| This 41 message thread spans 2 pages: 41 (  2 ) > > || |
|DMOZ Submit / Resubmit / Submit Again Issue Revisited - Again|
When is Enough ENOUGH?
System: The following 13 messages were cut out of thread at: http://www.webmasterworld.com/directories/3460327.htm [webmasterworld.com] by webwork - 8:56 am on Sep. 29, 2007 (utc -5)
That whole dont resubmit thing is 100% not user friendly! DMOZ provides absolutely no status info, and moreover they're notoriously understaffed and some sections are known to know even be managed at all for months at a time. Moreover, does anyone recall the outage from about a year ago when they lost a ton of data?
So when I submit and get no response ... how the heck could I possibly feel good about just leaving it and knowing it will be handled in the order received? It is a ridiculous notion!
Suggestions AREN'T handled in the order received.
If it is eligible for listing, then it will eventually be listed. Resubmitting again while it is waiting means it is now tagged as a recent submission, not as one that has been waiting for a long time. That doesn't help you or the editors, especially an editor who decides to go and process "old" submissions first.
If it has already been rejected as unlistable, then editors don't ever want to have to review it again. That is, unless the site is radically different (better!) in scope and content, and a long time (like more than a year) has passed since the last review. If you keep resubmitting it at short intervals, then you will soon gain a reputation as a "pest" and all your future stuff is then dumped without being considered at all. This works the same way that this forum treats a new poster that posts several spams in a row.
If it has actually been reviewed and is already listed, then do not submit again. You are very likely not going to get any additional listings. In general, don't even try. However, if there is a gross error in the description of the site you might want to submit an update request. If that request is just to get more keywords in the entry then it will certainly be rejected.
Editors set up a forum, and for 3 years tried telling webmasters some information about their listings. After more than 30 000 attempts the plug was pulled. This was because it was realised there is nothing that editors can tell a reputable submitter that could help their site be listed any quicker, but there is plenty of information that a spammer would like to know in order to be able to try spam the ODP better next time.
The big issue I've run into is apparently you're not suppose to submit your site to multiple categories. But then, if its not listable in one category and that's where I first submitted it, is it now flagged globally as unlistable? Moreover, am I suppose to now NOT resubmit it to those other categories that someone might find it more applicable for?
If anyone in DMOZ is listening - the whole concept is just so f**'ed up!
Frankly I love the idea that dmoz SHOULD use a nofollow tag on links. Currently dmoz has way too much pull on search rankings, and clearly the system is flawed, biased, and corrupt.
One could argue these user policies are necessary to deal with spam. I would argue the spam wouldn't be an issue if you used nofollow tags. Then, dmoz has no search rankings pull for anyone and this whole issue just goes away. Then I don't have to give a sh** if dmoz is screwed up or doesn't review my site for whatever reason; its there loss at that point (as it should be) ... not mine!
>> if its not listable in one category and that's where I first submitted it, is it now flagged globally as unlistable? <<
Where did that crazy logic come from?
If you submit a site and the category isn't quite right, the editor can send it over to the other category. If the editor has editing privileges in the target category, then the site gets listed immediately. If the editor hasn't got editing rights in the target, then another editor will need to "publish" the listing there. However, before sending the entry over, it is likely that the first editor will have made the title and description directory compliant, and that will make the listing more noticable to that second editor, hastening the listing on.
|If you submit a site and the category isn't quite right, the editor can send it over to the other category. If the editor has editing privileges in the target category, then the site gets listed immediately. |
Not true in all cases by a long way. Moving a site to a carefully considered alternative category is also a good way of ensuring some sites are queued ad infinitum.
It's a shame DMOZ is manipulated in this way because it is an amazing resource that could offer so much more.
> "Where did that crazy logic come from?"
Well, it says clearly on DMOZ not to submit the same URL to multiple categories. And someone just above in the thread said sites are branded as "unlistable" if they are rejected. So, just putting 2+2 together, you know? Im glad to hear that's not the case however, if you're certain that it is not.
