Liz Gannes

Recent Posts by Liz Gannes

Is There a Second Act for Kevin Rose?

Digg founder Kevin Rose is starting a new company. Rose had told NetworkEffect at South by Southwest that he was working on a new start-up. Rose told me that it’s been 6.5 years since Digg started, and he is now ready for something new.

TechCrunch reported today that he had resigned and was closing a $1 million round in funding for the venture.

But, so far, no one’s saying what it is.

Let’s hope it turns out better than Digg has.

Because although Rose has had luck as a Web celebrity, calling yourself a “Digg founder” ain’t what it used to be, especially since his stint last year as interim CEO presided over a hugely unpopular launch that the company has been extracting itself from ever since.

Rose said he currently serves on Digg’s board. Sources said he didn’t actually “resign” from Digg, though, but rather pulled back after handing over the CEO role to outside hire Matt Williams. Last year, Rose called serving as interim Digg CEO a “nightmare” that “I would never wish on my worst enemy.”

While Rose would clearly rather be in the spotlight for his own success, he has been able to string together an impressive portfolio for an angel investor, with companies like Ngmoco, Twitter and Zynga. In addition to continuing to appear on Diggnation, Rose also recently launched a video show and newsletter called Foundation.

Update: Williams commented,

When I took over as CEO of Digg 6 months ago, Kevin’s role changed to that of Founder and Board member and nothing has changed since then. Thanks for all the positive comments we’ve been seeing, we’re excited about our direction as well.

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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald