Categorization Process

Categorization Process

The Wavecrest URL list is 100% human reviewed.

Web Site Categorization

How Categorization Works.  The software works by comparing the URLs of the visited sites with pre-categorized URLs contained in a proprietary database known as the Wavecrest URL List, sometimes referred to as a “control list.” When the software finds a match, it assigns the visited site’s URL the same category as its counterpart in the Wavecrest URL List.

Overview.  Wavecrest Computing uses a highly systematic, proprietary process for pre-categorizing Web sites for inclusion in the Wavecrest URL List.

Our process uses:

  1. Skilled, mature, carefully selected, trained list analysts.
  2. Carefully tested automation techniques known as “spidering.”
  3. Stringent quality control measures and management reviews.
  4. Adherence to Supreme Court guidelines with respect to issues of pornography.

Human Control.  Our human analysts actually find, review, examine, and categorize the vast majority of sites on a manual, eyeball basis. Those that are found by spidering are spot-checked to ensure validity of the process.

Spidering Pornography Sites.  The details of this technique are proprietary. Although the Supreme Court has provided some broad, general guidelines, there are no ironclad, universally accepted criteria for categorizing an image or block of text as pornographic. The Supreme Court itself refers to “community standards” as the final arbiter. This being the case, we have trained our analysts to couple good judgment with the Supreme Court guidelines to look for obscene, vulgar, prurient, salacious, sexually explicit content, and err on the conservative side. In other words, if there is doubt, we DO NOT categorize a site or URL as pornography.

Quality Assurance.  Wavecrest Computing goes to great lengths to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the data contained in the Wavecrest URL List. Our quality assurance approach utilizes peer reviews, spider process reviews, management reviews, and revisits to previously categorized sites to ensure impartiality, consistency, and accountability on the part of employees and managers involved in the list-building process.

Continuous Improvement Through Customer Collaboration.  One of the techniques used by Wavecrest Computing to build and refine the list is “customer collaboration.” We do this through a program we call “OtherWise.” Under this program a number of customers are submitting their “Other” (Top Noncategorized Sites) reports to us so that we can focus our list-improvement efforts on actual hard data defining “popular” or often-visited sites. 

Managing Categorization

The software itself does the essential categorization tasks. However, you can manage and augment this functionality to increase the categorization rate and maximize the overall usefulness of the product.

Keep Your URL List Current via Daily Updates.  Wavecrest works continuously to update and expand the URL List. New updates are available for download daily. It’s a simple process that can be done manually or on an automatic/scheduled basis. The necessary settings are available starting on the Administration - URL List screen. Screen tips and product Help are available if needed.

Establish Custom Categories.  Customers can augment the standard categories with an unlimited number of custom categories. You can create and use as many or as few of these as you want, and you can easily give them specific names of your own choosing. Names are limited to 50 characters. These settings are found on the Advanced Settings – Category Setup – Custom Categories screen. Once a custom category has been established, you can augment the Wavecrest URL List with URLs of your own choosing and place them in the custom category for subsequent tracking.

Add URLs.  Customers can add URLs to both standard and custom categories. The applicable settings are found on the Advanced Settings – Category Setup – Edit URLs screen. You can also delete URLs via this screen.

Change a URL’s Category.  If you wish, you can change the category to which Wavecrest has assigned a particular URL. You can do this by simply adding the URL to the category of your choice. Your categorization will take permanent precedence over the Wavecrest URL List.

Participate in Our OtherWise Program.  This program was explained earlier under “Web Site Categorization." To opt in, you simply need to periodically run a Top Noncategorized Sites report and send a copy to via e-mail. Our list technicians will research, identify, and categorize the most popular unidentified sites, many of which will be of local or special interest to your organization. Then, after you download the next daily control list update, subsequent visits to those sites by your users will no longer be listed as "Other." They’ll be properly identified and categorized. Note:  We hold all customer information sent to us in strict confidence.

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