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Total votes : 10

Should DMOZ be regulated?

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    Yes
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    No
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    Can´t decide

Should DMOZ be regulated?

  • Martin
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Post 3+ Months Ago

They did a good job, they are highly successful and it is a fine example of true internet democracy - but only at first sight.

Democracy is about broad and easy public participation (perfect with DMOZ), transperency (lacking) and mechanisms against abuse of power (inappropriate).

Unless they come up with a new, improved policy to overcome transperency and control deficits, it is only a question of time that legislation will step in.

I doubt, however, that the "meta editors" and anonymous persons behind the scene are open for a change.

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Post 3+ Months Ago

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>>Democracy is about broad and easy public participation (perfect with DMOZ)

Who said the ODP was a democracy? Who said it was public property? Who said that everyone and his dog has a say in its operation? What you actually mean to say is that it is about time webmasters where able to shove their oar in because editors choose not to list their utter crap! Sorry but that is the only word for it.

It is not a directory for webmasters. It is not public property. You worry about your own site and let the ODP worry about theirs. If I was to tell you that you have to add my link to your site I can only guess at what the response would be. I have no right to tell you what to put on your site so why on earth should ODP be any different.

>transperency (lacking)

You cannot get more transparent. Our guidelines are on public display. If you are asking to find out specific of rejection then you are not going to get it and this is to prevent abuse by webmasters. Simple.

>and mechanisms against abuse of power (inappropriate).

A report abuse link has been added onto every page (some pages have not yet hit the public server but they will once they are generated again). ODP take abuse very seriously and editors found to be abusing the system soon get ejected. If you check in RZ you will find many 'my login don't work... why?' threads. Put 2 + 2 together and work out why. I take great pride and enjoy checking up on fellow editors. I like finding out why that editor ammended that description and I like being suspicious and checking if that editor is connected to that site in anyway. There are a lot of eyes looking at every editor.

>Unless they come up with a new, improved policy to overcome transperency

can't see this issue. Transparency is plentiful. But don;t expect to find out how to be abusive of the directory because that is when walls will be built.

>and control deficits

Don't understand what this is meant to be implying.

>it is only a question of time that legislation will step in.

ODP is a website. Why should ODP have legislation? You put on your website what content you like.... so does ODP.

>I doubt, however, that the "meta editors" and anonymous persons behind the scene are open for a change.

Meta editors spend a lot of their time arranging change and ensuring it is implemented. Just because you don't see it please don't be nieve enough to think it is not happening.

As for the anonymous persons behind the scenes.... what is anonymous about AOL?

What you are asking for is 'please tell me how I can fix my site because I want it listed'.

Why should I or any other editor oblige. If you need financial advice you ask a financial adviser, not a shop assistant. If you want advice on how to make a website interesting and fascianating and UNIQUE you don;t ask and editor of a directory that you are trying to get listed in.

It is almost like applying for a job and asking the employer what he would like to see on the CV so you can get the job! Please!

I am not that nieve that I don't know abuse is going on but trust me editors don't like being tarred with the same brush as the minority. Systems are in place and a lot goes on behind the scenes. If we said what went on behind the scenes then abusive editors whould know how to bypass them. That is why transparency is not always a good thing in some instances.

ODP don't tell you what to put on your website so why are people constatly trying to tell them what to put on theirs and then kick off when they don't do it.

I have not voted because it is regulated and regulated by the people who operate it. The vote should have asked 'Should the public have more say in the running of DMOZ' then, I would have voted, NO! It is not a public entity so why should the public (more specifically webmasters) have a say.

I cannot remember hearing one of our users (who is not a webmaster) complaining.
  • Martin
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Buster,

Let´s calm down, O.K.?
I said "They did a good job", and that includes you and all of your collegue editors who have spent much of their time working on the project.

