Internet Yellow Pages Comparison
Book Review

On December 2, 2002, in Book Review, by Chris Seibold

Que’s Official Internet Yellow Pages
ISBN 0-7897-2811-7
1054 Pages
Joe Kraynak
$29.99 US, 46.99 CAN

Harley Hahn’s Internet Yellow Pages (2003 Edition)
ISBN 0-07-222553-X
991 pages
Harley Hahn
$29.99 US, 44.95 CAN

If you live in an area of sufficient population you’ll notice that for roughly one month a year there is a huge advertising blitz to sway your fingers to either the “Real Yellow Pages” or “Yellow Book”. Of course they’re not really trying to sway you to use their particular shade of yellow, these ads correspond with the big push for advertisers to buy space in the respective number packed books o’ goods and services. I can’t really tell any difference at all between the two so if I had to review them I’d flip a coin. Thankfully there are more differences between Que’s Official Internet Yellow Pages and Harley Hahn’s Internet Yellow Pages than your standard phone yellow pages.

The first question that might cross your mind is: “Why, what with search engine technology being what it is, do I need one of these books?” That same question stumped me for a few minutes as well. In hopes of finding an answer I typed in a few links found in one of the books and I soon realized that the sites contained upon these saffron hued leaves were of a higher quality than sites found by the most clever search engine. If you’ve decided you’d like to follow links recommended by an one of these books but just don’t know which pile of yellow to pick you’ve come to the right place. First we’ll examine the commonalties (a great many) and then the differences (not so many) betwixt the two books.

What do Que’s Official Internet Yellow Pages and Harley Hahn’s Internet Yellow Pages have in common? A bunch. Both are yellow, both are quite thick and both are very visually reminiscent of the actual yellow pages. I will note that Que’s Official Internet Yellow Pages has a slightly more greenish hue than Harley Hahn’s Internet Yellow Pages so if subtle color variations make all the difference to you keep that in mind. That takes care of the outside of the books, what’s inside is a bit more interesting and varied. If you’re going to buy one of these books you’ll have to make some choices. Both books have a bunch of links but Harley Hahn’s Internet Yellow Pages includes paths leading to mailing lists, usenet discussion groups and the occasional IRC reference. Both books also include verbiage with their links, but there is a big difference when the authors put the pen to paper. With Harley Hahn’s Internet Yellow Pages you get a nice, if brief, discussion of the topic and then a list of links. Que’s Official Internet Yellow Pages, on the other hand, ads a little blurb with each link that describes what you’re going to find if you visit said website and this blurb can be quite a time saver. The final tidbit that needs discussion is the sheer number of links. I don’t know which book has more links and I’m not going to count every one of them but if you open the book randomly (page 677 in this case) you’ll find Que’s Official Internet Yellow Pages has nine web sites listed while Harley Hahn’s Internet Yellow Pages has eighteen typable links.

Which book you prefer is, of course, a matter of personal preference. Harley Hahn’s Internet Yellow Pages has the edge if you’re looking for sheer numbers of sites listed but if youÔre after one of these books as a method of filtering the web and finding the best site quickly then Que’s Official Internet Yellow Pages is the better choice owing to the brief descriptions of sites listed. Both books are more than adequate if you’re in the market for this type of reference as the sites listed are all fairly high quality. My advice is to take a quick look at both of them, you’ll know which one is for you pretty quickly.

Bottom line(s):
Que’s Official Internet Yellow Pages: Nice ratings of sites (including stars and the occasional “best” label) and site descriptions make this the choice if you want to know what you’re getting before you get there.
MacMice Rating: 3 out of 5

Harley Hahn’s Internet Yellow Pages is the choice for those after sheer numbers of links and those interested in Internet resources beyond web pages.
MacMice Rating: 3 out of 5

Chris Seibold

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