Diggnation, Revision3’s most popular vlog, operates a weekly summary for the grassroots news site Digg, where informed users write and post articles about the day’s breaking headlines, which it has been doing to much acclaim since July 2005. Like its parent site, Diggnation‘s initial focus was hardcore tech, but over time the show has become a repository for general quirky news with a tech bent. Co-hosts Kevin Rose and Alex Albrecht chat about the top stories that the Digg user base has nominated as being most significant to the community that week (with a little chatter about their lives along the way).
Rose and Albrecht are no strangers to tech-related entertainment. They were both on-camera hosts and personalities for programming on the late, great cable network TechTV before it was bought out and merged with gamer media company G4 in 2004. A year later, Rose co-founded Revision3 and has been helping to produce his own online tech content ever since.
In minimally edited videos, Kevin and Alex sit on a couch with laptops on laps and discuss the week’s top tech stories in one long shot that lasts about 15-20 minutes. There is some variance to this format. Sometimes they leave the couch and sit on stairs. Sometimes they go to bars, where their popularity precedes them as row after row of fans scream for them (although the joy they find in drinking beer while delivering the news is something that never changes).
On the whole, things haven’t changed that much since the show began in July 2005. Kevin and Alex are funny (that’s possibly the beer), jovial (so is that), and knowledgeable about their topic. Their geeky joy (combined with Digg’s inherent populism) is probably what has made the show such a success. In the early days when the two hosts only discussed tech news, the stories that were selected by Digg users were always interesting, quirky tech stories. The same still holds true today, despite the fact that their news coverage has broadened. Occasionally Kevin and Alex will discuss things like the sexy scandal involving Miss USA, but the majority of the show continues to be comprised of Japaneses robots falling down stairs, notes on leaked iPod firmware, and similar techy fare.
It’s like a very low-budget, unscripted “Daily Show” for techies, where the news broadcast is interrupted with meandering discourse and the occasional footage of Alex assaulting Kevin’s computer. If you enjoy that sort of shtick while listening to your news, you’ll enjoy every episode.