beren - 5:49 pm on May 31, 2011 (gmt 0)
I remember back when I cared about DMOZ that many of their editors derived apparent psychic pay from their positions. Yeah, there was no money, but they were proud of their status as guardians of the Internet against unscrupulous spammers. The hierarchy seemed a natural development of a group of a particular kind of nerd who enjoyed little status in the real world, and so played up the importance of status in DMOZ world - World of Warcraft with all its levels is based on the same drive for status.
The old searchengineforums.com, when their founder Jim was alive, even had a special rule against saying anything bad about ODP. You could criticize Yahoo, Google, etc all day, but ODP was off-limits because the forums were lucky enough to have meta-editors around to answer questions.