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The Cost of Shortening Your Link

| On the one hand, URL shorteners are handy tools that shrink long, clumsy internet addresses into cute linklets that can fit into a Twitter message. On the other hand, writes Joshua Schachter, they needlessly slow internet traffic, pose a security risk, and can deprive site owners of valuable visitor information or even revenue. Shorteners can be helpful for individual users, but at a great cost to the internet ecosystem. So what if they all went offline? That could be even worse; suddenly, the web would be littered with tens of millions of tiny, broken links all pointing to middlemen that no longer exist. Schachter calls it the great link rot apocalypse. (HT: Kottke) [%comments]