Site Selection Criteria
Below are guidelines that directly relate to adding specific types of sites. These guidelines will help ensure that material added to the ODP meets the directory's goals.
No site is guaranteed placement in the Kids and Teens Open Directory, and the project depends on editors using good judgment when adding content. Our goal is to make the Kids and Teens ODP the most useful resource for children and teenagers on the Internet. The Kids and Teens ODP includes sites designed for people under the age of 18 years old. Sites intended for a general audience that are appropriate for, and of interested to, people under 18 may be added to the Kids and Teens ODP, even if they are also listed in the main ODP directory.
We ask that editors maintain editorial integrity and always employ good common sense.
Sites to Include
Quality, Content Rich Web Sites
Web sites added to the Kids and Teens Open Directory should have the following general qualities:
- Content rich material that has an intrinsic value to the viewer to increase the viewers awareness of, understanding of and interest in the materials being viewed.
- Reference materials appropriate to that age group. Remember, Kids and Teens lists sites for kids, not about kids.
- Up-to-date resources that are well-maintained.
- Material that provides diversity to a particular category's content.
Age Appropriate Sites
All sites intended, targeted, or appropriate for people under the age of 18. Sites added should be evaluated against the following age appropriate guidelines.
- Kids (12 years and younger)
- content tailored to the developmental and educational interests of young children.
- Teens (13-15 years)
- content focusing on areas of interest to young teens that includes relevant subjects and resources plus content that address new interests that these age groups typically develop.
- Mature Teens (16-18 years)
- content that recognizes expanding abilities, interests, responsibilities and maturity of this age level.
Sites that are not intended to focus on one or more of the under 18 age groups should not be added to the Kids and Teens Open Directory.
Informational or Educational Consumer-oriented Sites
Consumer-oriented sites that are predominantly informational or entertainment-oriented are acceptable for the Kids and Teens Open Directory.
Acceptable: This site is primarily educational/entertainment, but as a link to a shopping site on the header. It is part of the larger Discovery.com web site.
Title: Discovery Kids
Description: Check out their fun, weekly adventures, games, and live animal cams.
Unacceptable: This site contains many items that would be of interest to children, but is primarily a shopping site.
Description: Shop online for all types of brands and toys.
If a site's primary purpose is to sell products and services, it should be considered a commerce site, and not be added to the Kids and Teens ODP, even if the targeted audience is the under 18 age group. Sites that are informational or entertainment-oriented, but contain a shopping component (like an online store) may be acceptable as long as the shopping component is not the principal component of the web site. Additionally, if a visitor must purchase something to make the site worth visiting, it should not be included in the directory.
Acceptable: This site exists to allow children to publish writing on the Internet, but also allows anyone to read the published work. Even though a fee is required to publish work, anyone can view the writing free of charge.
Description: A site for young writers to submit their work or read work by other kids. Has over 40,000 submissions.
Unacceptable: Though this site offers an Internet browser for children, visitors must pay to use the software. Additionally, the site seems to be targeted more at concerned parents than at possible child users.
Description: A kid-friendly, safe Internet browser that allows for extensive parental controls.
Exceptions may include commerce sites that attempt to teach children and teens money management, budgeting, or "how-to-shop."
Acceptable: This site is sponsored by a financial advisor who wants to sell a service, but it does have some articles about how a kid can save money, start a business, and get some questions about money answered.
Title: The Young Investor Web Site
Description: Place for kids and parents to learn about money and investing. The site offers games and advice.
Sites Generally Not Included
- Pictures, text and/or audio advocating materials or activities of a dubious nature which may be illegal in any or all jurisdictions, which includes, but is not limited to illegal business schemes, chain letters, intellectual property right infringement, computer hacking, phreaking (using someone's phone lines without permission) and software piracy. This includes pictures, text and/or audio advocating gambling relating to lotteries, casinos, betting, numbers games, on-line sports or financial betting, including non-monetary dares; and links to material that specifically advocates, solicits or abets illegal activity (such as fraud or violence); and material that is libelous.
- Pictures, text and/or audio exposing extreme cruelty, physical or emotional acts against any animal or person, which are primarily intended to hurt or inflict pain.
- Obscene words, phrases, and profanity defined as text that uses, but is not limited to, George Carlin's 7 censored words more often than once every 50 messages (newsgroups) or once a page (web sites). Editors are encouraged to use their best judgment when considering profanity in web sites. If a site has profanity only once per page, but on every page, it may not be eligible for listing. When in doubt, consult other editors and the forums.
Pictures exposing any or all portions of the human genitalia and including the female breast and full exposure of either male or female buttocks
- Swimsuits, including thongs
- Cultural nudity as seen in educational and art publication web sites such as National Geographic or Smithsonian Magazine.
- Artistic nudity as seen in sites hosted by museums such as the Guggenheim, the Louvre, or the Museum of Modern Art where nudity can be displayed in works of fine art.
- Instructional and informational diagrams found on web sites hosted by organizations or institutions whose focus is to distribute educational content on the human reproductive system to people under 18.
Pictures, text and/or or audio advocating or exposing anyone or anything involved in explicit sexual acts and or lewd and lascivious behavior, including masturbation, copulation, pedophilia, intimacy involving nude or partially nude people in heterosexual, bisexual, lesbian or homosexual encounters. Also includes phone sex ads, commercial sites marketing and selling sexual paraphernalia, dating services, and adult personals, CD-ROM's and videos.
- Educational materials that discuss sexual development and puberty, contraception, information on sexually transmitted diseases, safe sexual practices, sexual health, and anatomy and physiology of the human reproductive system. These materials should be aimed at the under 18 age groups, and should contain factual, encyclopedic-type information.
- Pictures, descriptive text and/or audio of anyone or anything which are crudely vulgar or grossly deficient in civility or behavior or which show scatological impropriety. Includes such depictions as maiming, bloody figures, or indecent depiction of bodily functions.
- Pictures, text and/or audio advocating prejudice or discrimination against any race, color, national origin, religion, disability or handicap, gender, or sexual orientation. Any picture or text that elevates one group over another. Also includes intolerant jokes or slurs.
Pictures, text and/or audio advocating devil worship, an affinity for evil, or wickedness. Or the advocacy to join a cult. (A cult is defined as a closed society that is headed by a single individual where loyalty is demanded and leaving is punishable. In some instances harm to self or others is advocated.)Exceptions:
- Sites providing educational or historical content presented in a factual, encyclopedic manner.
Pictures, text and/or audio advocating, offering, selling, supplying, or otherwise encouraging the recreational or illegal use, cultivation, manufacture, or distribution of drugs, pharmaceuticals, intoxicating plants or chemicals and their related paraphernalia. Includes promoting or advocating the use of substances or other than their primary purpose in order to alter the individual's state of mind, such as glue sniffing.Exceptions
- Currently illegal drugs legally prescribed for medicinal purposes (e.g., drugs used to treat glaucoma or cancer).
- Drug research and development.
- Substance abuse resource sites.
- Pictures, text and/or audio advocating extremely aggressive and combative behaviors, or advocacy of unlawful political measures. Topics include groups that advocate violence as a means to achieve their goals. Sites which advocate causing physical harm to people or property through the use of weapons, explosives, pranks, or other types of violence. Including "how to" information on weapons making, ammunition making or the making or use of pyrotechnics materials. Also includes the use of weapons for unlawful reasons.
- Pictures or text advocating or encourages or offers the sale, consumption, or production of alcoholic beverages or tobacco products. This includes commercial sites in which alcohol or tobacco products are the primary focus. (i.e., retailer or manufacturer sites, how to smoke or smoking is glamorous sites)