Archive

Follow

Follow topics you like and never miss any update.
Follow feature

If you come across an interesting topic you can click on the follow button to start receiving updates. Every week you will receive an email with an update about the links that have been added to the page.

Benefits

  • Weekly updates about your favorite topic
  • Follow any topics you like
  • Stay up to date about the latest developments

How to use

  1. 1. Select the topic
  2. 2. Click on Follow
  3. 3. Login or signup
  4. 4. Receive weekly email with all updates

Are you excited about contributing? Start making your own lists on ZEEF and join our mission in building the largest human edited link directory.

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Widget

Embed your top lists of links on your website and display relevant links next to your blog. You’re able to earn money if links are promoted with TIP or affiliate links.

Widget feature image

Benefits

  • CTR up to 4x compared to AdSense
  • Up-to-date lists of links
  • Performance per links

How to use


You can search or create a list of links. Simply click on the embed icon ‘<>” in the list, customise and copy-paste the code into your website.

  1. Create list
  2. Press the embed icon <>
  3. Customize the design
  4. Copy-paste the embed code into your website

Examples of widgets


Start making lists, embed lists into your blog and drive more revenue.

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Suggest links

Suggest links to lists and receive recognition for your contribution.

Suggest link thumbnail

If you notice that a link is missing in a list, you are able to suggest your link. Simply click on the ‘+’ icon below the list and suggest your link. The curator will review your suggestion. If your link is approved your profile will be displayed behind your suggested link. Everybody can see that you have contributed in making this a quality lists of links.

Benefits

  • Share your knowledge
  • Contribute to the community
  • Gain recognition

Suggest lists recognition

How to use

In three simple steps you can help the curator with finding quality links.

Suggest link flow final

Are you excited about contributing? Start making your own lists on ZEEF and join our mission in building the largest human edited link directory.

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The Art of Content Curation

Art of Content Curation, Sprout Challenge & Workshop

This week was a fantastic one for ZEEF. On Wednesday, ZEEF hosted their first annual event ‘The Art of Content Curation’, and on Thursday, ZEEF’s pitch landed in the finals of Sprout’s Startup of the Year competition. Next week, we’ll be training a whole new group of curators to keep the momentum going.

Art of Content Curation 2015

We are very proud of the fully booked guest list, the great speakers and the creative dinner at our first annual event. During the evening, we explored content curation from all different sides – the legal aspects, the business value it provides, and how we can use it to enhance learning in our businesses. In addition to the main presentations, companies already using content curation to drive their businesses pitched their concepts. We hope that our event is just the beginning of a much longer discussion.

It may be surprising to hear that there wasn’t a presentation about ZEEF at the event. You may already know that Facebook is hosting a conference on social media, but is not highlighting themselves during it. ZEEF is working towards a similar goal. We want to be a resource and knowledge center for the broader discussion about the importance of content curation, without needing to highlight our own services in the process.

Presentations can be found on the  company page of ZEEF. Pictures of the event are on Facebook. On Monday Susanne Bender will provide a full report about the events including all the pictures. And of course, our guests were tweeting like mad both during and after the event. Check out #ZEEFcom and #AoCC2015 for the tweets. On aocc.networktables.com you can see who were on your table in case you’d like to connect.

We hope to see you all hope you will all join next year at The Art of Content Curation 2016!

Sprout Challenge

To everybody who supported and voted us through to the final stage of Sprout ´Startup of the Year´ competition, we´d like to say a big thanks on behalf of the entire ZEEF team. We’re proud to have made it as far as we did in the contest.

Your votes made us one of the four finalists. The final round of the contest consisted of us pitching to a panel of investors, influentials and Sprout writers on why we believed we should be voted as Startup of the Year. Although we didn’t win, we were voted as runners up in the competition, along with Fastr and Bux Netherlands. Congratulations to Undagrid on winning Sprout´s title of Startup of the Year. To read more about the event, just click here (Article in Dutch).

