Another one bites the dust. We really weren’t sorry to see DirectHit go. Their basic underlying concept for ranking sites was to give priority to the sites that got the most clicks. To us, that seemed like a vicious circle, keeping anything new from gaining traction. To the winner go the spoils – or – the power of the incumbency.
In the beginning, DirectHit results were often seen on other search engines and were labeled “Popular.” For example, in 2001, if you searched MSN.com, you’d see a link that said “Get the 10 most popular web sites for…” and you’d see DirectHit results. In 2001, Lycos showed DirectHit results at the top of their results page under the heading “Popular.” Those results were followed by “Web Sites” which were pulled from Fast/AllTheWeb search. Also in 2001, DirectHit became the default search engine for HotBot. Finally, when you searched About.com, DirectHit powered the “or try these related searches” part of the search results.
In January 2000, Ask.com purchased Direct Hit. In September 2001, Ask.com purchased Teoma. Teoma results replaced Ask results, and DirectHit results continued to be featured as “Get the 10 most popular Web sites for…” links.
Direct Hit has been gone for all intents and purposes for several years.