|4 May 2000
I've spent most of my evening playing around on the web with a new service called Zeal. It's a search-engine PLUS -- which more precisely stated means, it is a search engine site that is backed by user reviews and ratings of sites, making it more of a search site/community. Currently, it's in "preview" mode. I discovered it quite by accident, when one of the administrators emailed me that she had added my site to the thing and maybe I wanted to visit!
In some ways, it's like the older Bomis service. However, the folks at Zeal seem to have some significant financial backing for their enterprise, and I think they have improved the Bomis model. Whereas on the Bomis site, a single ringmaster is responsible for the maintenance of content in his chosen area (with the understanding that someone can start a new ring if dissatisfied with the management or the content of the existing rings -- very libertarian/anarcho-capitalist!), on Zeal one earns points (or loses them) through one's contributions (adding sites, doing reviews, editing profiles, etc). More points gives one more power on the site, but the existence of the points award structure fosters a sense of community, which promotes the end desired: to come of up with a search engine that, by virtue of its ratings/rankings, is much more useful to many more people! Because no anonymous contributions are allowed, one's reputation and one's ability to effect change on the site are directly related to one's talents. Pretty neat. I encourage people to give it a try.
It's definitely been a long day when I'm rambling on about competing search engine/rings/communities and somehow tying that in with anarcho-capitalism! It is time for bed.
Copyright (c) 2000, Kevin L. Whited