Is DMOZ still alive


What is DMOZ?

DMOZ was a freely accessible Internet directory edited by volunteer editors, also known as the Open Directory Project (ODP). It cataloged web addresses and saw itself as a comprehensive catalog of the Internet. The links were published as open content in thematically sorted categories as well as sorted by country and region and provided with a brief description of the linked website. Both the entry of websites in the directory and the use of data by Internet users were possible free of charge. DMOZ was available in 60 languages. The directory was discontinued on March 17, 2017.


The Open Directory Project was launched in 1998 under the then name Gnuhoo (later Newhoo), which was bought by Netscape a short time after its inception, which was itself bought by AOL a little later. Thereupon the Open Directory Project was operated by AOL together with the merger partner Time Warner under the name DMOZ, (derived from

The Open Directory Project was founded on the one hand with the aim of making content from the Internet more easily and in particular freely accessible for Internet users, i.e. without charging a fee, and on the other hand with a view to the partly inadequate quality and topicality of other directories on the Internet .

In the last few years of its existence, the Open Directory itself has received criticism due to the fact that its directory is not up to date. The background to this was that there were not enough editors available in many categories in order to be able to include the variety of websites, which are emerging ever faster in today's Internet age, in the directory and to be able to update the categories. Sometimes very long processing times had to be accepted.


An entry at DMOZ requires prior registration. The background to this was that a website proposed for the Open Directory Project was examined by editors before it was entered in the directory. This was to ensure the high quality standard of the Open Directory Project. A guideline for registration was available at, listing all the regulations regarding registration. This contained some requirements and regulations with regard to the website to be registered. For example, it was forbidden to register mirror pages (mirrors), websites with identical or similar content, websites with illegal content, or websites that largely consisted of partner links.

An important step was also the selection of the appropriate category for the website to be registered. This was done by the user himself. However, DMOZ reserved the right to refuse registration if an inappropriate or irrelevant category was selected. Via the link "Suggest a URL", after selecting the category, the user was taken to the registration form, which, among other things, required a brief description of the website to be registered. After the registration, an editor from the Open Directory Project examined the registered website and decided whether it should be included in the directory. This process could take several weeks. There was no entitlement to registration.

Use of DMOZ data by Google

Google often used the data from the Open Directory Project to display the snippets in its search index. This was particularly true if no usable data was made available on the respective website. In order to prevent that either only Google or generally all search engines use the data from the Open Directory Project, a corresponding meta tag could be stored in the source code.

SEO relevance

While an entry on DMOZ used to have a great influence on the ranking on Google, the importance of backlinks generated via the web directory has been controversial among SEOs in recent years. Google itself emphasized that a link from DMOZ is fundamentally no more important than links from other sources.

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