ZEEF Workshop: creating a quality page

On Wednesday, 21 January, from 17:00 – 19:00, ZEEF will host a workshop about creating and curating a page on ZEEF. Register now!

This workshop will dive into the practice of content curation and demonstrate how you can start curating on ZEEF. Curators of ZEEF will be present and will share their insights to provide you with tips and tricks to help you join the growing trend of content curation. We will be serving beer and pizza! Please join us!

Register
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startup van het jaar 2 bij 1

ZEEF reaches ‘Startup of the Year’ finals

Okay… sorry for all the spamming in the last 72 hours but we are very proud to announce that we are a finalist in ‘Sprout Startup of the Year‘.

It was a very close call with the public voting. Until the very last minute everybody was trying to get more votes for ZEEF. It made New Years Eve very different from all the other years (at least for me) because every minute our position changed from No 1 to No 2 and then to No 4 etc. With a glass of champagne in my right hand and my iphone in my left hand, I was checking whether we made it to the first place. I noticed that after midnight the position of ZEEF was still changing and we actually managed to be first in the race 🙂 Below (figure 1) you see a screenshot taken from my phone at 00.03 that ZEEF was number one in the public voting with 20.06%.

Iphone screenshot of ZEEF being no 1

Figure 1 – Screenshot at 00.03 of Sprout Voting results

However, as always the next morning the reality was a bit different… Sprout released the ‘official’ numbers and we managed to become second along with Undagrid with 778 votes. Below (figure 2) you find the exact numbers of all the other startups.

Sprout official results

 

Figure 2 – Sprout Official Voting Results

But no worries it is still not over.. Because now we are preparing for our final round for ‘Startup of the Year’ which will be held on Wednesday 15th of January in the beautiful and inspiring environment B.Amsterdam. At this location all finalist will give their final pitch to convince the jury of earning the title ‘Startup of the Year’.

B.Amsterdam4.-Lounge

We are looking forward to the finals and we wish @Fastr, @UndaGrid and @Bux all the luck in the world. Because you gonna need it 😉

 

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Link Directory: the history and future

Link Directory: The History and Future

“Quality information can be found through people, not machines.”

The link directory was the forerunner of search. But yesterday’s announcement about the shutdown of the Yahoo! Directory marks the end of an era. Why did the link directory become so popular in the first place? How did it evolve? And is there any future for a new link directory?

When the Internet was young, and there were fewer websites, it was easy for people to keep track of information. As a hobby project, Jerry Yang and David Filo started categorizing websites. They called it ‘Jerry and David’s Guide to the World Wide Web’. In 1994, they officially launched Yahoo! (‘Yet Another Hierarchical Officious Oracle’). This might feel out-dated, but back then, this personally curated approach was very important. It stood out among the inferior search engines of the time. Due to the success of Yahoo!, other directories soon followed, such as DMOZ.org.

In 1999, Yahoo! reached its peak, becoming the number one destination to start searching for information. But as the number of websites grew, it became impossible for Yahoo! to keep the directory up to date. And site owners would get frustrated that submissions sometimes seemed to go into a black hole, never to appear. Or, if they were listed, a Yahoo! editor might alter their carefully worded description — which caused them not to show up at all in response to some keyword searches. There were a number of other complications with the ‘old’ link directory systems:

  • Spam
    • Link directories were spammed because back linking resulted in higher search engine rankings.
  • Speed of search
    • Finding a website on a directory took many clicks, in comparison with search engines.
  • Paid listing
    • The link directory required you to pay in order to be listed. That made it impossible to provide a complete (and fair) overview of quality websites about a certain topic.
  • Ranking
    • The listings were unranked. The first website in the link directory listing was not necessarily the best, most viewed etc.
  • One editor per topic
    • Most directories only had a single curator who was responsible for listing all the websites, which made it a daunting task to keep the listing up to date. Additionally, the identity of the curator was not displayed, making it hard to verify his credibility.
  • Broken links / Outdated
    • Single curators, now overwhelmed by the task at hand, caused the listings to become outdated and the links to become broken.

