A group of influential conservative members of the behemoth social media site Digg.com have just been caught red-handed in a widespread campaign of censorship, having multiple accounts, upvote padding, and deliberately trying to ban progressives. An undercover investigation has exposed this effort, which has been in action for more than one year.
“The more liberal stories that were buried the better chance conservative stories have to get to the front page. I’ll continue to bury their submissions until they change their ways and become conservatives.”
-phoenixtx (aka vrayz)
One bury brigade in particular is a conservative group that has become so organized and influential that they are able to bury over 90% of the articles by certain users and websites submitted within 1-3 hours, regardless of subject material. Literally thousands of stories have already been artificially removed from Digg due to this group. When a story is buried, it is removed from the upcoming section (where it is usually at for ~24 hours) and cannot reach the front page, so by doing this, this one group is removing the ability of the community as a whole to judge the merits or interest of these stories on their own (in essence: censoring content). This group is known as the Digg “Patriots”.
I am only posting a very small selection of quotes because the piece is quite long but it is an excellent analysis of how a relatively small group of people get to influence what kind of news reach the mainstream. My favorite quote “I’ll continue to bury their submissions until they change their ways and become conservatives”. That pretty much sums up their entire belief system, doesn’t it? You know, I grew up in a Latin American dictatorship (one of the bloody ones, actually) and that’s how the entire system operated (i.e. we will beat you into submission until you are like “us”). However, it just didn’t work. Everyone who was different certainly knew that opposing opinions were being censored and over exposure to authoritarian ways only made people more firm and convinced in their liberal ways. If the system of censorship had worked to turn people into “conservatives”, I and everyone else who went to school during the dictatorship would be a homophobe, militarist, authoritarian, Catholic fascist. But we are not. So, one would hope that these “Digg Brigade” would at least learn from historical experiments of a similar nature. Sure, you can control opinion for a while (at least until someone calls you on your bullshit or you are vanished by the forces of your own incompetence), but those methods never change people. In my case (and I can only speak from my own experience with authoritarianism), they only made me more resolute in my dissent and opposition.
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