From Seo Wiki - Search Engine Optimization and Programming Languages
|Slogan||Making long URLs usable!|
|Type of site||URL shortening|
|Created by||Kevin Gilbertson|
TinyURL is a web service that provides short aliases for redirection of long URLs. Kevin Gilbertson, a web developer, launched the service in January 2002 so that he would be able to link directly to newsgroup postings which frequently had long and cumbersome addresses.
The TinyURL homepage includes a form that's used to submit a long URL for shortening. For each URL entered, the server adds a new alias in its hashed database and returns a short URL such as
http://tinyurl.com/2unsh in the following page. If the URL has already been requested, TinyURL will return the existing alias rather than create a duplicate entry. The short URL forwards users to the long URL.
TinyURL has a downloadable browser toolbar.  Also, TinyURL offers an API that allows applications to automatically create short URLs. This is done by simply reading the result returned from
Short URL aliases are seen as useful because they are easier to write down, remember or pass around, are less error-prone to write, and also fit where space is limited such as IRC channel topics, email signatures, microblogs, certain printed newspapers (such as the .net Magazine or even Nature), and email clients that impose line breaks on messages at a certain length. People posting on Twitter make extensive use of shortened URLs to keep their tweets within the service-imposed 140 character limit.
Starting in 2008, TinyURL allows users to create custom, more meaningful aliases. This means that a user can create descriptive URLs rather than a randomly generated address. For example,
Shortened URLs introduce potential problems such as linkrot and obscurity concerns, which have led to criticism of the use of TinyURL.
Early on, the resulting URL aliases of the service were predictable, and were exploited by users to create vulgar associations. The URL aliases dick and cunt were made to redirect to the White House web sites of former U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney and former Second Lady Lynne Cheney, respectively. After the inauguration of Vice President Joe Biden, the aliases were changed to redirect to the White House web sites of Joe Biden and Jill Biden.
Beginning on June 15, 2006, the aliases redirected to a preview page that contained the following disclaimer:
"This TinyURL was created by a user of our service back when the creation of the IDs for the TinyURL were sequential and predictable. This TinyURL in no way represents the beliefs of the people who bring you the TinyURL service and we apologize if this has brought offense to anyone."
In February 2009, redirection was terminated and the following error message appeared:
The popularity of TinyURLs influenced the creation of at least 100 similar websites. Most are simply domain alternatives whilst some offer additional features.
The TinyURL method of allocating shorter web addresses has inspired an action known as TinyURL-whacking. Random letters and numbers can be placed after the first forward slash in an attempt to hit interesting sites without knowing in advance what they will be.
- ↑ http://tinyurl.com/#toolbar, TinyURL bookmarklet
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 "TinyURL preview feature for the URL alias dick". Archived from the original on 2006-06-15. http://www.webcitation.org/5eqwBzBgi. Retrieved 2009-02-25.
- ↑ "TinyURL preview feature for the URL alias dick". Archived from the original on 2009-02-25. http://www.webcitation.org/5equZdhmc. Retrieved 2009-02-25.
- ↑ 90+ URL Shortening Services, Mashable.Com, 8 January 2008, page 84
- ↑ tinyurl whacking - full of grandiose schemes
- ↑ New Scientist, vol. 179, issue 2404, 19 July 2003, page 84
- ↑ Honey, I Shrunk the URL, Wired News
- How to convert long URLs to TinyURLs, Digital Journal
- Tool to verify a short URL against the Google Safe Browser API and Site Advisor
- Preview shortened URLscs:Tinyurl