>Moreover, am I suppose to now NOT resubmit it to those other categories that someone might find it more applicable for?
Um, exactly. We have a name for someone who goes around suggesting his site to any categories that he thinks someone might think it applicable for. It's "shotgun spammer."
However: remember, there IS in the submittal policy something about resubmitting (once). Nothing says the resubmittal has to be in the same category.
The reasonable way of adding THOSE twos and twos together?
Well, suppose, after suggesting a site and after more consideration, you change your mind about what the One-True-Category is for the site? Use your one resubmittal to go to the better category. And if you're right, the editor will appreciate it. And if you're wrong, the editor really won't mind.
But: suggesting to three or four categories? Depending on circumstances, you may appear to be, um, conforming to a model of behavior characteristic of spammers.... And while 99% of once-rejected sites are unlistable, the chances of 20-times-rejected sites being listable is infinitesimal, and negligable.
Or, to look at it the other way around, a barely-LISTABLE site suggested, say, 20 times has a significantly higher chance of being accidentally rejected permanently. And that's OK. It's good for editors to reward webmasters who avoid the more ostentatious forms of discourtesy.
>I would argue the spam wouldn't be an issue if you used nofollow tags.
I can't imagine why anyone would believe that. Stupid spammers would keep spamming, because they were still using e-books they bought in 1999 and didn't know any better. Less stupid spammers would keep spamming because they knew that even though dmoz.org used nofollow, AOL and Google didn't. And the more clever spammers would keep spamming because they realize that things change, and who knows what might start working tomorrow?
I can't imagine any spammer stupid enough to stop spamming just because dmoz.org used nofollow, but yet bright enough to NOTICE dmoz.org used nofollow and realize what nofollow meant.
The big issue I've run into is apparently you're not suppose to submit your site to multiple categories. But then, if its not listable in one category and that's where I first submitted it, is it now flagged globally as unlistable?
Absolutely not true, it simply means that the editor of that particular category did not believe your website was themed to that topic correctly. Likely they sent the website review over to another editor at another topic.
The bottom line in DMOZ, is that they are looking for unique and interesting websites, not product / information sites that 'seem' to look a little nicer than the last product website but offer nothing new to the end user.
Offer something truly unique on your website, something others do not that is useful, submit to the best category you can that represents you, and be patient.
|Then, DMOZ has no search rankings pull for anyone and this whole issue just goes away. |
What exactly is the issue? That website X was not listed fast enough? :)
This thread is getting silly. It seems several people here seem to believe they absolutely know what is absolutely clear ... and yet I see several of thse sorts of posts directly contradicting each other. ;-)
Well bottom line - if there is this much confusion then to anyone willing to consider the issue - it suggests there's a problem with the model, no? I mean, when we start talking about menutia points in the find print of the disclaimer etc ... how is that user friendly for the avg (or even the intermediate) webmaster who is just looking to promote their website. Someone who doesn't understand how all this is working but has a lot of ground to cover will not read the terms (in most cases) ... they'll just submit in all categories they think it might possibly be accepted to. Then when its not accepted a month later, they will submit it again. How many people who have a website to promote are really going to sit around studying these fine points of the DMOZ world?
So bottom line message to DMOZ in my mind should be: SOS - you have a serious usability problem! The blog and press relations are an excellent step forward ... but please do not stop there! :)
>> submit in all categories they think it might possibly be accepted to. Then when its not accepted a month later, they will submit it again. How many people who have a website to promote are really going to sit around studying these fine points of the DMOZ world? <<
We call those sots of people "spammers", though that doesn't really apply until it is quite a few submissions in quite a few categories. They are making extra work for editors.
However, editors would not go out of their way to penalise a site that had submitted in just several categories, but there is a danger that in deleting the extra submissions that all of them get deleted by accident.
