Sloan-C Online Workshop on
Web 2.0 in Higher Education

Bit.ly "Assignment"

From the bit.ly website:

"bit.ly allows users to shorten, share, and track links (URLs). Reducing the URL length makes sharing easier. ...  Unique user-level and aggregate links are created, allowing users to view complete, real-time traffic and referrer data, as well as location and metadata. Tracking stats are available after users shorten their long links with bit.ly by clicking on the “Info+” link on bit.ly, or just adding a “+” sign to the end of any bit.ly link (for example, http://bit.ly/n0og+)."

Your "assignment" for Bit.ly is to create a free account at Bit.ly and then shorten some long hyperlinks.  It would be best to do this in conjunction with some posts to Twitter.

Bit.ly (pronounced bit-ley) is a useful tool to use in conjunction with social networking sites, such as Twitter (recall that Twitter messages can only be 140 characters in length).  Bit.ly shortens a long URL, such as:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/27/opinion/27friedman.html

and turns it into:

http://bit.ly/49knuC

This really saves a lot of characters when using Twitter!

But beyond that, Bit.ly lets the user track exactly who is clicking on the shortened link.  Go to Bit.ly and login.  View the shortened linkes you have posted.  Click on the "Info+" button

to bring up a new page:

The graphic shows the number of clicks on the shortened link by date.  Note that you also can click on the "Referrers" and "Locations" tabs to see additional information.

Specific Instructions:

Go to Bit.ly and click on the link "Sign Up" or "Sign Up for bit.ly":
 

Follow the instructions on the screen to create your free account.

Note that Bit.ly can communicate directly with Twitter.  You can enter your Twitter account information in Bit.ly as part of the process of creating your free account:

Then, when you login to Bit.ly, you can shorten a link AND post the shortened link directly into a Twitter message (a "tweet") - which is pretty slick!

Your "assignment" for the Sloan-C online workshop is to create a free account at Bit.ly and then use it to shorten some long hyperlinks.  It would be best to do this in conjunction with your posts to Twitter.


Last Updated 1 October 2009 by Burks Oakley II (oakley@uis.edu)

Copyright © 2009