>Who said the ODP was a democracy?

dmoz.org states in it´s "About" Page: "It is constructed and maintained by a vast, global community of volunteer editors", "The Republic of The Web", "in the spirit of the Open Source movement" and so on. To me, this is a clear commitment to good democratic internet tradition.

>You cannot get more transparent.

Are you kidding? The DMOZ.org website doesn´t even have an impressum: no email address, no webmaster, no postal address, no contact name, nothing. Under german law they could be sued for this omission. Who are the people behind DMOZ? How are decisions being made? How is DMOZ organized? Is there a managing board and who are the members? Do they openly publish controversal issues?

>You worry about your own site and let the ODP worry about theirs

Full ACK as long as neither of our sites has a dominatiing position. Google certainly is in this category; I opened this discussion to find out what other members think if DMOZ has reached this position!

>What you are asking for is 'please tell me how I can fix my site because I want it listed'

I feel offended by this statement.

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Post 3+ Months Ago

I am perfectly calm. I apologise if it sounded like on big rant back at ya but I am afraid that after replying to stupic amounts of rants in any given day you find your tolerance level getting very low especially when most of the post exist only to stir things up.

>dmoz.org states in it´s "About" Page: "It is constructed and maintained >by a vast, global community of volunteer editors", "The Republic of The >Web", "in the spirit of the Open Source movement" and so on. To me, >this is a clear commitment to good democratic internet tradition.

It is not clear to me. DMOZ.org is 'a website'. It is constructed and maintained by... blah blah blah. That does not make it a democracy in the sense of public involvement.

The full text of that paragraoh says:
Quote:
The Open Directory was founded in the spirit of the Open Source movement, and is the only major directory that is 100% free. There is not, nor will there ever be, a cost to submit a site to the directory, and/or to use the directory's data. The Open Directory data is made available for free to anyone who agrees to comply with our free use license.


In the spirit of Open Source movement the data that is made by the editors is made available under free to use license from rdf.dmoz.org That is Open Source. Open Source is not opening up the entire operation of a project, including internal operations, to the public.

I states how you can get involved and contribute:
Quote:
Like any community, you get what you give. The Open Directory provides the opportunity for everyone to contribute. Signing up is easy: choose a topic you know something about and join. Editing categories is a snap. We have a comprehensive set of tools for adding, deleting, and updating links in seconds. For just a few minutes of your time you can help make the Web a better place, and be recognized as an expert on your chosen topic.


Quote:
No Email address


But has a feedback link on nearly every page and in many places you will find the staff@dmoz.org address. It also has a fourm, not connected with ODP, at http://www.resource-zone.com and an abuse link is also visible on most pages.

Quote:
no webmaster


It is a directory! The content of the directory is maintained by editors. Each editor is contactable via their profile. If it was a single webmaster I doubt that they would have time to reply to emails :lol:

Quote:
no postal address


And what purpose would a postal address be for a online resource? Does that make every webmaster resource on the net questionable or hidden behind walls?

Quote:
Under german law they could be sued for this omission.


I am afraid there will not be a single website on the internet that will comply with every law in every country. The ODP, I understand, operates under laws in the State of California (well at least the license does).

Quote:
Who are the people behind DMOZ?


See http://dmoz.org/Computers/Internet/Sear ... y_Project/

Quote:
How are decisions being made? How is DMOZ organized?


See http://dmoz.org/Computers/Internet/Sear ... rocedures/ which details a lot of the procedures for how the ODP operate internally and as a whole.

As for
Quote:
Is there a managing board and who are the members?


There has recently been a change in the way ODP operate as a group however as I am unsure as to any public announcements so I will refrain from commenting however I am aware that certain bits of information are leaking through into some of the webmaster forums. However it is safe to say that for the majority of aspects decisions are made on a consensus basis. Sometimes these decisions will include the standard editors and other times it will be made by a group of experienced meta editor behind closed fora. Other than legal and alike issues most decisions are based on consensus so there is not really a head honcho as it where.