The model is very simple. It just seems that people deliberately go out of their way to misunderstand it. We think that it works in the way common sense would dictate.
Would you come to webmasterworld and post the same question in 10 different categories and think that was reasonable behaviour? The same applies over there, too.
> "The model is very simple. It just seems that people deliberately go out of their way to misunderstand it."
Wow - now *that* is a classic quote I'll have to use next time I want to demonstrate how someone can refuse to see the other side of an argument! :)
>how is that user friendly for the avg (or even the intermediate) webmaster who is just looking to promote their website.
For the avg, or the intermediate (or "middle-of-the-herd" or "run-of-the-mill" or "mediocre" or "median" or ... check out a Thesaurus if you need more synonyms for "ordinary") webmaster?
To them it's, um, flat not friendly at all. At best, ideally, it is indifferent to insignificant contacts. But it actively, positively leans over backward to resist and even counterbalance anything that gives the appearance of any form of pressure.
The extreme example is to threaten a lawsuit, physically stalk an editor, or repeated use of an automatic shotgun submittal program. And after that, we almost don't care if the site is the sole source for the Online Encyclopedia Galactica and the complete libraries of Alexandria, Gordium, Tikal, Anghor Wat, Lhasa, Berlin, Nineveh, and antediluvian Erech. It's a matter of personal protection of the editors that no further contact of any kind be _permitted_.
For less extreme examples, an editor may just "vacuum" the suggestion pools to clean up the mess -- future prejudice to that SEO and all his works, but not necessarily to the website itself. For mild examples, the editor might just spend a few minutes playing whack-a-mole, then go about some useful business.
And ... suppose a webmaster is so strictly assiduous about the guidelines, that he seems like a normal, honest, polite surfer? Then ... he'll be treated like a normal, polite, honest surfer: that is, his suggestions will be routed to the volunteers who are most likely to value them, then considered for all they're worth--including the possibility of multiple listings, deeplinks, keystones for new categories, etc., etc.
> "his suggestions will be routed to the volunteers who are most likely to value them, then considered for all they're worth"
Sadly its simply not reality in my experience, sorry to say.
Well, obviously, how long you wait for that to happen, depends on how many public-spirited people in the world share your interests.
I've tried submitting my niche authority site a few times under different categories spanning a few years' time. Each time I never hear back. To me that's the problem. Hell, I'd be happy if I got an e-mail 6 months after I submitted saying anything (good or bad). But if I wait a year, of course I'm going to resubmit. It's frustrating and it's too bad DMOZ counts for anything in Google's eyes. It's a has-been and clearly there's a lot of issues that need to be resolved if/before it can be "good" again. My view on DMOZ is not high anymore... I've submitted to be an editor in a few different categories where I have knowledge but I was denied. I tried to help. So what am I to do? Give up.... yes, I pretty much have.
>Each time I never hear back. To me that's the problem.
But how is that a problem?
What can you not do with your website until you hear back from someone? It's your website: whatever you want to do with it, you can do now.
Again - if the editor wanted to contact a person who submitted a site - they could - but it is a really bad idea for an editor to contact the owner of a website - because they aren't always that nice and will try to persuade, convince or even buy their way in - and you will have to spend hours to try to explain to them what is and what isn't - time which could be better spent on alot of other things. Seriously.
Other times the site just wasn't good enough to get in - and didn't supply something new or original to the category - so it was just deleted and rejected with a note on why .. (yes, there's notes on everything - for other people in dmoz to look at - review of the reviewer you know and for when people resign from the category and another editor takes over - it makes it easier to see what has been done and what hasn't)
If the editor is in doubt - it's usually left in unreviewed - it's still there you know - just not in the directory results and usually looked at by other people at some point who has a more neutral standpoint - or its taken to editors in categories above, or its discussed in one of the forums what to do with it - sometimes sites are left in unreviewed to give them some time to develop more usefull content for the users... again, it's not black/white -
When it is a good resource on the topic - the sometimes long submission time before its added also has its advantages you know - people can develop more on their site, become an even better resource.. again, it's not a directory which is suited for business opportunities - when a site is reviewed - an editor goes to the website, and reads the content and look at it and makes an estimate of its value compared to the directory he/she is editing and compare with other websites in the same category - which they also looked at - you know... like any editor would do with his resources - they don't just send a spider out and let it handle it)
|Other times the site just wasn't good enough to get in - and didn't supply something new or original to the category |
Let's look at an example of 'good enough' in a little more detail because it partially depends upon the website's purpose.