As a result, the people-curated link directory was replaced by an algorithm. It became the fastest way to search for an overview of sites on a specific subject. It became the age of search engines.

The Present of the Link Directory

But everyone knows the limits of algorithms. Smart SEO specialists can bring a site to the top of a search engine result in no time. And that doesn’t say anything about the quality of the information that you’ll find on the sites. Today, there’s no way to tell the quality difference between the #1 search result, and the #3. Or the #20. Even Google admits that search is far from solved:

“You often hear people talk about search as a solved problem. But we are nowhere near close.”

Eric Schmidt, Google

And, despite the advent of the algorithm-based search engine, the act of categorizing and ranking websites (content curation) still remains popular. People like lists of links. In fact, 30% of all blog posts are ‘Top 10 lists’. So it is no surprise that the link directory as an information source is still operational.

The modern day link directory still faces the same challenges challenges that Yahoo! did: objectivity of listings, paying for ranking, spam and broken links. A problem that the modern day link directory can’t seem to solve.. Only multiple curators can reduce complications, and help avoid manipulation, monopolies, and missed opportunities.

Multi human curation is needed if you look at the three major problems on the Internet today:

  • Information overload and the search for quality information
  • Trustworthiness of online information
  • Inability to qualitatively rank search engine results

As often is the case, content curation finds strength in numbers. Multiple curators share responsibility for finding the latest, best and most reliable information available online. And if one curator fails, another curator can pick up the slack.

And  The Future of the Link Directory

Does the link directory have any future? Yes… if they learn from the past. The basic idea of finding information through people instead of machines is still important. It’s human nature to categorize and rank information. And, when it comes to topics they know little or nothing about, people still refer to the expertise of those in their network who know more. The guys at Facebook are well aware of this.

So, how do we provide a platform for the next (r)evolution in search? Is it possible to restore the former glory of the link directory? Is there a future beyond the search engine? Of course there is. And it’s a future that combines the power of the algorithm with the necessary human touch.

Of course, the search still begins with search engines. But then, with human curation, an actual person sifts through those search results, filters out the best content, and ranks it according to quality. To be successful, a future link directory should be:

  • Maintained by active human editors with verifiable credentials – manipulation and fraud may still occur, but everyone will know who the ‘bad guys’ are
  • Categorized and ranked by knowledgeable people (curator and crowd)
  • Searchable and easy to use
  • Equipped with a social review ranking system
  • Open (to suggestions) and freely accessible to edits and suggestions of links
  • Extensive and broad-scope to provide complete information
  • Localized for relevance to specific communities
  • Listings can be distributed via widgets on other websites

Building this kind of a link directory takes time. But by learning from the past, we will be able to build a next generation of directories that will help us navigate through the world wide web. And by working together, we can achieve maximum results from combining algorithm speed with human sensibility.

We are ready to take on this challenge!

Frido

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How to build a startup

How to build a startup?

I always thought about creating a startup but the big question is: ‘How?’ I solved this problem by building startup.zeef.com A collection of resources and tools for entrepreneurs.

I was googling for hours to find interesting content to read on how to build a startup. But finding the right information was quite a challenge for me because everybody can produce content on the internet. But who is the guru? Who do you trust? This is a big issue online nowadays. I contacted my friend Christiaan Henny who already started his startup eFaqt.com and asked for his advice about resources and tools. I started bookmarking all these interesting websites I came across. This pretty much got out of hand and now I have talked with over 50 entrepreneurs and collected over 330 resources.

To save time for all the new entrepreneurs(and experienced ones too) I have published these bookmarks on startup.zeef.com. Below you can find a nice summary of all my resources.

Books to read

The first thing I started collecting were books to read. Books can be a great source of inspiration and based on the feedback from the entrepreneurs I have tried my best to find the right ones to help you get started. These five books are a great introduction to get started with building your startup.

Blogs

Personal stories are very informative and can help you move forward. Reading about failures and issues of other entrepreneurs, in addition to only doing business is important. A startup is cool but it is really important you keep a work-life balance. These blogs are very interesting to follow and provide you with first-hand personal advice from the startup trenches.

