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  #1  
Old 05-12-2010, 09:25 PM
snakeair snakeair is offline
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Former Dmoz Editor: Corruption Was Caught Quickly

Before you post your comments in this thread or direct any comments towards me, i am not a dmoz editor please keep that mind mind when replying to this thread. You need to read the full story first.

Not to long ago i created a thread on Does Dmoz Have Place Search? If you have not read that story yet, please do this an come back to this one.

Our newest Moderator MJ is in this story. From the WebProNews blog..

Quote:
We ran a story recently asking if Dmoz will continue to have a place in search. We received (and still are receiving) a great deal of comments on the article, or rather on Dmoz in general. Words like "corruption" and "corrupt" were used numerous times in describing the editorial process behind the Open Directory Project.
Continued at: Corruption Was Caught Quickly

Would like some comments on this story or the subject itself.
 
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Old 05-12-2010, 10:51 PM
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nightcrawler nightcrawler is offline
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Dmoz corruption is the hot topic, other day my friend was telling me(He is on DP) a guy offered permanent Dmoz listing for 50$. He adds more that you can find many editors who will do this as cheap as 30$ per website (I don't know how much reality in this), but from the past years people do look for corrupt editors. I think Dmoz is an old topic now, there are other ways that we can get back links. It really doesn't matter whether we are listed in Dmoz or not.

There is another thing apart from this topic, there are 1000's of websites who pick categories and listings from Dmoz and alter them so that they escape from duplication content issue and creates new niche directories. I have seen this thing where I was working before as a SEO Trainer.
 
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Old 05-13-2010, 01:07 AM
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I would like to state a few things but first, i must stress that these statements are personal comments that do not reflect the opinions of DMOZ, ODP or AOL.

Editors such as myself hear these claims daily, the claims of listings being sold, editor abuse and stuff like that. I wont even attempt to change your mind, i would however request that you read my comments, think about them and then, well, i guess you will make up your own mind and believe what you believe.

DMOZ IS CORRUPT
The most common claim of all and lets face it, the thousands of volunteer editors that we have are all corrupt? Not a chance.

Now, i will admit that at some stage, out of these thousands there has beeen and will be in the future, some corrupt ones. That is human nature.....But we fight hard to reduce these events and believe me, every possible step is taken to find and stop immediately, any editorial abuse.

YOU CAN BUY A LISTING
A common claim but you need to understand, no editor owns a cat and hundreds of editors have permissions to edit everywhere in the directory. Amongst other things, these editors are called Editalls, of which i am one.

Now please think.....lets say you actually did buy a listing from a corrupt editor. So he puts your site, "Tonys Toys" into a cat, describes it vividly, you pay your money and all is well in your mind. Now next time editor Snooks (or any of the other hundreds of editalls) is looking through cats, i just happen to pass through a cat and see the site description.

Mmmhhh its non-compliant......not only that its probably the wrong cat because most people want their site listed higher than it should be. We would edit it, move it and most certainly DELETE it if it is non-listable according to Our Guidelines So it wouldnt stay long anyway! Now....every single edit is recorded and ANY editors logs can be viewed by ANYONE. The lowest editor in the system can view the head honchos, RD Keating, the Editor In Chief. So if a bad edit was found, i reckon you can safely assume that the editors log would show everything, so how long would he be there? Not long at all.

EDITORIAL ABUSE
I could go on much more but needless to say, the fight against corruption is a daily problem both online, in real life and in DMOZ. If there is any concerns about Editorial Abuse, please report them HERE

The other side of the coin
The people that see my signature, do a whois on my site, obtain personal information such as my phone number and then harrass and threaten me and my family for not including their site. Im afraid this is a sad, but true event that took place only 2 months ago.

DMOZ is a link. It is not a magic link, it will not guarantee success. Only you can do that by building great sites, good content and giving web surfers what they want.

Just My Thoughts

Last edited by Snooks; 05-13-2010 at 01:16 AM.
 