It is self-regulating. To be honest most people only know about DMOZ, and complain so much, because of the Google connection. Yet the connection with google is just as little as the jo.bloggs.com site who also downloads our data.

The problems that everyone seems to refer to would not exist if Google was not such an important part of the internet these days. It is an unfortunate by-product of such a successful directory and community. We are the middle man that everyone is begging for the leg up. If Google stoppe using ODP data our job would be a lot easier and suddenly webmaters would not really be all that interested in being listed.

I make them last comments because it is my opinion that DMOZ is no-where near this dominating position in my opinion. Google is yes... and in a big way... but they are only a user of our data like anyone else.

I am not sure on the stats of DMOZ but I bet it is visited by more spiders/robots than human searchers (of course excluding the webmasters checking for their listing).
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Post 3+ Months Ago

The problem with DMOZ is down to their business model. It was doomed from the start.

Running a directory where volunteers are free to voice for the company on their forum is going to fail from the start.

A lot of issues people have are regarding how unhelpful DMOZ are to get listed in.
On the forums i've seen a lot of the editors being rude and inconsiderate to people trying to get listed.

The time limit for sites could be justified if they presented themselves with a public face - soemone who was helpfull and answered peoples questions

As it is - you site takes months to get listed - the mods are rude..... people are dropping DMOZ'sd results from there sites daily, top programmers are leaving their company......

They gotta do soemthign and fast.
  • vetofunk
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Quote:
The problems that everyone seems to refer to would not exist if Google was not such an important part of the internet these days. It is an unfortunate by-product of such a successful directory and community. We are the middle man that everyone is begging for the leg up. If Google stoppe using ODP data our job would be a lot easier and suddenly webmaters would not really be all that interested in being listed.


Exactly.

I am an editor for a few other directories, but do they get anywhere near the submissions as DMOZ, no. Why? Because they do not have a Google connection. That is why DMOZ is so important.

The few DMOZ categories I am the editor for have hundreds of sites that are backlogged and have been backlogged. I get to them when I have time, after all, I am a volunteer, I am not getting paid to do this. That's why people have to wait to be included in DMOZ. DMOZ is great...it is very important to Google and its FREE...just be patient with your submissions, stop complaining all the time.

Some editors can be rude, but it's usually the more important ones, because they get the same questions over and over again. If people would just read the guidelines and do a little research at http://www.research-zone.com, they would get a lot of their questions answered.

If people want to get listed in a week, call Yahoo and get a Yahoo Directory listing. Of course, you'll have to shell out $299.00 per year, and it won't be nearly as important as DMOZ.

Maybe DMOZ should just start charging for quick inclusion. I think most people would pay for that.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I doubt dmoz can charge for quick inclusion. dmoz will have to totally change their system for paid inclusions.

I agree that many people will pay for it, inclding myself :-) heheh.
pfi dirs are getting shelved sooner or later, in my opinion.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

That would be the only way to stop people's complaining that it takes to long to be included. To have the resources to have instant inclusion and to be regulated, you would need more money coming in.

Hmm...Google's got monies
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Post 3+ Months Ago

heheh. maybe dmoz should change into an ebay clone and start charging people for inclusion? the higher the bid, the first in line you will be. lol.

I think it may work cuz it is always the guys with bigger pockets who win..
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Post 3+ Months Ago

vetofunk wrote:
Quote:
Some editors can be rude, but it's usually the more important ones, because they get the same questions over and over again. If people would just read the guidelines and do a little research at http://www.research-zone.com, they would get a lot of their questions answered.

If people want to get listed in a week, call Yahoo and get a Yahoo Directory listing. Of course, you'll have to shell out $299.00 per year, and it won't be nearly as important as DMOZ.

Maybe DMOZ should just start charging for quick inclusion. I think most people would pay for that.


Sorry but no matter how much a company gets asked the same questions its up to them to offer the same customer service level. If a person cannot handle that then they shouldn't be doing what they are doing.

