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Competing against listings which don't follow ODPguidelines.

What can one realistically do?



6:12 pm on Mar 12, 2001 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator skibum is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

When working on promoting a site, for which submission to directories may (initially or permanently) be the only form of promotion, what is one to do when searches on AOL turn up some top site(s) that do not follow directory guidelines, ie.. the title is not that of the site or the business, but the description is partly in the title - hence topping the charts for some choice keywords?

Is it OK to submit a change form, that would simply suggest changing the title of the site to what the title of the site is?

Is it best to Email a resident editor?

Do ya just suck it up, and do the best submision you can and move on?

In general, is there anything that should or could be done when one comes across a site in ODP that doesn't meet guidelines because it's really lacking in content or is just chock full of affiliate programs? Does ODP appreciate feedback that points out such things?

If this question falls under "we are not the ODP site help desk." from the forum charter and is not appropriate here please ax it. I am however just looking for general guidance on how to go about improving the directory while at the same time giving properly listed sites a fair shake at top results.


9:46 pm on Mar 12, 2001 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

All of the above sound reasonable. Emailing one or more higher-level editors is the most likely way to get a site re-reviewed.


10:02 pm on Mar 12, 2001 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Reasonable and tactfully-worded inquiries or requests are not resented by most ODP editors.

Please don't assume that a perceived bias is intentional, as some editors are simply more descriptive than others. Still, we strive to ensure that all sites within a category are treated fairly and equitably. Calling this to the attention of the resident editor would, I think, be appropriate.

If the offending sites are in a category other than your own, the problem almost certainly is a matter of editorial style, something that we don't want to standardize to such a point that we are telling editors what to say in an site description, but if they are in the same category as your own, it's reasonable to ask that they be reviewed, entitled, and described according to the same standard.


10:35 pm on Mar 12, 2001 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator skibum is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member


Editing bias is not on my mind at all. Assuming all other things equal, the title seems to be the most important element for topping AOL. Titles which contain descriptions are frustrating to go up against, because it is ultimately in everyones' best interest to have sites listed accurately, according to guidelines. The way to attempt to match the rank is to try to achieve the same kind of not to spec listing, but that would just create more work for everyone in the long term.

In most cases where this might be spotted, it seems more likely that it is a new editor, or a category w/o an editor that does not get the attention it deserves.

Descriptions of sites are wide open, and must be, to enable editors to be editors. The title of a web site is more clear cut.

The potential for abuse when submitting a change form for the site of another is obvious. I do however think that would be the best way to get the attention of an editor, and if it is just to get the title to be what the actual title of the site is with an explanation attached to the form, is that acceptable, or ethical?


11:53 pm on Mar 12, 2001 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

This is a recurrent problem, for any number of reasons. And yes, the serious editors like to hear about it.

Send polite e-mail (editors are often human too). Give the category name, the URL, and the _current_ title from the listing, so we can find it easily.

Don't expect immediate response--we don't all check our mail daily.

And if you don't get a response from the editor within a week or two, you could e-mail an editor at the highest level (if the problem is in "Arts/Aleatoric_Multimedia/Audiotactile/Zoological/Squealing_Porcupine_Models", then pick an editor of the "Arts/" category.

If you're willing to go to all this trouble to make a better directory, consider applying to edit a category.

And, if nobody else says it,
thanks for trying


1:04 pm on Mar 21, 2001 (gmt 0)

You learn something new everyday - I never thought ALL of the top AOL listings were ODp derived


1:09 pm on Mar 21, 2001 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Welcome to WmW crunchy_1

AOL owns ODP


3:59 pm on Mar 21, 2001 (gmt 0)

Thank you Mackin it's nice to be here.


7:12 am on Mar 22, 2001 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator brett_tabke is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

Well, more specifically: AOL owns Netscape that Owns the ODP. Correct? It still says Netscape on all the ODP stuff doesn't it?


8:11 am on Mar 22, 2001 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator skibum is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Sounds right. AOL-->Netscape-->ODP. Actually not all top AOL results come from ODP. If you can come up with a search for which ODP does not return anything, then INK would step up to the plate. If one can find a few of these with few or no results returned from ODP, then good ranks in Inktomi can really help...IF

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