A web directory is an online platform for storing and publishing data belonging to companies or individuals. These can be surnames, first names, telephone numbers, e-mail addresses, postal addresses, information on the company (turnover, the manager’s name, SIREN number, SIRET).
A web directory allows to preserve and share data, publicly or not, and to modify them if necessary. There’re different types of web directories : on the Internet, we can find company directories, telephone directories and those concerning individuals.
An online company directory allows Internet users to consult information concerning a company. The available data can be hierarchical (the manager’s name, the sub-manager’s name…), financial (turnover, share capital), legal (SIREN, SIRET, legal form…) and various (postal addresses, staff, telephone, date of creation of the company, website…).
Thanks to this, Web users can become interested and easily obtain information about the company concerned. Also, it allows companies to be referenced online and share their information. The two best-known company directories in France are Société.com and the Google listings displayed to the right of the Google search page.
Individual directories are intended to record and publish information about any person. These are data aggregators : these directories collect public online data relating to a particular person and group them together in the form of digital identity cards. Depending on the sites, these can be modified and fed by the person concerned or a third person. These data are various : name, first name, e-mail and postal address, telephone number, photograph…
This system is highly controversial with regard to the private nature of some data, put online in public view. However, these directories make it possible to find close relations or X person and in that way, to renew old bonds. Also, as the Yatedo site offers, it can help manage and improve its online image. Another example of a known directory : 123 People.
The online telephone directories follow the same principle as the big paper directories ; moreover Pages Jaunes / Blanches are also present on the Web to get used to this new source of information that is the Web. As it defines it, a telephone directory lists and makes public the companies’ or individuals’ numbers. Some of its, like Pages Jaunes / Blanches, offer Internet users other information such as the postal address, a itinerary to get there…
These directories most often allow searching by name and mailing address. On some sites, such as 118218, it is also possible to use the reverse directory option : this consists in entering the desired number in order to known the holder of it.