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Old 05-13-2010, 01:22 AM
akumar akumar is offline
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We are managing some sites of our client. And we do try to push add our sites to DMOZ. I think there will always be some element of corruption in every portion of earth sphere. You can't beat it what most can be done is that ignore them. Directories like DMOZ can never be affected by some of corrupted people.

We truly believe in honesty of DMOZ

Alok
<link removed>

Last edited by Snooks; 05-13-2010 at 03:02 AM. Reason: Removal of link
 
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Old 05-13-2010, 01:52 AM
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Great argument Snooks, I truly agree with you. I read in the odp forum that if someone gets caught, they take immediate action. This corruption can be controled by paying the editalls or editors.

Ahh... It says you must spread some reputation around before giving to snooks again..
 
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Old 05-13-2010, 02:45 AM
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Originally Posted by nightcrawler View Post
Great argument Snooks, I truly agree with you. I read in the odp forum that if someone gets caught, they take immediate action. This corruption can be controled by paying the editalls or editors.
Paying editors would change the nature of the directory. We are volunteers and the directory is our hobby, all the editing we do is done because we want to do it, no one is forced to do anything.

Many editors would leave if any form of payment were introduced and do you not think we might then begin to attract editors who wanted the money rather than wanted to build categories?

Why would it stop any corruption that might happen? If someone is willing, and personally I do not believe this, to risk years of work to become an editor with wide enough permissions to take a few cents for a listing, do you not believe that they would want to double their income?

Every edit we do is associated with us for the rest of our editing career, the first edit I ever did 10 years ago is still logged and easily accessible. It was only after spending thousands of hours editing that I was given the great trust of being able to edit anywhere in the directory, but I usually edit in certain areas so edits out of that could easily be checked to see if there was any likelihood of my doing abusive editing.

The best method of detecting any abusive editing is by the continuing vigilance of DMOZ and by the continuing vigilance of the public. As Snooks says there is a button to report anyone thought to be abusive editing. But whilst there will always be some crooked people who foil our screening procedure and that we have to find and root out, there is also the other side of the coin. Site owners who cannot get a listing for their site, which they think is a life or death issue, re-read that section of Snook's post
Quote:
obtain personal information such as my phone number and then harrass and threaten me and my family for not including their site. Im afraid this is a sad, but true event that took place only 2 months ago
have to rationalise why they have not been listed. The easy 'my site is not good enough' or the more plausible 'my site has not yet been reviewed even after 5 years' is not enough and as in most things we then have conspiracy theories, 'they must be corrupt'. Add to that one or two DMOZ haters ie site owners who have been told that they will not be listed, yes I can name some but not sure Cricket would like that, and some booted editors whom we did find with their hands in the till who talk of editors taking money for listings and, bingo, you have a full blown belief in DMOZ's corruption. Look at those comments on the quoted site and see how many are site owners who want desperately for a listing and have not got one. Their site may well simply be in our suggestions pool.

Jim Noble, a meta editor of distinction, for many years will probably have seen some abusive editors because it was part of his job to look at the evidence and be part of those who did the booting, but I have seen editors dedicated to DMOZ, one could believe that it was their religion, who spent seemingly every waking moment either editing or thinking about what needs doing next in DMOZ and only a tiny number who did abusive editing. But that tiny number coming back to haunt the project. Long term readers of another forum will have seen them more than here (because v7 does not tolerate the abuse that usually accompanies the more vicious allegations, http://www.v7n.com/forums/web-direct...ml#post1128268)

My real solution which is not acceptable in DMOZ is to turn suggestions off, something I have long held and long suggested.

Last edited by anonymously; 05-13-2010 at 02:49 AM. Reason: typos
 
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  #7  
Old 05-13-2010, 03:50 AM
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You would have to be daft if you thought that there was no self interest or corruption in the Open directory. However in the main this is limited to editors joining to promote their own site, or clientís sites. And if they get past the application process they donít last long.

I would find it difficult to believe that there are editors who have access to large chunks of the directory who are selling links, itís just too easy to get caught.

