Digg acquiesced. Digg’s founder—and deity to many—Kevin Rose just posted an explanation for all the shenanigans that happened yesterday regarding HD DVD encryption key stories being pulled. The short of it, Digg has a policy of removing stories from the front page that it deems could get it into legal trouble—porno, piracy, and here, encryption keys. But since so many users were virtual rioting, Rose caved in.
Now digg the story.
This is fairly significant for a number of reasons. One, I’d like to see the MPAA or Earth Police or whomever try to take down the many sites that now link to the code. Two, it shows the power of user-generated content: how much power do you, Web 2.0 proprietors, really have over what your users create? Take away that power and the users threaten to leave, which is what happened to Rose’s Digg. Too much power and you threaten your own survival from a legal standpoint.
I, for one, found the self-righteous attitude of many of the Digg users to be a little silly, as if it’s their natural right to be able to post whatever they want on the site. Remember, if Rose gets sued, he winds up in court, not you guys.
But never mind, go forth and spread the offending line of hex as you see fit.