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[liberationtech] Stanford Bitly Enterprise Account

Jan Schaumann jschauma at
Fri Nov 16 07:54:54 PST 2012

Nick Daly <nick.m.daly at> wrote:
> Best I can tell, the only reason they're popular is because
> microblogging sites count links against your 140-character limit.
> Now, if only Twitter[0] used footnotes[1] and didn't count the URL
> against the message, they'd disappear.

All links in Twitter are automatically wrapped in their own link
shortener[0] and thus of a fixed size[1] as far as the 140 char limit goes.
(This has the funny side-effect that sometimes you have a link that gets
_longer_ when wrapped by

This was introduced a while ago[2], but is now the case everywhere.

I don't know if other microblogging sites use similar mandatory link
wrapping, but I always understood one of the primary benefits to be
central collection of statistics (which is why is so popular, I



[1] 20 chars for HTTP, 21 for HTTPS;

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