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Thread: FAQ: How to Create Links and Why We Don't Allow Shorteners

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  1. #1
    Herder of Hamsters AW Admin's Avatar
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    FAQ: How to Create Links and Why We Don't Allow Shorteners

    Inserting or Creating a Link On Absolute Write

    There are two basic methods on AW for inserting or creating a link to a page on AW, or to a page on a site other than AW.

    The first, best way links text that names or describes the link to URL or Web address.

    Example: This the Absolute Write Blog.

    The second less attractive (but possibly easier) way inserts the actual address of the site or page.
    Example: This is the Absolute Write Blog http://absolutewrite.com


    To Create a Link: Method One The Best Way

    Copy the URL, that is the Web address of the page or site you want to link to.

    1. In the Post where you want to insert the link, Select the text you want to make clickable and go to your URL or Web address.
    2. Click the Link tool
    3. You will see a text field instructing you to "Please enter the URL of your link:"
    4. Enter the address of your linkby pasting the copied link or entering it by hand in the field.
    5. Click OK
    6. You should see your linked text looking like this:

      [URL="http://absolutewrite.com"]This the Absolute Write Blog[/URL]

    7. Click Submit.


    vBulletin, the AW forum software, will automatically create the link when you click Submit, removing the brackets so it is underlined and in blue, like the other links on the AW Watercooler.


    To Create A Link: Method 2 The Fast and Easy Way

    1. Copy the URL, that is the Web address of the page or site you want to link to.
    2. Insert your cursor in your Post where you want the link to appear .
    3. Paste your link.
    4. You will see the address but vBulletin, the software the runs the forum, will automagically turn the address itself into a link so it is underlined and in blue, like the other links on the AW Watercooler.


    Please do not Use TinyURL or Bitly or Other Link / URL Shorteners

    If you're not sure what a URL Shortener is, this WikiPedia entry explains URL Shortening.


    This is why we ask you not to use them on AW:

    1. They shorten the URL by fetching the real URL, the long one, in the background. You don't know where you are being taken, and it is conceivably possible that a shortened URL that was fine when it was posted two years ago now goes somewhere else entirely.
    2. When the URL is shortened, you cannot easily determine what the URL is, or where you are going.
    3. Many spammers deliberately use a link shortener to hide the real destination.
    4. Some screen readers, used by people who are blind or have difficulties reading a screen will skip shortened URLs entirely. This is frustrating and unfair.


    If you see a post with a shortened URL please use the Report Post button to let the mod know there's a shortened URL that needs to be fixed, or PM a Mod for the particular forum, or let MacAllister or me know.

    We'll ask the member to expand the url, or edit the post to expand the URL if we need to because the member can't or doesn't know how. It's not a the end of the world, but it makes AW a safer and more courteous place if we don't use shortened URLs.


    AW reserves the right to ask posters to post the full URL, and may edit posts to insert the full URL.


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