Sunday, 4 April 2021

RETURN TO SENDER, ADDRESS UNKNOWN [290]




Here was the idea I had:

After nearly five years, I had reached the conclusion that I could use a website address that was shorter than www.dancingwiththegatekeepers.com, ideally one that used my name. This was compounded when, after describing what I wrote to someone at work, I had to write out the site address for them, instead of confirming what top-level domain followed my name, whether it was .com, .co.uk or .net. I could also do with getting some business cards printed, but that can follow later. For the record, this is not because I am phasing out “Dancing with the Gatekeepers” from my site – if something like that comes to you in a dream, you use it, and you keep it.

 

Here is where we are now:

 

I am now the owner of the address leighspence.net - entering this into your web browser will redirect you to www.dancingwiththegatekeepers.com. I chose the top-level domain .net, one of the first such domains to be introduced on 1st January 1985, because of the hard T sound making it clear to anyone who asks for my website. (The other six domains introduced onto the internet on the same day were .com, .org, .edu, .gov, .mil, and .arpa, as in “Arpanet,” the predecessor of the internet.)

 

As convenient as this sounds, the original plan was to have leighspence.net as the main address, and www.dancingwiththegatekeepers.com would be retained as a redirecting address. I hadn’t realised how that wouldn’t work.

 

I am sure that, if you have read any of my articles before, it is more because you have seen a link to it on Google, Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, rather than going straight to the website. I thought that, as I own both addresses, you could have the individual weblinks, or “metalinks,” for each individual article, remain under www.dancingwiththegatekeepers.com, while future articles would use leighspence.net in their metalinks.

 

That was naïve. Instead, changing the main address for the website broke the connection for five years of existing links, which is when I realised that these were the more important web addresses of them all.  I could have added the new address to the metalinks, but there are nearly three hundred of them, and any connections they have made with anyone will be broken by this action – it would be like rebuilding the connections I have made from scratch, and I am not prepared to do that. 

 

What I am left with is the remnants of a good idea. I guess I could copy across my work to a new website that uses leighspence.net, but that would also be starting from scratch. I don’t honestly know what the best option would be. Does anyone have any ideas? 

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