Ahn individual bed and breakfast website will be listed in its locality without any problem - provided that it works and isn't just a visiting card of course. It doesn't have to be pretty; it just has to say what it is, where it is and not be unduly user hostile. Prices and a photo gallery are nice but not essential.
OTOH, a bed and breakfast directory for a locality will be judged by its context. If we already have 23 B&Bs listed there, a directory with only five B&Bs is plainly useless.
Also, if we already have 3 good B&B directories listed there, why would we need another? If it's significantly better, we'll list it but otherwise probably not.
Quite a few editors use Firefox because - well, it's just a better browser and has several very useful addons. It's a shame that so many web developers only check their sites in IE. If a site won't work in FF, I'll try it in IE and, in a perfect world, so will other editors. I can't guarantee that all do though.
|OTOH, a bed and breakfast directory for a locality will be judged by its context. If we already have 23 B&Bs listed there, a directory with only five B&Bs is plainly useless. |
There was advice some time ago that directories should not be listed at all unless they are in a directory category; instead the websites within the directory should be reviewed and those suitable added. I agree with this entirely and suspect that some editors need to be reminded of this when they include meta-sites, site-review blogs and and similar directories.
Reading through this thread a couple of things come to mind.
>Resubmitting again while it is waiting means it is now tagged as a recent submission, not as one that has been waiting for a long time.
Wouldn't that leave the door open for competitors to keep submitting a competing site to keep it at the end of the submission list? Are there protocols in place to guard against this?
>already been rejected as unlistable, ~ keep resubmitting it ~ gain a reputation as a "pest" ~ future stuff ~ dumped without being considered at all.
Again, would this not leave the door open for competitors to bury a suite of site owned by the same person, some of which may be quite eligible, but resubmitting a known unlistable site? Are there any protocols in place to guard against this?
>>Resubmitting again while it is waiting means it is now tagged as a recent submission, not as one that has been waiting for a long time.
>Wouldn't that leave the door open for competitors to keep submitting a competing site to keep it at the end of the submission list? Are there protocols in place to guard against this?
No. You see, editors don't EVER _have_ to look at suggestions in any order.
>>already been rejected as unlistable, ~ keep resubmitting it ~ gain a reputation as a "pest" ~ future stuff ~ dumped without being considered at all.
>Again, would this not leave the door open for competitors to bury a suite of site owned by the same person, some of which may be quite eligible, but resubmitting a known unlistable site? Are there any protocols in place to guard against this?
I don't know why you'd want to stuff your OWN reputation as a site submitter, just on the off-chance that an editor will look for unsuggested but unlistable sites "similar to" a suggested site, AND won't notice the other sites are actually listable, AND will take the time to document that they are unlistable. But if that's what you want to do, I'm not going to set up a protocol to stop you.
Again - if you want to bury your competitor some way and submit their sites to the directory a thousand times under different names, descriptions and so on - please go ahead - it will be reviewed and edited and crosschecked on the directory like anything else. But perhaps Dmoz should do the wiki trick and log all ip adresses on submissions. Could be fun ;)
A few things which is usually done with a listing: Is the link already listed in the directory? - if yes - where? - furthermore - is the submission received relevant to the category i'm editing or does it perhaps belong in a more general category or a sub category? Should I contact the other editors of the other categories and discuss it with them if that is the case and suggest the website in question to be moved to a more general category and the other links removed - again... the bliss of bureaucracy.. there's alot of options.
