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April 11, 2009

Stop Backstabbing Our Colleagues: The Diggbar Debate

Last week Digg.com released a toolbar.  When you visit a site from Digg.com, the site will now have a Digg toolbar at the top and the URL shortened to a Digg url.  John Gruber from Daringfireball.net wrote a post about how this is 'bullshit'.  He claims that the frameset they use to add the toolbar is somehow inherently wrong. This touched a nerve and the blogosphere set to work vilifying Digg.  (Note: Daringfireball.net was only on the front page of Digg 2 times last year.  The fact that Gruber wrote code to disable the DiggBar from his blog is grandstanding.  It also doesn't appear that the DiggBar has a negative effect on anything)

In response, Ted Dziuba wrote a post about how this move from Digg is a sign of desperation to show growth numbers to their investors.

If this is what Digg needs to do as a business, then this is what Digg needs t

o do.  It's their site, their users, and their traffic.  This is SUPPOSED TO BE A BUSINESS.  This isn't utopia, everything isn't supposed to be free of business objectives.  We need to stop stabbing our own in the back every time they they act like a business instead of a playground game.

If a company wants to use framesets to increase user engagement and it works, then we should support them. If it proved to be a worse experience for their users, that's a different story.  At this point unique vists are up 20% so it seems like the experience is improved.   The future of our industry depends on our ability to execute at this crucial juncture to turn a profit.  If we can't, then the venture funding will dry up and we'll have to figure out what to do with our 'Internet skills'.  The answer will probably be to work for a giant corporation who won't give a shit about a whining blog.

Stop undermining our colleagues when they make business decisions.  Stop 'taking a stand' against something that doesn't even effect you just to cause a stir and drive traffic.   Backstabbing our colleagues when they are executing is useless and detrimental to our industry.