Yes they are useless. In an attempt to check them I submitted a high quality site of mine to 'so-called' high quality reciprocal link directories and the results were shocking. This site, when I submit it to free directories, at least half of them add it to their lists of sites, but when I submitted it to reciprocal directories, only around 8% of them linked back to me. "EIGHT PERCENT ONLY"!!! Do you get what I am telling. These reciprocal link directories are a waste of time. I have read about them being a waste of time but wanted to check it for myself so that I can share the results with you and also share some high-quality reciprocal link directories with you.
While submitting my site to them I noticed some other harmful things about them too. One of them was that after the link has been submitted they will display an error message that a back-link to them could not be found on your page which is a trick and I searched it on the web also and many webmasters have reported it as a "dirty trick" by reciprocal link directories. Another bad thing about them is that they link back to you with "NO PR" pages which is again an unhealthy for the SEO of your site. And backlinks with nofollow attribute from reciprocal directories are also being reported. So, always be very careful while submitting your site(s) to these directories. I will try to find some high-quality reciprocal link directories for you.