It appears that Zeal, a one time contender with the Open Directory and later acquired by Looksmart in 2000 will be put to rest next Tuesday, March 28th. In my opinion this is yet another sad story of Looksmart buying what once was a great product and allowing it to die a slow death.
The following was taken from the Zeal Message Board:
“Dear Valued Zealots and Contributors,
Thank you for being a part of the Zeal community and contributing your time and knowledge to the Directory. After trying to put the deserved resources behind Zeal, we have made the conscious decision to shut down Zeal.com. On March 28, 2006 Zeal will no longer be available. We are not selling Zeal.com and have no future plans for it at this time.
We think that avid Zeal users will appreciate the large, interesting and vital community at Furl.net. Furl is an online book marking service that helps you save information that’s important to you, share it with others and see what others are saving and find important.
With Furl you can:
- Save Web pages to a personal, permanent archive with 5GB of storage
- Revisit the full text of your favorite Web pages
- Share articles and information with friends and family members with simple email pass-along tools
- Use Furl as a platform for social networking and discovering useful information
- Share articles and information with people that share common interests using RSS feeds
- See what other Furl members are saving and sharing
- Save your favorite Zeal content
Whether you are browsing the Web, travel planning, recipe sharing, house hunting or researching, Furl is a wonderful tool. Join the thousands of people that are using Furl every day to find, save and share information that is important to them.”
Of course I think Zeal actually starting dying a long time ago when Looksmart stopped allowing free inclusion with the exception of non-profit and not-for-profit sites. The same is true of the search engine WiseNut which Looksmart also acquired but hardly does anything with it anymore. There has been discussion as to whether this announcement holds any merit but as Looksmart has been itself dying a slow death for quite some time now, I am not surprised at this announcement in the least.