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E-Marketing Performance Blog


MSN has released support for a new meta tag allowing webmasters to opt out of having MSN usingODP (a.k.a. DMOZ) descriptions in their search results. This is outstanding!

What has bothered the webmasters previously is that when search engines preferred search result descriptions from dmoz.org, they did not empower webmasters to opt-out of those descriptions. This can be especially annoying if the descriptions from dmoz.org are outdated, or just plain inaccurate.

No only are the human-edited descriptions incorrect quite often, but many have reported of editor abuse within DMOZ, where editors actually run sites for the categories they edit and therefore give competing sites poor or misleading descriptions or titles. I don’t have any personal evidence of this but I do know that once you’re in DMOZ, getting a correction is near impossible.

Even if DMOZ was a perfectly run directory with perfect titles and descriptions, this move by MSN would still be a good one. Most of the time I can create a better description for a site than a directory editor can. If you don’t like the editors version, you can simply opt-out.

Let’s hope Google follows suite. Yahoo needs to do the same and do one better, providing a tag so you can opt out of the Yahoo Directory titles being used in their search results!

Stoney G deGeyter

Stoney deGeyter is the author of The Best Damn Web Marketing Checklist, Period!. He is the founder and CEO of Pole Position Marketing, a web presence optimization firm whose pit crew has been velocitizing websites since 1998. In his free time Stoney gets involved in community services and ministries with his “bride enjoy” and his children. Read Stoney’s full bio.

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