Jason Calacanis, who calls his new venture Mahalo “human-powered search,” says the company will pay freelance searchers a fee for links the site accepts. He says he hopes for hundreds or thousands of people in this part-time capacity.
This sounds to me like an updated version of the Open Directory Project, but this time with payments for the editors. Not a bad idea.
In his talk at the NMK event, Jason called for wide efforts to rid the Net of the pollution he says threatens to choke off all of the value. He had particular contempt for the search engine “optimization” industry that he believes is one of the worst polluters. (Click on his slide, left, to see a trajectory of decline.)
But, he says, blogs have so far responded fairly well with antibodies. (The “blogs” slide at right has a happier ending.) Naturally, he pitches his new company as an andidote for part of the problem.
There’s no question that the major Internet companies (read Google, Yahoo, Microsoft et al) have not done enough to curb the pollution. But do we really want to toss out the part of this that machines handle so well? I don’t think so.