When was the last time you went into tescos and asked where the chips/fries were and they were rude about the fact they were down isle 8? It doesn't happen because it isn't good business.

For DMOZ to offer a paid option would go against all of the original business principles of DMOZ.... i.e "open" directory project......... Not paid directory project............
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Post 3+ Months Ago

It's not really a company, its a volunteer organization. Those people in Tescos are getting paid, they are not volunteering. It is a whole different story when people are getting paid.

God. I am starting to sound like I am backing the rude people...by no means am I. Anytime anyone emails me a question about their site, I always answer with a kind response. But, it goes back to DMOZ being regulated. DMOZ is not, so many of the top editors can be rude and get away with it.

As far as PFI, of course its not the business model, but if people want sites included instantly and want a little person to answer their every question, DMOZ is going to need money. Either from PFI or get someone to back them. This is where Google could come in. Google has the money to do so.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

vetofunk wrote:
It's not really a company, its a volunteer organization. Those people in Tescos are getting paid, they are not volunteering. It is a whole different story when people are getting paid.



Thats exactly my point :)
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Post 3+ Months Ago

We agree...

:-)
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Post 3+ Months Ago

veto - whats ya name? I think we will get on :P hehe
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Your first day here and I think we have went back and forth (agreed/disagreed) about ideas on quite a few things. Most posts for me in a quite a while. Cant wait for new threads ;-)

Welcome to Ozzu.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

vetofunk wrote:
Your first day here and I think we have went back and forth (agreed/disagreed) about ideas on quite a few things. Most posts for me in a quite a while. Cant wait for new threads ;-)

Welcome to Ozzu.


Thats what discussion forums are all about :) I love to learn new things - there are many people in the world who know more than me about the net and i hope to learn from them.

You never did tell me ya name! ... Im Jessica - like you didn't guess :P
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Post 3+ Months Ago

My actual name is Veto...
No, it's Jef.

:-)
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nice to meet you jeff :)
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Quote:
For DMOZ to offer a paid option would go against all of the original business principles of DMOZ.... i.e "open" directory project......... Not paid directory project............


Correct. One very important part of the project is it overall aims and objective and in all fairness none of the aims include anything about including submitted sites 'quick fast'. While the directory grows for the user it is on the right path and no junctions are required for any reason. In other words there is no need to speed up how quick sites are added from the suggestion pool. The only people that want them processed quickly is the webmaster/company and they are not why we edit.

As for the charging... completely 100% (if not 1000000000%) against the motives of the project and would not happen under any circumstance. The backbone of the project is it non-commercialism and it is that that makes it so successful for the user.

A result of charging for inclusion would instantly give financial bias and motives to the operation of the directory.

Start charging and every single editor I know would leave within 10 minutes of the announcement.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

you mention the user.... but exactly who is the DMOZ's target user group?


See one of the problems i noticed is that the main people who visit DMOZ are the webmasters trying to get their sites listed.

Obviously people don't use DMOZ like they would use google - so the only benefit of the dmoz directory if for webmasters.

So lets look at the webmasters need - quick registration / listings.... A good amount if traffic.... But as you just said - the needs of the "actual" users are not important.

Thats where DMOZ goes wrong. The directory works because of ther webmasters trying to get listed - not because of the users trying to find sites.


If anything this is the whole point. Signed post

Volunteer Regional Editor

The word of DMOZ - no... the word of an editor.... the simple fact is - any business emplyee would never reply to a post with the phrase...

In other words there is no need to speed up how quick sites are added from the suggestion pool. The only people that want them processed quickly is the webmaster/company and they are not why we edit.

Because they would knoe who their target market is.
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Quote:
the only benefit of the dmoz directory if for webmasters.


Your kidding right? If users don't use the directory then there would be no point in webmasters trying to get in. There are plenty of ways to get links without getting into DMOZ.

