OpenDNS Moderators. Let’s talk about them. Who are they? Are they ninjas? Do they ever sleep? Well, I can’t tell about the Moderators without first explaining the Domain Tagging system. Please allow me…

The Domain Tagging system, as it stands, is set up somewhat like an assembly line. First, domains are submitted by you and thousands of people like you, to be grouped in one of our 56 different categories. Once submitted, other people (but you can do this too) then vote whether or not it belongs in the category to which it’s been submitted. Once the domain reaches a vote threshold it’s moved into moderation.

This is where the OpenDNS Moderators come in.

Once the domain reaches the moderation queue, moderators are responsible for reviewing and making the final say about whether or not the domain belongs in the category. They very carefully review the voting results, use their sound judgement and Internet excellency, and of course, visit the website itself before making a final call. If approved, the domain is then added to the category and blocked for all OpenDNS users who’ve enabled filtering of that category.

So who are these moderators and how do I become one?

OpenDNS Moderators are invaluable to our users, and invaluable to Internet safety and security. They work in academia, as IT technicians, software engineers and as security researchers and some are even stay-at-home moms turned Internet security superheroes. There are OpenDNS Moderators in nearly every country, from Kenya to India to Canada to Brazil to Switzerland. The volunteers work together to ensure speed and accuracy in domain categorization and ensure OpenDNS content filtering is the absolute most useful it can possibly be to millions of Internet users around the world. They’re identified throughout the community by a badge that’s located next to their OpenDNS username.

You don’t have to be a security expert to be an OpenDNS moderator. All that’s absolutely required is a desire to help make the Internet better. An enjoyment of exploring the deluge of new websites continuously emerging on the Internet doesn’t hurt, either. 🙂

If this sounds like you, we’d love for you to join the team. Do you have what it takes? The application process is easy and open-ended. Just let us know why you’d make a great addition.

Your seat in the OpenDNS Moderator’s chair awaits.

Vinny LaRiza is the community moderator at OpenDNS, where he works with mods around the world to ensure speed and accuracy in OpenDNS Domain Tagging. Contact him at vinny@opendns.com.

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