Yesterday the social news site Digg sorta exploded or imploded and I don't think the ramifications of this will be known for quite some time. If you haven't been following the story here is a quick recap.
A user posted a crack to play HD DVD on Linux based machines. Digg pulled it. Another user posted the crack again with news the original had been pulled. Digg pulled that and apparently cancelled that user's account.
All hell broke loose. Digg users screaming censorship started posting the crack in more posts than you can shake a shovel at. After one Digg staffer tried to stem the tide with a blog post, things got worse. Then Digg founder Kevin Rose basically threw in the towel to the users and said if Digg was going to go down, it would go down with a fight on the side of its users. (Intriguingly the hack had been posted in other places before, but it wasn't until this Digg moment that things went boom.)
The whole thing is tied up in DMCA restrcitions and I imagine there will be some lawsuits filed. Legally the issues are made for a big old lawyer fight. Not to mention a new copy protetction scheme on future HD DVD. But of course the horse has left the barn, and this hack is now everywhere.
Is it a revolution as some are claiming? Mike Arrington thinks so. Can Digg recover, Om Malik asks? Too early to tell in this attention deficit world. One thing is for sure though, the Digg users (numbers vary wildy there) have found out they have some power beyond voting up or voting down stories. Mob rule? Maybe.
This is going to be something worth watching.