Most of the users who benefit from ODP come from the downstream data users and yes google happens to be one of them. I have a copy of the ODP within many of my sites and they are rather busy sites even though it is an exact copy of thousands of other sites who also include ODP data on their sites.

If users benefit from the Google directory (and yes thousands upon thousands of people use the directory within google) then we, as editors, are pleased that our work is of benefit from the people who are navigating down to find a site by category. That is one of our aims.

Quote:
So lets look at the webmasters need - quick registration / listings.... A good amount if traffic.... But as you just said - the needs of the "actual" users are not important.


Thats for Yahoo to worry about.

Quote:
Thats where DMOZ goes wrong. The directory works because of ther webmasters trying to get listed - not because of the users trying to find sites.


I don't see that DMOZ is going wrong. It list sites. It does exactly what it says on the tin. As for the directory going wrong because webmasters can't get in no-one cares. Sorry but that is the hard truth and respectfully this is the one hard facts that gives editors a bad name allbeit an unjustified bad name.

You see and editor saying "I don't care about you - I don't care about your site" and you think that this is bad customer service and that we owe you something more. The fact is a submission is a 'suggestion'. It's a 'heads up' that a site exists. It is NOT an application for a listing. I am a webmaster and I can sympathise with others who want to get their site listed but 'as an ODP editor' that is not my concern.

How would you feel if I asked you to add my 'sponge cake menu' to YOUR menu hobby site and then got really annoyed with you just because YOU decided that it was not what YOU wanted on YOUR site.

ODP is for the users and not the webmaster. Until that fact can be understood no-one will ever get any closer to understanding why dmoz DOES work and continues to work in a very big way. I say again that it only 'don't work' for the webmasters.
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Quote:
Because they would know who their target market is.


Market? Market? DMOZ is not a marketing company or site. It is not business promotion tool. It don't care if your business is going to calapse tomorrow because we delay in your site being listed. I am damn sure I don't care and I will not loose one ounce of sleep (not as an editor anyway).

The simple fact is (and anyone who is reading this can take this how they like) ANY site that relies that heavily on a listing in DMOZ to suceed seriously needs to address their business model.

A listing in DMOZ, if it happens, should be treated as nothing more than a pat on the back that an editor felt your site was of use to our users.
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Lol - webmasters do not try and get into DMOZ because of the huge amounts of traffic it is going to send to their sites..... The simple fact is, people do not use directories... they use search engines.

Webmasters.... use directories. - theres a big big difference.

True there are plenty of other ways to get links - but how else can you get a link in google directory? Well you can't can you - not without being in DMOZ....

A single link in DMOZ gives you an average PR link on a lot of sites... these sites covering multiple IP blocks, the way google, yahoo and msn like their backlinks...... No webmaster is going to miss an opportunity like that (not if their in their right mind anyway.)

Quote:
Thats for Yahoo to worry about.


This is my whole point - your an editor... a VOLUNTEER editor... your giving your voice as the voice of DMOZ... and everyones going to take it as that as gospal.

There isn't a single successful business in the world that would have given that response.

Quote:
It does exactly what it says on the tin.


Indeed it does... but where does it say on the tin that the editors have the right to be rude to you and 99% of the time be unhelpful.....

That must be in the small print huh? ;)

Crappy sites shouldn't get into the directory... agreed. If a site doesn't meet the standards then it has no means being there... thats not the argument. But you did make a good point....

Quote:
As for the directory going wrong because webmasters can't get in no-one cares. Sorry but that is the hard truth


Yea.. you guys just don't care...... thats why DMOZ isn't the force it could be. Ive seen websites not make the directory because of the person that submitted it.... (and editors admit this) ive seen sites removed because a new editor took over and the site they removed was in direct competition with them.... all you editors care about is looking after nuumber 1 - you don't care what reflection your comments have upon DMOZ.

