Digg reckons their algorithms can spot paid-to-Digg patterns. Looks like they can’t. Annalee Newitz has successfully paid a company to Digg her blog, read about it over at Wired
I can tell you exactly how a pointless blog full of poorly written, incoherent commentary made it to the front page on Digg. I paid people to do it. What’s more, my bought votes lured honest Diggers to vote for it too. All told, I wound up with a “popular” story that earned 124 diggs — more than half of them unpaid. I also had 29 (unpaid) comments, 12 of which were positive.
Whenever there is a beneficial system someone will work out how to game it for money. I’m sure Digg is getting unfairly singled out also, people must be gaming del.icio.us, Reddit, Stumble’, etc.
The main part that interests me isn’t so much people are being paid to Digg (shock horror), more that the sheeple instinct is so strong that people who were not paid voted the intentionally bad site up. Quite an insight into human nature, eh?