Ben came across an indian business directory site just today, which is really neat. It looks great and works well (in fact I think we have a few things to learn from them on layouts and design). I just can’t get over this feeling that all these centrally collated and managed databases are too heavy to maintain, and that peer-production of yellow pages, phone book and business directory services is the way forward. Its great to seed the system, that gives it utility from day 1, but as far as ongoing maintenance goes, well, Ben and I used to work for big directory companies and I can tell you that maintenance of that sort of data is going to be a costly. Roll on peer production.
On a related note, if you’re interested in rolling out The Brownbook in your part of the world drop us a line (Jerry@brownbook.net).