When possible (i.e. when I can still locate them again, for older things that I have resurrected, and assuming they are available online and I don’t forget to create the reference to them for brand new things), I try to include links to any articles I mention in my own writing so that you can see where I get my information and/or what I am responding to. I apologize in advance if:
- A link is missing. Especially for the older things, I was not always specific enough about the title or character of the piece I was responding to that I could do a successful search for it. If the link is missing, it may merely be that I missed it when I was going through trying to update all the references; or it may be that I was unable to find it again so long after the fact.
- The links are behind a paywall. I can’t help that and I can’t argue with anyone that wants to receive remuneration for the work they put into generating and maintaining their content and their web services. The best I can say is that I provided you a pointer to it so that you can see the source of my information. How you deal with that — pay to read it or ignore it — is up to you.
- The links are no longer valid. For the major news sources, like The New York Times, that rarely happens — they are very good at keeping their archives active and available. It does, however, sometimes happen and, again, there’s nothing I can do about that. I will not, in general, keep going back through old things to re-validate links and/or to search out new ones when the old ones have gone stale. If you follow a link to nowhere — oh, well….
An irony to note: I mentioned that major news sources tend to keep their links accessible for a long time. In my experience, there is one major caveat to that: major print news sources tend to keep their links accessible; online news sources — I point to Salon.com as a particularly notable example — seem not to make much of an effort to do so. Perhaps my bias (and age) is showing, but I see that as a sign that the more traditional news organizations take their responsibility for writing “the first draft of history” much more seriously than their more contemporary counterparts. They recognize that information only leads to understanding and progress if it is allowed to accrete into thought. Ephemeral information amounts to entertainment, not the building block of wisdom.
© Copyright 2018, Augustus P. Lowell