There is a distain for those who abuse their privileges built into the culture of the editorial community and in particular the meta editors (those who manage the community). It is my view that the fear of admitting corrupt editors actually hinders the process of obtaining (and retaining) new editors, but that is another story.

The meta editors over the last 10+ years have developed a system of tools, checks and processes that are exceedingly effective at detecting those who seek to use the directory to their own ends. There are few scams tricks and cons that we have not seen before.

Over the years there have been many editors (at all levels) removed for misuse of their editorial privileges. This proves the obvious yes there are corrupt editors. However more importantly this also proves that there is a high level of vigilance.

Also any offers of payment for listing that are detected by the wider community are acted on with the usual result of the banning of the site. The editalls (whose numbers include anonymously and snooks) as well as the meta editors are very active in seeking out such webmasters.
 
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Old 05-13-2010, 06:33 AM
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mjtaylor mjtaylor is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John View Post
I would find it difficult to believe that there are editors who have access to large chunks of the directory who are selling links, it’s just too easy to get caught.

There is a distain for those who abuse their privileges built into the culture of the editorial community and in particular the meta editors (those who manage the community). It is my view that the fear of admitting corrupt editors actually hinders the process of obtaining (and retaining) new editors, but that is another story.
As a former editor, I can corroborate this view, as well as Snooks' excellent explanation.

Yes, there are corrupt editors, and they seem to get caught. The system is very transparent and there are always people looking over your shoulder.

It's one of the reasons it takes so long to get a listing. Editors are often too busy watching other editors to review and list sites.
 
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Old 05-13-2010, 05:15 PM
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There's 85,000+ editors in a volunteer organisation where SEO's and Webmaster's are told that a link in DMOZ is like gold.

Based on that, I think a reasonable person would expect that someone is going to try and make some money off the system. But what exactly is the % that we are talking about here? If it's a handful of rogue editors in a team of literally tens-of-thousands, we are talking about a tiny percentage.

Corruption is a pretty strong word, and a reasonable person would also suggest that submitters who cannot get their site listed in DMOZ would use this word to give the directory a bad name.

I've heard many people talk about corruption, interestingly enough none of them listed in DMOZ. Most likely just continuing the chinese whispers because they cannot seem to get their site listed. So rather than improve their site to increase their chances of being listed, it is far easier to label DMOZ irrelevant or corrupt.

The DMOZ editors that I have spoken to (many of them at this forum - former and current) display a high level of integrity and intellect.

I don't doubt that DMOZ has it's problems with people trying to cheat the system. But for an organisation that size, you'd have to expect a degree of cheating. Anyone that doesn't is living in a fantasy world. The same thing happens in real life in many businesses day in and day out - and no one bats an eyelid.

The important point here is the magnitude of the cheating and how quickly it is caught and rectified.
 
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Old 05-14-2010, 04:16 PM
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85,000 editors is the total number of people who have been editors on the project since it started. We operate on a few less than that at any one time this is the official figure from AOL/DMOZ blog
Quote:
In terms of the directory itself, we added more than 2500 new editors and more than 7000 editors contributed to the project this year
http://blog.dmoz.org/
 
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Old 05-15-2010, 12:29 AM
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Originally Posted by anonymously View Post
85,000 editors is the total number of people who have been editors on the project since it started. We operate on a few less than that at any one time this is the official figure from AOL/DMOZ blog
http://blog.dmoz.org/
The talk about corruption has been going on for more than 10 years now, so in terms of scope, the 85,000 figure is probably more relevant.
 
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Old 05-15-2010, 08:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Dan View Post
But for an organisation that size, you'd have to expect a degree of cheating. Anyone that doesn't is living in a fantasy world. The same thing happens in real life in many businesses day in and day out - and no one bats an eyelid.

