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Reddit-Digg War Webcomic Chronicles the Battle for Social Media Dominance


When I first started writing online, making the front page of Digg could make my whole day brighter, but as time marched on in the strange world of social bookmarking, I started spending more and more time on Reddit, a baby blue board filled with odd and interesting links, and watched its readership swell while Digg’s glory has begun to fade.

The three-part webcomic “War” imagines the battle between Reddit and Digg for our hearts and eyeballs as an all-out war between the oligarchical Diggers and the liberating Reddit army. But while the comic focuses mainly on the politics of those two sites, there are jokes aplenty about sites from the Huffington Post to Twitter, and every site in between.

A Redditor called ncomment posted the first installment of “War” back in 2009, and finished the series just this month. It all begins in the nation of Digg, where the populace has grown discontent with the power users, Digg’s ruling class, which largely controls which posts make it to the front page. The lower classes stage demonstrations, debating how best to reform Digg and empower the 99 percent, but their political unrest is cut abruptly short by the appearance of UFOs in the sky. Soon, Digg finds that it has been invaded by Reddit aliens, and the two sites and their allies engage in an explosion-filled war.

“War” does contain a lot of in-jokes, and understanding some of the humor requires at least a passing familiarity with the sites, their policies and most infamous users. But tons of other sites play supporting roles in the Reddit-Digg War. Keep your eyes peeled for Easter eggs lurking in the background. Some sites get only the briefest of cameos, such as when the Reddit army captures the arcane Digg algorithm:

Other sites are more central to the story. Digg calls up its ally, the extremely powerful but slow StumbleUpon, in its fight for survival. And when the displaced Digg citizens start seeking refuge in other corners of the Internet, many arrive in the arboreal lands of Twitter, where a helpful, but short-lived bird explains the process for converting a Digger into a Tweeter:

“War” never reaches the point where Reddit experiences a baby boom and its citizenship is overrun by atheist high schoolers armed with meme generators. Read Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 of “War” now.

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