Think tiny

This paragraph from a recent News & Observer story about crime statistics illustrates the problem with Web addresses in print. Many of them are cumbersome.

Pity the poor readers who see this story, clip it out and bring it to their computer to find out what crimes have been reported in their neighborhoods. What are the odds that they will type the address correctly?

Here’s one solution to the problem: Use TinyURL. This site will create a pithy “nickname” for a long Web address. Simply copy and paste the unwieldy URL into Tiny URL, and it instantly does the work for you at no cost.

Here’s what it came up with for the URL you see in the clip above:

http://tinyurl.com/ysa9cq

This address may not be as memorable as CNN.com, but it’s more useful to readers who want to type it into their Web browsers. And it takes up less space in print and doesn’t break oddly from line to line.

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