The important point here is the magnitude of the cheating and how quickly it is caught and rectified.
We have over the years booted some editors that have been found with their hands in the till, but I pointed out what the editor total was about because of the comment you made above and an organisation with an average 7 - 8K editors is a vastly different organisation to control than one with 85K, which is the way you used those figures. Add to that every edit is logged to your name, most editors work in a fairly limited field and touting round local bars and restaurants does not produce much return then one has to advertise ones services and usually online and very often trappable or traceable. Add to that too for an editor to be of much use s/he has to have a fairly large range to edit in and that means years of work to get to that position and i think we have the start of being able to say that any corruption is identified quickly, which is the basis of this thread, and is not something that is significant in sites added for payment.
 
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Old 05-15-2010, 10:17 AM
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I'll find a certain respect for the Open Directory Project only inasmuch as it's been around for a long period of time and that's about it. I don't include it in any of our planned linking/submission/seo strategies, and have openly discouraged clients from even bothering with it for at least the past 5 years .. DMOZ is a non-starter IMO.

There are any number of a million things on the internet that people can be passionate about, and DMOZ can be one of them .. being passionate about something still might not make it any good .. success doesn't happen based soley on passion.

As far as the either real or imagined corruption? .. C'Mon guys, this is the internet, when has there ever been anything on the net that hasn't been touched with a taste of corruption?

As much as I "don't" visit sites that are of no interest to me, I thought it well to revisit DMOZ as a result of reading these posts .. yup .. just as I thought .. a certain respect for DMOZ has hooked me into giving it a few more worthless clicks, as I can very plainly see that it's all about the same crap (or explative of your choice), different day over there.

In the spirit of nonbias, I even clicked on the WebProNews link (one of the biggest email spammers on the net these days) to see if in fact anything might have changed for the good ..

I don't, or won't, expect to see any changes at all over at DMOZ. There are areas on the net that are full of cobwebs, and DMOZ is one of them, what with all of the listings full of sites that haven't been updated since 1999 of businesses that haven't cared about internet presence since 2000 .. yup .. DMOZ .. a real winner, IMO.

One man's garbage is another man's gold, and it appears that the only gold that exists, at least to me, over at DMOZ, is the misguided belief by it's editors that DMOZ is actually worth something.
 
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Old 05-15-2010, 04:04 PM
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Originally Posted by WebshoppeSolutions View Post
One man's garbage is another man's gold, and it appears that the only gold that exists, at least to me, over at DMOZ, is the misguided belief by it's editors that DMOZ is actually worth something.
Strange thing is, no one at DMOZ is bothered what it is worth. We build categories as a hobby. We allow people to use the data if they wish to do so, we did not force Google to use us as their directory, it was their choice. We do not force people to suggest a site, it is their choice. They might believe it is helpful, but frankly I am not interested.

What I think the directory is worth is that for anyone who wants to use categorised material DMOZ provides it. No more no less. I enjoy putting categories together, if that is useful to someone fine, if not I enjoyed putting the category together. I have no interest in any value that listing a site gives to the site, nor have I any interest in what value the site has in terms of PR or whatever. I am grateful that AOL is willing to bankroll my hobby. Tell me where does that fit into your scheme that editors think it is worth something?
 
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Old 05-15-2010, 09:05 PM
WebshoppeSolutions WebshoppeSolutions is offline
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Strange thing is, no one at DMOZ is bothered what it is worth. We build categories as a hobby. We allow people to use the data if they wish to do so, we did not force Google to use us as their directory, it was their choice. We do not force people to suggest a site, it is their choice. They might believe it is helpful, but frankly I am not interested.

What I think the directory is worth is that for anyone who wants to use categorised material DMOZ provides it. No more no less. I enjoy putting categories together, if that is useful to someone fine, if not I enjoyed putting the category together. I have no interest in any value that listing a site gives to the site, nor have I any interest in what value the site has in terms of PR or whatever. I am grateful that AOL is willing to bankroll my hobby. Tell me where does that fit into your scheme that editors think it is worth something?
I used to deal with the snarkiness of DMOZ editors .. I'm sure that there are more than a few in these forums that have experienced the same ..

