This week, editor crowbar will provide some background about the role he plays as an editor for the directory.
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Editing is one of several hobbies that I indulge in when I'm not working in my real life business. My business doesn't have or need a website anymore. It was a nice tool at the time, but I found it to be unnecessary. Good service and word of mouth are much more effective.
Let me tell you about my hobbies.
Editing has been a hobby for the last 8 years. I applied out of curiosity - on a whim. After I was accepted, my first thought was "What have I gotten myself into?" The place was huge, the amount of information about editing was mind boggling, and I felt like a flea on a football field with no idea of what to do next.
I soon found out that nobody was going to lead me by the hand or crack a whip, and that I needed to be proactive in learning the ropes, though there were plenty of editors willing to help. All I had to do was ask.
Being accepted as an editor doesn't make you an editor. It is just the starting point to becoming one. It is a hobby. You are a volunteer, and your time is your own so you can proceed at your own pace.
Some editors choose to stay in this first small category, and other editors expand their editing permissions to larger areas as their interests expand, as I have. It's totally up to each editor.
Another hobby I have is water gardening. I knew nothing about it, but it looked pretty cool, so I grabbed a shovel and started digging. This led to editing:
Then somebody mentioned something that sounded interesting to me. I took a look, got hooked on a new time-consuming hobby, and applied for permissions to edit two more categories, which I was granted at:
Of course, I also edit all of New York State and everything else within the United States categories, as part of my hobby.
My point is that editors join the ODP (DMOZ) and stay as a hobby, not as a job. My business is my job, and editing is a pleasant hobby that I do when I have the time, and even then, I have to decide which hobby will get my time and how much of it.
I want to find really interesting and helpful sites for other water gardeners and other World of Warcraft players, and I use multiple resources to do this. Sometimes I look through the suggested sites submitted by the public; other times, I follow the links found on existing listings or do a search for specific terminology using search engines.
Some users think that our job as editors is to list every suggested site; however, this is not the case. We aren't a listing service. Our goal is to build useful categories with unique content for the benefit of information-seekers. We welcome high-quality, relevant site suggestions that provide real value to information seekers, but we don't guarantee placement of any site in the directory. The ODP is not a business, but an organization of volunteers editing in areas that are of interest to them, and giving away the results freely, no charge. We do not provide a service to site suggesters, we build categories for people looking for information.
The difference between a search engine and a directory like the ODP might be that a search engine can find specific information very quickly, but a directory can give you a spreadsheet of all the information laid out to choose from - a broader view of the topic.
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Edited by windharp, 27 May 2009 - 10:41 AM.
fixing a formatting mistake