Your whole comments have justified all my posts above... the same "i just don't give a damn attitude" that you guys always give.

good analogy witht he sponge cake thing - but really not relevant.....

Quote:
ODP is for the users and not the webmaster. Until that fact can be understood no-one will ever get any closer to understanding why dmoz DOES work and continues to work in a very big way.


I think until the editors understand who their user base is - nothing is ever going to change.

Quote:
Market? Market? DMOZ is not a marketing company or site.


lets re-read what i said....

Quote:
The word of DMOZ - no... the word of an editor.... the simple fact is - any business emplyee would never reply to a post with the phrase...

In other words there is no need to speed up how quick sites are added from the suggestion pool. The only people that want them processed quickly is the webmaster/company and they are not why we edit.

Because they would know who their target market is.


where does that say anything about dmoz being a marketing tool? or a marketing company? nowhere.

I was refering to dmoz's user base.....

You havn't directly answered anything regarding my posts yet you have quoted them.....

To end with - we do agree on one thing -

Quote:
The simple fact is (and anyone who is reading this can take this how they like) ANY site that relies that heavily on a listing in DMOZ to suceed seriously needs to address their business model.


I couldn't agree more. I seen a comical post on the forums not so long ago saying he was gonna have to close his site down if he didn't get listed.....
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Well it is cleary a case of having to agree to disagree. I know why I edit as do I also know why other editor edit and none of them focus on the needs of the webmaster - they are a by-product of the website but not part of 'our' equasion.

Quote:
I seen a comical post on the forums not so long ago saying he was gonna have to close his site down if he didn't get listed.....


I think somewhere there was even the 'my family is that poor we are falling off the bread line and if you don't list us we will loose our house and our kids will go hungry'.

Of course legal threats are always ripe simply because a site don't get listed. <editor hat off> I don't normally refer directly to sites but you should pop over to Resource Zone and check out messages that refer to osca-cars.co.uk and onestopcaradvice.co.uk - this is one of the persistent pain in the arses but does make funny reading all the same.

See http://resource-zone.com/forum/showthread.php?t=7163
http://resource-zone.com/forum/showthread.php?t=9446
http://resource-zone.com/forum/showthread.php?t=10101
http://resource-zone.com/forum/showthread.php?t=21914
http://resource-zone.com/forum/showthread.php?p=115621

<editor hat back on>
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Quote:
I think somewhere there was even the 'my family is that poor we are falling off the bread line and if you don't list us we will loose our house and our kids will go hungry'.


Lol - i bet you hear some great stories :P
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Post 3+ Months Ago

what exactly makes dmoz editors qualified for their jobs? Just a few questions and they pass the test?

what happens if your site is rejected by a not so good editor? isnt that tragic? :-)
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Im obviously missing your point?

Nobody is saying 5the DMOZ editors are bad.......
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I am totally out of point here.
I was just wondering about all these, hence the questions.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

madmonk wrote:
what exactly makes dmoz editors qualified for their jobs? Just a few questions and they pass the test?

what happens if your site is rejected by a not so good editor? isnt that tragic? :-)


It does seem to go a bit deeper than a couple of questions... I.e the y look into your experiences online .....

if you7r site is rejected by a not so good editor... well then they shouldn't have made it through the critique part. Thats up to dmoz to decide.

There cannot be good editors and bad editors for a project to be successful. They all need to be of the same standard......
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Post 3+ Months Ago

DMOZ can't be regulated.
It is open to abuse
It is abused
It is not the fault of DMOZ

DMOZ like so many powerful organisations and people totally lacks humility.

If one complaint is (IMHO) voiced more than any other its the length of time it takes to get a site recognised. eg I submitted a site months ago. where is it in the queue ? I have no idea.

A few more automated scripts would go a long way in helping. a way for people to log in and check on the progress of their submission
That way peoples concerns that they are being ignored could be alleviated. and a lot less agro would be generated.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

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