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    About DMOZ
    Since 1998, DMOZ has been the largest, most comprehensive human-edited directory of the Web. Supported by AOL, it is constructed and maintained by a passionate, global community of volunteer editors.
    Dec 14th 2007 3:19PM
    Team DMOZ
    As a follow up to our last post and as a chance to continue allowing our editors the chance to share their experiences with the world at large, here is a post that came to us from a fairly new member of the editorial community.

    Unlike the previous post about why folks join, this speaks to a perception of DMOZ/ODP as a group of elitist few or a tribe of warring editors. A popular mis-conception that seems to pop up when whenever DMOZ pops up.

    In fact, what the DMOZ community is...is a team. A collaborative group that partners to produce the data and results that so many people around the planet rely on.

    Read away and let us know what you think.

    -----------------------------------

    Team that is ODP

    I am now three months into my ODP "career" and enjoying it even more than when I started.

    My eyes are still being opened daily about the enormity and complexity of the directory but one thing that has struck me most of all is the fellowship and the "team" nature of it all. The team spirit is obvious in many things that we do and very apparent from all people involved from those in staff to editors.

    I have chosen my words in my last sentence very carefully and for a reason. You will notice that I did not say something like "...very apparent from all people involved from those in staff down to editors" or "very apparent from all people involved from those in all levels".

    The overriding feelings that I get is that we are all in this because we care about the directory. Yes there are different people doing slightly different jobs but the overwhelming care is about the directory and I have met no one that seems only out for their own agenda. Of course there are disagreements about how things should be done, that will happen in any organization which is made up of people from the whole planet, but things are discussed, usually at length, and resolutions are come to.

    Over the last few months I have been seeing things from a slightly different perspective than before I was an editor. I can see that many of the accusations made against the ODP are unfounded and sometimes downright wrong.

    I do feel that some of the accusations come from people who think that the ODP is a "mutually exclusive club for the few" that no ordinary person can join and that the directory is a place that you would not be allowed access to unless you are part of that exclusive club. I must start off by saying that I am just an ordinary person who liked the look of the directory and applied to become an editor. I did not know any editors and I did not have any sites in the directory.

    Anybody can apply to become an editor and as long as you have the skills to do the job then you will be welcomed. I have seen posts from people that have been rejected and are quite upset by this. We are very proud of this directory that we are all helping to build so it is without reservation that I say, the integrity of the directory has to be protected or it would just end up in chaos and would not be an entity worth doing. Some people are better at some things than others. Some people have the right skills for editing, some do not. That is no reflection on them as a person, which is how it is seems to be taken.

    I would be willing to wager a lot of money that they will be capable of doing things that I am not. For instance, I am totally inept and drawing and artwork. Where would we be today without all the wonderful artists in the world. If I applied for a job as an artist, no matter how much I wanted it, I would be rejected. There are also many places within the directory that I could not edit in. The many parts of the directory that are not in the English language are out of bounds for me personally as I cannot speak any languages fluently enough to edit in them. If I applied to edit in these parts of the directory I would be rejected quite obviously.

    There are some people out in Internet land that are vehement ODP haters and no matter what anybody says that will be their attitude. That is their business. I have also seen many folk slagging off the ODP and using unsubstantiated claims to forward their point of view. The ODP team has an official way of dealing with any claims of wrong doing and if substantiated these instances are dealt with both severely and unequivocally.

    I would like to say that if you see anything that does not look right, DO NOT HESITATE to report it and the matter will be investigated. No one person is above ODP.

    I have really enjoyed being part of this team and I would cordially invite all those who would like to be part of it as well to become editors. It is a really rewarding hobby and I would recommend it to anyone. I would also say to those that do not want to become editors but want to participate that your help is also most welcome. Please feel free to submit sites that you find on the Internet and are not listed and as discussed above please do not hesitate to let us know of problems that you find. Together we can make a great directory and the Internet a better place.

    -----------------------

    While this editor has remained nameless, feel free to ping me directly from this site :)

    BBQGrant
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