The Washington Post’s social advertising firm SocialCode has hired 15 engineers from Digg today, confirming rumors last week that the community news site was due for a shakeup.
Digg entered into serious negotiations with the Washington Post about selling the entire company nearly a month ago, as VentureBeat previously reported. However, it looks like the post was only interested in the site’s talent, leaving its brand name and underlying social news aggregation technology still available for a sale. Digg was also reportedly pitching the sale of the company to other big news publications, such as CNN.
The SocialCode firm is dedicated to helping advertisers create communities out of their social media following — something the Digg engineers are quite familiar with. As part of the talent deal, the former Digg employees will assume leadership roles at SocialCode. The company’s VP of Ad products Alan Lippman will assume the position of chief scientist at SocialCode, while software dev Will Larson will become SocialCode’s director of engineering.
It’s worth noting that the Washington Post didn’t poach Digg’s staff. The move was endorsed this morning by the startup’s CEO Matt Williams in a blog post, which means Digg is on its way to getting completely dismantled. Without engineers, we probably won’t be seeing any new features on the site or integration with other services. Essentially, Digg’s days are numbered.
Image illustration by Tom Cheredar