Business models

Whether you like it or not, eventually your business needs to generate revenue. Having a clear vision and plan on how your business will generate revenue helps you to keep focus and also indicates to your future investors that you have a vision on your ability to execute. These websites are a great source on how to build a sustainable business model.

Sites to submit your startup

Getting the word out there about your new startup is very important to receive feedback and attract your first early adopters. These websites can help you reach out to potential early adopters.

Accelerator programs

Once you have founded your startup there are some pretty cool programs you can join to kick start your business. These programs usually last for 100 days and offer mentoring, seed capital and an extensive network to get traction and bootstrap your company.

A/B Testing

Running a tech startup is like writing your thesis; you are constantly testing, validating and adjusting your assumptions. A/B testing is a very effective way to validate your assumptions. These tools and websites can help you with running A/B tests.

Growth Hacking

In the early days Hotmail simply added one feature that made the company go viral. They inserted the tagline “Get your free e-mail at Hotmail” into the signature of every e-mail sent out by their users. Hotmail was able to sign up 12 million users in 18 months. This list contains good guides, tips and tricks on how to grow your business effectively.

International events

Meeting like-minded people is very important in growing your business. This is a selection of annual events that are worth going to. Attend these events to meet startups, investors and potential companies to partner with.  This list provides you with all the international events you should consider to attend.

Get out of the building!

Of course there are many more resources, but the most important thing after reading all these tips and tricks is to get out of the building and put your theories and strategies into practice. You can read a thousand books and websites on entrepreneurship, but the only way you will learn it is by doing. Success is going from failure to failure without a lack of enthusiasm.

Dream, believe and don’t give up!

Do you believe you can do a better job in creating an overview about startups?

Yes

 

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Interview with¨Information Management¨ Curator : Henry van der Zwan

Henry-van-der-Zwan

Henry van der Zwan is advisor DIV / Document- and Recordmanagement at the Dutch Government. On ZEEF Henry created a page about ‘information management‘. Frido van Driem contacted Henry and asked him to share his experience about ZEEF.

How did you find out about ZEEF.com?

I first came across ZEEF in a retweet on Twitter. After that I was interested in ZEEF and started searching for the website.

What was your initial reaction?

When I visited the website I thought: “Oh, wow! Fantastic I can make my own link directories or start page.”

What are the benefits of using ZEEF for you?

I mainly just wanted to create an easy overview for people in my profession so that they could find all companies on one page. Next, I like to share things I am knowledgeable about which I think could be helpful to others and present that in a clear and easy way.

How was the process of creating a ZEEF page?

Creating a page on ZEEF was very easy and intuitive. I first started creating an overview of all the different link blocks. After that I started adding links to the different link blocks. I found it very easy to add links and adjust titles and descriptions.

What improvements would you like to see?

At the moment I do not have any improvements. I am still discovering and finding new things on ZEEF.

Was it clear what all the products of ZEEF were?

No, it took a while to find out what ZEEF is and what the benefits are. In my case I just wanted to present good quality information and links in a structured and clear presentation. I am still discovering what all the products of ZEEF are.

Is it clear that you are rewarded for your curation efforts?

In the beginning this was not clear but now I am aware of this.

 

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Looking back on … One year of ZEEF

On the 12th of July 2013 ZEEF gave its first launch party. The event was a big success and it was great to meet everyone who was interested in our company. This year flew by and a lot has happened since we went live. Time for us to look back and look back at our accomplishments of the past year.

We’re very proud of everything we’ve accomplished the past year. We received new funding, added 5 affiliate networks to our portfolio and released 15 new versions of ZEEF.com. To summarize here are the statistics of 2013-2014:

Statistics 2013 – 2014

  • 120 000 people served with high-quality information
  • 368 curators active on the platform
  • 627 pages are live
  • 81,963 links have been curated
  • 1,186 people are following ZEEF pages
  • 471 fans on Facebook

We hope next year the numbers have been doubled and that our first office abroad has been opened.

