Blog DOB: 30 Jun, 2012
Name: opngjias opngjias
For those who don't know, dmoz, or the "Open Directory Project" is the "largest, most comprehensive human-edited directory of the web. It is constructed and maintained by a vast, global community of volunteer editors."
The DMOZ database feeds search engines like Google, AOL, and Lycos. This is one of the reasons web developers will endeavour to have their sites included in there.
Oddly, the fact that all submitted content is human reviewed, is broadcast as a major quality control advantage. The volunteers or "net citizens" as they are called, can cull "out the bad and useless......keeping only the best content".
There are over 4million sites included in the directory, The directory has over 74,000 editors managing 590,000 categories. Anyone can apply to be an editor. You pick a category and then soon you too can keep out "the bad and useless".
If you ever have the patience to browse through the dmoz directory you might be surprised by some of the included sites. At various stages I've found holding pages, pages only made to click through to sales, pages without any useful content, pages that are badly made or inaccessible. These are clearly not "the best content" and their inclusion in the directory would seem to add credibility to tales of corruption among the editors.
There are stories that the editors can be bribed, stories they will deliberately sabotage competitors sites either by changing their classifications or not adding them at all to the directory. The dmoz directory aims "to become the definitive catalog of the web".
We are not living in some future world where corruption and greed have been erased from humanity; the ego has not been subdued and we do not live together in an open, intelligent and selfless society. Can a human edited database (which has to inherently include all the subjectivity, bias and preferences of the editors) therefore produce objective results, can it be relied on to keep only "the best content"?
Well done for trying but I think I would feel safer in the hands of an algorithm.