Follow the Bouncing Link Attribution

It’s good to see a bit more of attribution by linking, or coined here as “Linktribution” in blog posts. Yet, I find it somewhat funny, and a bit disconcerting, that people are so rapid blogging that they are just attributing it back to some other blog post that is referring to another blog post …

So I am sometimes collecting examples of long back link chains.

So in today’s activity, there is a lot of folks blogging about the Map of Online Communities — its a gem and a half, and you betcha its appearing in one or all of my upcoming presentations.

Map of Online Communities by Randall Munroe, Linktribution to xkcd

Isn’t it a beauty? And its being blogged back and forth. I saw about 10 mentions i my RSS reader in the last 3 days (my first encounter came via a Tweet from D’Arcy).

But follow this trail….

  1. Stephen Downes blogs about it today but linking it back to ….
  2. Sailing By the Sound’s post on Social Networking and Responsibility who links it back as …
  3. (Image courtesy of apophenia :: making connections where none previously existed) in some way breaking the chain to the link is to the main entrance to danah boyd’s blog, and thus of no value once she adds a few new posts, but is actually situated…
  4. on a post at apophenia on maps + tech companies where finally we have the source linked correctly as…
  5. XKCD has the best map today”

That’s a lot of hops to get to an actual source.

Maybe I am splitting blog hairs (or hares), or just need to get outside and be lass cranky, but I cannot re-iterate enough that one of the the unseen values we add when we blog are the links we create to relevant content. Proper links improve search results, increase the value of the network we create. I doubt anyone reading this would refuse to get proper attribution for their efforts, and surely, the creator of this lovely map deserves that credit.

Link, link often, and link to the source.

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An early 90s builder of the web and blogging Alan Levine barks at CogDogBlog.com on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person.


  1. Heck, no one should ever take what I saw for a rule! But in this case, the credit is for a great graphic, which to me goes to the source. If one of the blog posts were what I was referencing it would be different.

    Links are what count! Link ’em all!

  2. My own rule of thumb is to mention in the post where I found it, but link back to the original. I usually embed a link on the graphic to its origin. Seems to work, FWIW. With Flickr photos, it’s actually a term of use to link back to the original.

  3. I try to credit both the proximate link (where I got started — like here, in this caes) and the ultimate link (the source — like the map). Of course, sometimes I skip around by opening links in new windows, and at times I don’t remember where I came from. Generally, though, I like to have the link and the attribution, both for my own sake and to give credit where due.

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