Please remember, DMOZ is not a competitive environment - it's a cooperative and its about providing some good resources to the visitors of DMOZ and users of it (yes, there's users, you know) - and if a site is worth having in the directory - it'll be added. What are you going to do with the submissions again? Add a good resource? Please do :) Perhaps the B2B site won't be listed in the general category, perhaps another category which fits the purpose of it more .. or a sub category - again - it's harder to get a website listed in the top level categories because the criterias for listing them there are more.. general... but that's for the editors to decide, not you or your competitor. Think it's a try at the "Neutral point of view" - like a judge in a football game, right? :)
|Also, if we already have 3 good B&B directories listed there, why would we need another? If it's significantly better, we'll list it but otherwise probably not. |
Is there a standard directory wide policy on this?
Or is it up to each editor to decide what he personally feels would be an "optimum number" of existing similar sites after which point any similar later sites would be excluded?
The standard policy is "unique content." For each site, the question is "what information does this site add?"
And it's not a "yes-or-no" question -- it is a gradient. Some sites (and, yes, directories are particularly prone to this) subtract from the sum of human knowledge merely by existing. A directory has to be fairly good just to be totally worthless. (Few ever get that good: most remain an intellectual and economic drag on the internet.)
Here's a way of quantifying a directory site's value. Imagine a user, looking at all the BETTER sites on the internet first. (1) What are the chances of him NOT finding what he wants in any of them? (pretty small?) (2) What are the chances of him perservering to look for the information here despite not finding it online elsewhere? (not so great?) And what are the chances of him finding what he wants in the site being reviewed? (pretty small?) Multiply them together. (VERY small? infinitesimal? negligable?)
Now compare that value (and it's likely to be tiny) with the chances that the user looking at this site (and failing to find his content) will exhaust his patience and cause him to quit looking: and thus not find his content when he COULD have found it, if this site had only died first.
And remember that volunteers place a very high value on their own time. You can't keep paying them to do scutwork or busywork. You have to show them they're being productive. You have to let them be as productive as they can--and here, that means not wasting time looking for lumps of coal in old slagpiles. It means editors will naturally focus on where they can make a difference. And sites that seem to be nothing more than yet more "mee, too" "resources" are therefore going to be neglected, in facor of work that builds value for users.
All of this is most certainly fuzzy logic. Different editors have different boredom tolerances (and this is a good thing, this difference is what makes a community function!). So yes, one editor could let "B&B directories" categories rot forever. Another pokes around once or twice a year to see if anything really new has come along. Another brings his Hoover vacuum/Black and Decker Blender into the category, just to enjoy the feeling of cleaning up the worst of the mess (so editor #2 will be more likely to find something useful when he comes back next year.) So you can't draw a hard-and-fast rule. You'd check out the content already listed--the number and quality of sites. You check out the content not listed--the number and quality. And you'd ask what's good for the users.
Certainly, two or three good competitors is a good thing. And equally certainly, fifty "comparative shopping" book shopping sites for a half-dozen real bookstores, is a most evil, pernicious, and deplorable condition. Visible (and identifiable) uniqueness--in authoritativeness, perspective, comprehensiveness, kinds of useful information,--three or four of these conjoined would tilt the scales far towards a listing. Lack of two or three of them would tilt the scales far the other way.
I've said this before, and I believe it: aiming to be the second-worst directory listed in a category is doomed to failure: after all, the worst directory will probably disappear next time the category gets extensive work anyway. Aiming to be the average directory, is doomed to failure--there's an average site already listed. Aiming to be the best, and almost succeeding, is the only reliable way of getting a listing.
The fairness issue usually arises here. But it ought not to. What we all want to do is encourage new, different forms of content--by focusing effort on finding that, rather than no pilpulistic evaluation of what are, after all, cookie-cutter sites. And, in any case, all that matters is being fair to the users who don't want to sift through a dozen directories to sift through a dozen different random samples of the actual data set. If we can do that, we've accomplished something.
