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Google takes a copy of it whenever they feel like it, sometimes weeks, sometimes months apart.
Once they have a copy, they usually get the information live within a week or two.
There are some bugs in their system such that they do not manage to update all categories with the new data supplied.
Why would they consider this inappropriate? (Assuming the category was valid for your site.)
I've been waiting 6 months to be included in a section that I now believe doesn't have an editor. My site would be appropriate for several categories but I only submitted once and hoped that whoever reviewed my site would recognize this and list my site in the other categories. (I'm not holding my breath.)
If it's a shopping or business site, it's unlikely to be listed more than once (twice if it is a brick-and-mortar store in a real location, as mentioned above.) But if it's a rich-content informational site, like a museum or something, you can always make a bracketed suggestion to consider the site for deeplinking when you submit it, or even send email to the editor mentioning it. I don't always agree with submitters about whether or not their site is really rich-content or not (it's amazing how many Adsense directories seem to think they're in the same class as the Smithsonian Institute,) but I never mind the possibility being called to my attention.
I believe I submitted to the best category for my site so I'll just hang tight and try not to worry about it.
I've tried to build a unique. content-rich site with no adsense or nonsense and, hopefully, the editor for my category will recognize this.
I know it's been said before, but it would be nice if they had a standard Yes/NO email they would send out after they review your site.
At this point, I don't know if they've seen my site yet or not.
I think the consensus as to the reason is that this is too much information for the scammers and spammers ... if they know that their attempt to scam and spam is detected, they would immediatly try again with a different approach ... better to keep them guessing if their approach/tactics has been detected. Its simply a matter of the idiots ruining for the legitimate.
Well, that, but the other side of the coin is that it is too little information for anyone else. "Yes" is absolutely no-information, since it's visible to the world. And theoretically, that is all that should happen to non-spammers-and-scammers.
What happens when this conceptual model breaks down? Well, yes, stuff falls through the cracks. But (for the ODP as for all imaginable indexing schemes) there are numerous cracks: and this is in my experience of all named cracks one of the most miniscule.
That's in MY experience, of course. If your experience is based one or a handful of site suggestions and no inside information), it will obviously differ. Does it just come down to my fantasy against yours?
There is a way, without years of editing, for anyone to see the editor's experience. For a couple of years, we ran a forum for site suggestion status: that's closed now, but the posts are archived. Anyone can read a few thousand posts there, and get a fairly reasonable sampling of (1) the actual pattern of submittals, (2) what actually happens to them.
The editors' consensus was, statuses weren't worth the trouble. (And for that matter, most of the submitters seemed to agree.)
But even before the experiment, some editors and administrators thought statuses weren't a good idea. Others thought they were. We tried it. The minds that got changed by the actual facts were of the folk who thought they were a good idea.
That's how change happens at the ODP. The people who think innovation is a good idea, try it. Everyone watches what happens to them.
I can definitely see your points... especially about the spammers.
I've started a forum on my site and enforcing the anti-spamming rules hurts my legitimate posters more than the spammers by limiting their ability to share good resources with other members. But what else can you do? Just as with this forum, if you allow URL's, the dirtbags will flood the place with junk posts.
(Give them an inch, they take a mile.)
I'm going to go check out the odp forum archives if I can find it. (Don't remember seeing a link to a forum.) Might be interesting reading to see what the editors were discussing.