Never used to be that way though, that is, until Yahoo did the unthinkable and bought Alltheweb, Alta Visita, and others out from under the prying eyes of GoogleBot .. Google was stuck with DMOZ soley after that, and, well, the rest is history. (Google was stuck for seed sites, and "had" to use DMOZ .. it didn't really even have a choice in the matter)

DMOZ is an internet entity who's time has come and gone ..

I can understand the Hobby angle .. we all need something to do with our time, and if cruising the net for links to be placed in a directory is something that's worthwhile to some, then so be it .. but then again still, and on that premise, DMOZ is hardly a newsworthy item.

In the total internet scheme of things, DMOZ, not too unlike AOL, is only mentioned (once in a while) because it has been around so long, and that's about it.
 
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Old 05-16-2010, 07:35 AM
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Originally Posted by WebshoppeSolutions View Post

DMOZ is an internet entity who's time has come and gone ..

I can understand the Hobby angle .. we all need something to do with our time, and if cruising the net for links to be placed in a directory is something that's worthwhile to some, then so be it .. but then again still, and on that premise, DMOZ is hardly a newsworthy item.
How can a hobby I enjoy have come and gone? If I and others want to collect and list sites, what is that to anyone else?

The way others use our data will change, but we have no control over that, neither do we want to have control over it. Nor are we interested. It may or may not get used and that may or may not be what you are trying to say, but as it does not concern us where or how it is used it is no concern to us. DMOZ will be here while people want to spend their spare time collecting and collating sites and at present there are over 7000 people who want to do that, in itself an impressive number.And at present AOL are using their staff to make improvements which will soon come into use, so they seem happy to continue bankrolling the project and that means that my hobby looks secure for some time to come. Join us webshoppesolutions, you never know you might enjoy it.

Incidentally if you come across sites that have moved or don't work and our bots have not found them, there is an update button on each page and we appreciate the public's help to notify them to us in this way so that the web community can help us keep sites up to date.
 
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Old 05-16-2010, 08:18 AM
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Originally Posted by WebshoppeSolutions View Post
DMOZ is an internet entity who's time has come and gone ..
For my , as long as Google values it, I will.
 
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Old 05-16-2010, 07:33 PM
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i read this thread and the links through with quite a bit of interest as i've often thought that the claims of 'corruption' at the open directory were vastly overblown. glad to hear that there is such oversight, it makes sense to me, and transparency is the most important aspect of the whole deal and the method to keep corruption under control or at a minimal level.
hell i live in a third world i mean industrializing country for many years now and well corruption is pretty much a general way of life among many of the elites etc (but so often unproved or reprimanded, and we're not talking $30-50 bucks for a website but public officials walking away and leaving the town treasury without a penny for the new administration; i kid you not) so it would take a lot to shock me about a little corruption here and there at a major world-wide web directory.

I've always liked the op and use if from time to time too. i also think that it's very much an authority website (perhaps one of google's 'seed sites' for determining Trust and Authority) and as such is rather valued by google too. why else would they use the OP if they didn't value it?
i also just did a check on my niche where i live and know pretty well, and compared that to what's in the yahoo directory and the op holds up pretty well but really has had need of a decent editor for a number of years and new fresh material/links, but it even still has a pretty good and representative number of websites of all sorts, i didn't see any obvious glaring 'outliers' there either....so people have done a good job there from what I can see.

Last edited by michaelj72; 05-16-2010 at 07:38 PM.
 
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Old 05-17-2010, 01:13 AM
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i also just did a check on my niche where i live and know pretty well, and compared that to what's in the yahoo directory and the op holds up pretty well but really has had need of a decent editor for a number of years and new fresh material/links, but it even still has a pretty good and representative number of websites of all sorts, i didn't see any obvious glaring 'outliers' there either....so people have done a good job there from what I can see.
Please do apply there is a button at the bottom of most pages, I am sure there is there.
 
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Old 05-17-2010, 01:48 AM
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For my , as long as Google values it, I will.
Google does not value it that much now. However, we'll get a good back-link which is considered valuable in many search engines though!
 
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