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Kevin Rose Becomes CEO in Shake-up at Digg

Former Digg CEO Jay Adelson

Jay Adelson, CEO of Digg for the last five years, is stepping down in order to pursue his “entrepreneurial calling,” he said today. Kevin Rose, founder and longtime public face of the company, will become chairman and acting CEO.

The move signals a deeper commitment to the company by Rose. Digg has long been Rose’s main gig but he is also an active angel investor in companies like Gowalla and Foursquare and always has multiple side projects going, among them Pownce (acquired by Six Apart) and WeFollow (now part of Digg). Rose, the geek icon and former TechTV host, founded Digg in 2004 and brought in Adelson to run it from the early days.

New Digg CEO Kevin Rose

Digg, which filters the news through user voting, was a groundbreaking site but has lost ground to the likes of Facebook and Twitter, which offer more personal ways of finding news. In order to compete, Digg is preparing for a major redesign that will make it more of a personalized news reader and offer better publisher tools for syndicating news.

Adelson had also been CEO of Digg sister company Revision3 (which produces Diggnation), but stepped down from that role in 2007; it’s now headed up by Jim Louderback. He said he will continue to advise Digg, but no longer in a day-to-day role.

11 Responses to “Kevin Rose Becomes CEO in Shake-up at Digg”

  1. I think it was all in due time. While the idea was fresh and interesting back then, there are just too many new technologies today that are taking it’s place. Interesting how time changes.

  2. No, the real question was why did the CEO of a successful “web 2.0 startup” company leave while things are supposedly going so well? Was he pushed out? Or are things not going that well?

  3. Does this mean Digg is heading toward its IPO? Kevin is only the acting CEO, so they’ll probably pick a CEO in the next month and then have an IPO in the next 5 months. The clock is ticking.

  4. Kevin’s ability to run a business is negligible. This won’t end well. Will he be smoking up before or after board meetings?

    There was a reason Jay was in charge – adult supervision.

  5. The real question is how Jay was allowed to be Diggs “absentee/part-time” CEO as he divided his time by actually living in New York hundreds of miles from the Digg offices. He only recently moved back to California. I suspect this has a lot to do with the short time between his return and his stepping down. Someone needs to put aside the goodwill toward Kevin and give us the real story.