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It's misleading, it's untrue, and it's no basis to judge the number of categories with no active editor.
The message is slowly being changed to something along the lines of "volunteer to edit this category".
That's less misleading....It doesn't mean "this cat has no editor" it means "this catesgory could do with more editors". That's true of any category -- any one can apply to edit any category whether it has editor names listed or not.
From our point of view it's more like "give your home address to the Orcs of Sauron?"
Sure, one orc may not pass it back to the Dark Lord, but if you give it to a score of them, experience says you'll have Uruk-Hai disembowelling your pets in the front garden before the next new moon. (Seriously: this is painfully close to literally true. Stalking and physical harassment have occurred.)
This applies especially and particularly for rejected submittals, of course.
For accepted submittals, there's no point -- they've helped us as much as they could, we've done what we can for them, and what we did will be published soon enough anyway. Which would you rather we do -- double the time you spend waiting for a listing, or waste half of our editing time boasting about the sites we add?
For exceptionally good sites, I sometimes communicate with the author: not to say "thank you" or "no thanks" for the site, but to suggest how they might submit future deeplinks (in other words, to try to get them to help us by submitting deeplinks effectively.)
So: If you just want to know why your last spam got rejected so you'll know how to better conceal your affiliate status in your next fly-by-night site: sorry, the editor will more likely call out the rangers than respond. (And yes, we'll stalk a band of orcs through miles of trackless forest to keep the editors from anything that they perceive as harassment.) If you want an editor to communicate with you, then provide the kind of communication he wants _more_ of, not the kind he'd rather never have seen at all.
This does leave a hole: what happens to the sites that get rejected by mistake? (I estimate there are several such mistakes out of every thousand sites submitted.) And the answer is: they get lost. But of all the various kind of wastages that the ODP procedures permit, this is surely one of the smallest: it is inconceivable that major changes in ODP procedure will be made to address this insignificant issue. If the problem is that orcs are killing the couriers, we are going to expand the ranger companies, not the courier service.