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Short and sweet…URLs

Sometimes, URLs can be insanely long.  For example:




Yes, both real.  Both annoying.  And, if you try to email these, they will not display properly in some email clients.  Some people won’t be able to click them at all.  But, never fear…URL shortening services are here!

There are many free URL shortening services that you can easily use online.  One well known one is TinyURL.com.  You just copy and paste your long URL into a box and, with the click of a button, you have a new, short and valid URL.  The first long URL, above, becomes:


Works exactly like the long one, without breaking anyone’s email client.

What does this mean to me, Laura?

  1. There are many URL shortening services.  Pick the one you like best.
  2. If you need to send a URL via SMS, this is also very handy.
  3. Sometimes, your browser might refuse to display a page from a shortened URL.  This is usually due to the security settings being too high on the browser.
  4. If you are a Firefox user, you can a handy extension to make creating tiny URLs much simpler.


There are 4 comments

  1. I have recently received complaints from someone that her ZoneAlarm firewall flagged TinyURL as a known high-risk website which distributes spyware???

    I found that rather disturbing …

  2. @Lynne,

    That is correct…sort of 🙂 I have Zone Alarm at home and experience that myself. It’s a setting on ZA…you have to add TinyURL to the exclusion list. If you google “zone alarm tinyurl” you will see this is a common issue with Zone Alarm, rather than TinyURL being a spyware site.


  3. The main reason Zone Alarm is flagging Tinyurl is because there’s lots of folks that will “hide” a porn (or worse) website link with it. A recent feature is where you can customize the Tinyurl by adding your own description after the “/”. The add-on mentioned in the article will also allow you to mouse-over the Tinyurl link and give you the entire address in a tooltip.

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