Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Top Digg User Zaibatsu Banned - Reactions from Both Zaibatsu and Digg Management

There's more user unrest in the community of popular social news site Digg, after the all-time number 3 ranked user Zaibatsu, a.k.a. Reg Saddler, was banned for alleged multiple violations of the Digg Terms of Use. That decision is "final and irreversible", according to an email Saddler got from Digg today. JD Rucker of Social News Watch interviewed Saddler to discuss the ban - we have the exclusive audio below.

ReadWriteWeb also contacted Digg to find out their side of the story - we have Digg's response below too.

So why was Saddler banned? It wasn't associated with the recent bannings of other digg users over using Greasemonkey scripts. Rather the ban was handed down after Saddler submitted a website which was, in the words of an email Saddler received from Digg, "spam and a solicitation of products and/or services".

Digg's Response

We sought a response from Digg on the banning, since Zaibatsu was a high ranking user who had seemingly put in a lot of effort and work into the community.

Digg's Sr. Director of Marketing & Communications, Beth Murphy, responded that "this user has been banned for multiple violations of the Digg Terms of Use over period of time and not just a single incidence."

So Digg's position is clearly that Zaibatsu has a history of TOS violations, not just the latest one.

What Got Zaibatsu Kicked Out

We don't know the previous violations, and Digg wouldn't discuss details because they told us they're "unable to comment on the specifics of this or any case given that we try to protect the privacy of our users".

Nevertheless, let's look at what the final straw regarding Zaibatsu was. The digg submissions in question, and there were two of them, were photos of a female digger. Although these submissions are no longer on Digg, the following titles give you a good idea of the content:


After learning of his ban after those submissions, Saddler told Digg that "I didn't know that a picture of a female digger was against the TOS. I didn't even know that she was selling something on the site.

Source : ReadWriteWeb