What's Cooking at ChefMoz
by Bcwine
Why Edit in ChefMoz?

Okay, you're an altruistic volunteer ODP editor who wants to help build the most comprehensive web index available. But you have limited time to contribute to the project and those unreviewed sites in the DMoz categories you edit never seem to go away. Besides, when they do, you somehow find yourself applying for new categories.

So why should you sign up for and spend time in ChefMoz, the ODP restaurant directory and dining guide? Let me give you a few reasons. :-)

Top Reasons Why You Should Edit in ChefMoz

1.  Frontier editing -- be one of the pioneers.  ChefMoz is still a new project and offers many opportunities for fast advancement. Each individual editor's efforts count for a lot and are recognized. You can easily make a significant mark on the dining guide by adding listings and helping to shape the look and function of the project.
2. Get away from it all.  True story: I've had a DMoz meta editor tell me that he enjoys editing in ChefMoz as a break from what can sometimes be a little bit stressful DMoz editing. It is a very different environment, with a relaxed atmosphere, due in large part to the project's youth and small size.
3. What taxonomy?  Okay, not entirely true. :-) But classifying restaurant listings according to location is pretty easy. And identifying what kind of food they serve should also not be difficult, especially if you find a website or a basic listing somewhere. No forum threads here about where a city category belongs.
4. Your home away from home.  Whenever DMoz is having trouble with password authentication, or it's down altogether, you can depend on ChefMoz to give you your editing fix.  You then get to post in the infamous "Recent Oral Experiences [or] What Are You Eating?" thread (or its continuation). 

5. US state gauntlets all over again.  Want to have a real impact on whether Texas listings outnumber California ones? Right now the ranking stands at #1 Texas, #2 California, #3 Arizona, #4 Florida, #5 New York, but the differences are in the hundreds in some cases, so the results can easily be swayed.

6. Far-away places, romantic travel!  Feel like going somewhere exotic? Live in a place that's under-represented?  Editors have been taking on single-country projects and building comprehensive dining guides for places like Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands and Seychelles, for example. This is where the work of one or two editors can make a big difference to a distinct part of the directory.
7. A great excuse to go out to eat. Some restaurant listings looking a little lonely sitting there without a review? Time to take off your editor hat -- ask your roommate / partner / spouse / kids to go out and watch a real restaurant reviewer at work.

8. You don't need to know much about dining, cooking or even eating to edit. One of the common misconceptions is that ChefMoz is only for editors who are food weenies. :-) This is not the case. Any macaroni-and-cheese type of person can add, edit and update restaurant listings in ChefMoz, as well as accepting reviews from the public. Being able to spell "restaurant" is a definite plus, though.

9. Help make the ODP complete. Built up your town's DMoz category up to a respectable level? Now all you have to do is to hop on over to ChefMoz, add the restaurant listings and then do the reciprocal links between the directories. Make sure you add the restaurant sites to both sides.  Please see the previous ChefMoz column for information on how to link to ChefMoz state and city listings in DMoz.
10. It's easy to join up and get started. Get your account activated or get a password reminder, familiarize yourself with the forum traffic and the (unofficial) guidelines and FAQ from your dashboard, and get started!

 ChefMoz News in Brief

Staff Engineer Autumn Looijen has added a number of features recently:

  • The city pages have a more compact, clearer layout now.
  • There's a new restaurant duplication feature that allows you to "clone" an existing listing to a new location. This automatically adds a related restaurant link to the listing, which can also be added manually.
  • Address formats may now be customized at the national level.
  • Cities may now have their "Postal Towns" set, if the mailing address is different from the name of the town.
Autumn hints that a European country is about to have a large bulk addition of listings.

New York City needs help sorting all its restaurants into the neighborhoods. At last count, there were just under 2,400 listings left in the "Other" category.

 United States has just broken the 60,000 listings barrier.

 Statistics as of the last week of August:

 66,299 restaurants
 3,120 reviews
 44,907 links to reviews
 349 editors
  Bon appetit! - Bcwine