Ketil Froyn's blog

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Mon, 10 Aug 2009

URL shorteners: Publicize links


All serious URL shortener services should publicize information on all short links and what long links they point to. This should be seen as a public responsibility.

As more online traffic follows these short URLs, there will be more business value attached to the sum of this traffic. If you are a small business incidentally getting large parts of your traffic through short URLs that have been used online, you could end up as collateral in the fall of the URL shortener in question.

The URL shortener tr.im is now discontinuing its service, leaving all tr.im links ever used dead.

As a user, only use URL shortener services that publicize links. I don't see what good it does the user not to publicize this, given the nature of the service. If I did miss a useful use case for this, I suggest the URL shorteners make this an out-out feature, so users can choose not to publicize if they so wish.

You could, of course, just use the major URL shortener and hope it doesn't die out. But shocking outages and bankruptcies do happen. Would this one be so shocking?



posted at: 16:54 | path: /2009/08 | permanent link to this entry