25 July 2005

What's that smell?

Somebody asked me this morning "why isn't Travel-Lists in the Open Directory (dmoz)?"

No idea.
(I had to check. They're right. It still isn't)

It is irritating that competitors like Travel-Quest are in dmoz (excellent site. It should be in!) and less worthy sites, but they got in before internet growth began to outpace dmoz's ability to map it.

I submitted Travel-lists when we launched two years ago, which I think was just the point at which the rot began to set in. Back then - when I used to check these things - the editor of the travel directories category used to update once a month, adding & removing a total of around 5 sites each time. I don't know when it started to decay but last time I looked, which I think was last month (June) I noticed it had been touched since March. It has now (the last update says 16 July) but it doesn't look very different to me.

More to the point, I've seen numerous comments in articles and on forums over the last year talking about dmoz's shortcomings and how its importance as a source is being downgraded by some of the search engines that use it.

There's an air of malaise about it now. Even the dmoz zealots who patrol industry forums defending it from anyone who dares criticise it, seem to do so with less rottweiler energy these days. (Wonder if they'll sniff this blog out?!)

Hardly surprising. Editing a directory is bloody boring hard work - I know. Now that the honeymoon period is over it can't be easy to go on and on doing it for love and no money.

Pity, because no matter how out-of-date/non-comprehensive it gets, Dmoz is still the 'best show in town'. But I fear Dmoz is beginning to smell funny, and things usually smell funny when they are dead.

1 comment:

KC said...

You're being a little unfair. You're involved in what I guess to be a one-man, for-profit operation. DMOZ is edited by a bunch of decentralized ants, each with no financial reason to stay on the cutting edge of the world's website collection. In any case, take note that your blog entry has been noticed.