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Persistence of Web References in Scientific Research
February 2001 (vol. 34 no. 2)
pp. 26-31

Invalid URLs can lead to important data loss as cited works and research findings gradually disappear from circulation. The lack of persistence of Web references leads researchers to question whether publications should even include URL citations.

To minimize the future loss of information, the authors review new long-term strategies for managing Internet resources and suggest several ways to improve citation practices. Their analysis of references to Web resources in 270,977 computer science publications revealed that URL citations have increased, but many are now invalid. The authors were, however, able to relocate most invalid Web references using two searches. They analyzed the missing links and identified reasons why URLs become invalid.

Steve Lawrence, David M. Pennock, Gary William Flake, Robert Krovetz, Frans M. Coetzee, Eric Glover, Finn Årup Nielsen, Andries Kruger, C. Lee Giles, "Persistence of Web References in Scientific Research," Computer, vol. 34, no. 2, pp. 26-31, Feb. 2001, doi:10.1109/2.901164
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