We also would like to thank everybody for their ongoing support and useful feedback about ZEEF. We’ll continue filtering the internet and we hope you’ll continue your ongoing support. We couldn’t have done this without you.

To celebrate our successes we invite all our curators Friday 18th July to our office for free drinks. The evening will start at 5 pm at Wibautstraat 129-8.

Keep on ZEEF!

Cheers,

Team ZEEF

 

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Patrick Loonstra

Interview Patrick Loonstra

Patrick Loonstra is designer at patrickloonstra.nl and has several pages on ZEEF such as adobe.ZEEF.com, sketch.ZEEF.com and groningen.ZEEF.com. Frido van Driem contacted him and asked him to share his experience about the platform.

How did you find out about ZEEF.com?

Via Fast Moving Targets where your colleague Rick Boerebach was talking about ZEEF.

What was your initial reaction?

It looked a lot like Delicious. I use Delicious from the start, but it is mainly for my own link collection. So after I heard about ZEEF I was very interested in trying the product. Now if I find an interested link, that fits in one of the pages I made, I will place it there.

What are the benefits of using ZEEF for you?

When I put a link on ZEEF it feels more important than providing the link to Delicious. I hope that the system eventually will show the best content. Other people can help me curate my content. Delicious is just a long list of links. Authority is not yet an issue. I am very curious when more people are writing about one of the subject I publish on Groningen.ZEEF.com, Sketch.ZEEF.com, Adobe.ZEEF.com and a few more to come. Then the real power of collaborated curating for subject will be shown.

I really enjoy using ZEEF as a bookmarking tool for myself and others. It is one of the parts of helping other people.

How was the process of creating a ZEEF page?

This was sometimes quite difficult. I mean where do you start? For example what is your first link block going to be about? When I was creating the page about Sketch I had resources, learning, plugins and official links. But between blocks there is a lot over overlap in subjects. It was difficult to decide what kind of link blocks I have to use. I am wondering how my interaction of ZEEF will develop after using it more often.

What improvements would you like to see?

There are still a lot of glitches in the system. Of course, as a designer, I see them directly. And I know that the whole platform is quite new, it involves a lot of different disciplines to build something like ZEEF.

Stuff like microcopy. Messages as “Cannot add link.” is not sufficient in a case I saw, because it does not say what the issue exactly is, and how I can fix it.

Further, the layout, the typography and the colours need to be designed from a more global perspective. The whole platform should feel and react the same and, ideally, how a user expects it to work. This is a whole lot of work. The cohesion between logo, blocks, interface. Colour and typography should be adjusted. The font is not optimal for reading.

Furthermore in terms of design, there is no difference between frontend and backend. As a user you don’t know when you are working on the back end or when you are working on the front end. I really hope it will become easier to add an image but I know you are working on this. This should be done easier. I still need to do some html to show a picture (note: this feature has been introduced in version 2014.6).

There could be some improvements about the widget customization. I would love to have the same colors in the widget that I use on my website (note: this feature has been introduced in version 2014.4). Can I have a link block that contains the best links about one subject? I want to have more room for visuals on my page. A big header image representing one page can make it more clear what the subject is. Nowadays everybody does this because the internet is getting more visual. People don’t want to read anymore.

I found the link description and block description but I did not use this yet. Maybe you should make it more clear that these two functionalities exists.

Enough work to do, and I would love to help with that.

“Thanks for your great suggestions and comments. We are working hard to solve them all and provide you the best UI Experience” – Frido van Driem

Was it clear what all the products of ZEEF were?

Yes, no doubt for me what it is, and what the value eventually will be. For me, but also for the rest of the users, the world, the universe.

Is it clear that you can earn money with ZEEF?

It is, but I question of that must be a big drive for people to participate in the platform.

Do you have any questions?

For now, no. I will keep playing with the platform and looking for improvements. I will keep you posted on my journey with ZEEF.com.

 

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