Mario Sundar

LinkedIn's 2nd PR hire. These are my thoughts on products, public relations, and startups.

The Rise of DiggNation

Yesterday evening after I got a call from Jeremiah, we decided to head over to the DIGG party in San Francisco, which was held to launch a new series of lifestyle online video shows. The event was quite successful, upcoming.org had over 300 signed up and most of them seemed to have showed up. Quite an interesting bunch of people, who all had the common objective of having a good time — and a good time they had.

I had a chance to meet web2.0 party-goers Thomas Hawk (featured in ScobleShow’s 1st Episode), Gabe Rivera (TechMeme), Daniela Barbosa (Factiva), Jeremy Pepper (the PR2.0 guy),  Kevin Burton (TailRank) and James Gross (Federated Media). But I digress, the event was to launch Digg’s new series of lifestyle online video shows. Kind of like MTV meets MySpace, although they apparently thought not.

Here’s a 4-part Evolution of Digg:

1. Digg Launch:
It all started off, with the launch of Digg in November 2004 by Kevin Rose, Owen Byrne, Ron Gorodetzky, and Jay Adelson (who serves as CEO), all of whom currently play an active role in the management of the site:

Digg is a news website with an emphasis on technology and science articles. It combines social bookmarking, blogging, and syndication with a form of non-hierarchical, democratic editorial control. News stories and websites are submitted by users, and then promoted to the front page through a user-based ranking system.

2. The Rise of Digg:
As of July 2006, there were over 400,000 registered Digg users. This represented substantial growth from one year earlier, when in July 2005 membership had just reached 17,000. The popularity and success of Digg culminated in Kevin Rose, making it to the cover of Business Week recently.

3. Diggnation Podcast:
Digg parlays the immense success of Digg to start a podcast series Diggnation podcast featuring Kevin Rose, and Alex Albrecht.

For lack of a better analogy, Diggnation resembles a geek-star version of Wayne’s World. The internet podcast show garners a sizable web fan following among the hipper, early-adopter, tech obsessed youth demographic. Well, here is why their audiences digg it so much.

4. Revving Success:
The success of Diggnation has now led to the launch of a series of videocasts around a common brand called Rev3. Check out Jeremiah’s post, which gives an in-depth overview of the nitty-gritties of the new web channel.

Smart move by the founders of Digg; I must add. If the party is any indicator, then the launch of Rev3 makes a lot of sense. As Daniela rightly pointed out; TV killed the radio and the web may just end up killing TV. Thomas has an awesome take on the future of TV.

What may the future hold?
I believe that television is slowly-but-surely morphing into web based TV and the lines between the two are already blurring. Imagine the immediate future populated with two kinds of conversion products:

1. TV to PC: Example — SlingBox
2. PC to TV: Example — iTv

The long-term future will definitely see the necessity for a central repository/database for ALL multi-media content that you enjoy and that entertain you most: Music, Movies, Pictures, Ads, Videos, Web, DVD, HD-DVD and that device will probably be some sort of storage device (like your hard-drive). All that’s remaining in the puzzle is one large monitor, a 82-inch flat screen TV — your central source for all of the following:

1. normal TV (standard & cable)
2. internet based shows (downloaded to your 1Tb hard-drive:)
3. browser based shows (maybe the browser will dissapear)
4. user-created content: pictures, your music, dvd, etc…

And when that happens the success of internet based TV shows like the ScobleShow, Diggnation is more than guaranteed.

Have a great rest-of-the-week!

Filed under: Uncategorized

9 Responses

  1. [...] I headed to the launch party with Mario, ran into the usual suspects I see at most events. During the presentation videos, I was very impressed by the rich and well produced content. It’s really a lifestyle channel, that’s a bit edgier and more raw than traditional TV. In fact they are specially aiming to be the opposite of MTV. After the introductions, videos ran and played clips of all the shows. First broadcast television. Then cable television. Now, you can kill your television. Revision3 aims to prove that on-demand, distributed online content is better, faster, more effective, and better targeted to what YOU want to watch. [...]

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  2. I loved Wayne’s world.

    Like

  3. Mario Sundar says:

    Hi J,

    I know. I think Diggnation is totally modelled after Wayne’s world.

    “Blogging times” thinks they’re sort of like – Beavis & Butthead! Either way, nice format, great success.

    Mario

    Like

  4. Paul McEnany says:

    I can’t friggin’ wait. Any show, on any format. Mobile, PC, Television whatever. It’s gonna be cool, this much I know.

    Like

  5. Mario Sundar says:

    Paul,
    These are exciting times indeed. Do you catch the Diggnation Podcast?

    Let me know what you think.

    Mario

    Like

  6. Paul McEnany says:

    No, Digg’s in the feedreader, but I’ve never actually been over to the podcast. It’s one of those things I’ve been meaning to do for forever, and just haven’t yet. But, I think I’ll take care of that right now!

    Like

  7. Mario Sundar says:

    Awesome! Plus, I think I’ve already evangelized enough of Ze Frank! Another one of my favorite videocasts :)
    Mario

    Like

  8. [...] Over the past week, you may have also noticed a trend with the launch of web-based media shows such as Rev3 and the ScobleShow. It left me wondering how all this is going to impact the corporate marketing machinery (marketing collateral, events, etc…) that most Fortune 500 companies have assembled over time and what changes we may see in the near future. [...]

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  9. [...] We have all heard of major TV channels NBC, ABC, etc…but have you thought of how the landscape may be for Web TV a few years from now. I’ve always maintained that web video shows like Rev3, ScobleShow will catapult their producers Digg, Podtech, etc… into major webTV channel status. We already saw that with Digg launching Rev3 recently. [...]

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