Please don't be insulting.
You definitely have some funny ideas about the definition of directories as having a human editor doesn't mean you have to take all control away from members nor relinquish all control to members.
There is that concept of the "queued items pending review"...
Say for instance you added a LOCAL index to your directory and just wanted to give members that are virtual only, something hard to always determine in my niche, the ability to opt-out of the local listings, how else would you let them do this without email contact?
Lot's of other examples but it's not worth arguing about what works.
OK, you must've missed these fine points:
A. It was built when only directories existed, no search engines, and protecting your data from your competitors was a primary objective.
B. Scrapers are a bigger threat than ever, back to that protecting your data thing.
C. It's not designed to pass Google PR, if you want PR you need to go elsewhere, I'm not a PR broker. Besides, I never said I didn't expose those links to Google, I said I won't let Google crawl thru the redirect code.
That's probably why it's so popular and #1 rated in it's field for 10 years since it has absolutely zero value.
As a matter of fact, almost 1,000 new submissions a month and traffic increased 150K visitors over the last 3 months so it must really suck.
Not every online business was built around a SEARCH ENGINE or for Google PR purposes, but some people just don't seem to get that. As a matter of fact, some directories thrive simply because search engines (and other directories) are inadequate for their niche and the tens of thousands of sites competing for the top spots simply cannot rank and the few directories that do rank in those spots provide them all of their traffic.
I've actually seen a few log statistics pages of my members that shows my web site sends some of them over 90% of their traffic.
Ever had a large corporation hand you a $30K check for a 3 month ad campaign?
No value whatsoever, none, I should just go out of business.