When you’ve been blogging for almost 10 years, you end up linking to a lot of things; apparently, my blog posts and your comments add up to over 10,000 links. I know this because I installed the Broken Link Checker plugin for WordPress.
I also know that there are over 2,000 broken links on here, again, thanks to the plugin. This is to be expected, especially on the older posts from the earlier part of the previous decade. On the one hand, 20% of links no longer working sounds like a lot, but considering I haven’t been blogging so much over the last 3 years as I did in the early days, I wouldn’t say that was too bad.
I have started to go through all 2,000 broken links (the plugin makes this relatively straightforward) to see if any can be fixed; especially those which should be pointing at my own blog entries – thankfully, most of these work or at least redirect correctly. But the majority of broken links are to other web sites, which seem to fall into one of the following categories:
- Sites which are still active, but the permalink syntax has changed (usually because of a change in CMS, and it’s made me realise just how many former Movable Type users now run WordPress)
- Sites where the author is still writing but hasn’t retained any old content
- Sites that have disappeared into the ether and either no longer work or have been taken over by someone else
I’m finding quite of the first category and where possible fixing the URLs, but there are a lot where the content that the link points to no longer exists. These links are being deleted and will show a
strikethrough. I’ve chugged through a few hundred links but there are still over 1,700 to process, which I’ll do as and when I get time.