As a regular user of dmoz (yes, it's my start page - rarely go anywhere else to look for anything which interests me, I already got my 40 bookmarks and regular websites to visit) - i'll have to add ... that if i'm looking for a good site about some topic which I suddenly have an urge to know more about - wether it's general information or very specific information - dmoz usually has some good resources listed - it'll take a few minutes to find and figure out what site is suited for my purpose - but it's almost always there.
Assume that I was looking for something general about ... I don't know .... goldfish ... I don't really need fifty results to confuse me to start with or a number which states "534.054.543 websites found" - I just want to get to a good website about goldfish. I need three or five options at max. I go there, get what I want and it's like the coolest sites about goldfish around...
Two months later.. and i'm just like really into goldfish now - it's like the coolest thing in the world, totally amazing, awesome over the top. But this time I want to know about this really rare and specific kind of goldfish which is like .. that's just .. insane you know.. so I look for two minutes more - and deeper into the category structure i'm again presented with perhaps five good results about this really special kind of goldfish.. I go there..to all five of the listed sites and everything is so cool and yay - I found out some really hefty stuff about this specific kind of goldfish and i'm still happy and I can go watch my aquarium again and go on with my life and I just love the internet.
That's what I want, as a rather plain user - to be happy and get what I want without having a million options served to me and have to sort through fifty irrelevant and obscure results before I even smile the first time. That's what dmoz is about - people do the work of sorting it all for me and try to be fair - not that they're always that - but they try and it works for me - and that's pretty much how it works.
What did that have to do with your original post? - You didn't get listed immediately or ever because? ... they didn't want to confuse me and make me unhappy, and sad and never know anything about goldfish =(
When you start out with the directory you most likely choose a category you know inside out because it’s probably your passion or where you live. As you progress further you begin to cover categories which include subjects of which you inevitably no longer know to such depth.
Some categories are very broad and often companies specialize in specific areas and whilst may appear similar to the non specialist eye they are in fact catering to wholly different market segments. By not listing these sites because “we already have some” the editor is damaging the usefulness of the directory.
More worryingly there are several examples in the directory where small web based start ups appear higher up the directory tree and (therefore more prominently) simply because they appear to be a better category match or simply there because they are ‘alternative’. There is no way these small web based entities could ever hope to offer the service level, security, and guarantees of the more traditional companies many of which are excluded on the grounds that their natural categories below are already “covered”.
Edited: Reason - Sorry Jim - bad example
[edited by: gpmgroup at 2:04 pm (utc) on Oct. 3, 2007]
|Using jimnoble’s B&B site example where he feels 3 B&B should be enough. |
I actually said
(in a locality).
|if we already have 3 good B&B directories listed there, why would we need another? |
It would be good if you could correct your misunderstanding :).
>More worryingly there are several examples in the directory where small web based start ups appear higher up the directory tree and (therefore more prominently) simply because they appear to be a better category match or simply there because they are ‘alternative’.
>There is no way these small web based entities could ever hope to offer the service level, security, and guarantees of the more traditional companies many of which are excluded on the grounds that their natural categories below are already “covered”.
No company is excluded based on the fact that its natural category is covered. Every businessperson (or organized group of businesspersons) has an inalienable source of unique information: the facts about his own identity and his own activities (whether for-profit or not.)
It's just that some businesses aren't listed at all. (MLM agents, web traffic drivers, etc.) So talking about "what web-based businesses can or can't do" doesn't matter. Considered as business sites, they aren't lited at all. ever.
However, engaging in a web-based business doesn't disqualify someone from having a listable personal site -- containing the usual personal things: what are _you_, what do _you_ know, what happened to _you_, etc. (And a personal site isn't precluded from advertising--your own or someone else's. It just can't be the main point of the site.)
| This 41 message thread spans 2 pages: 41 (  2 ) > > |