When I was writing about the shortlink “invasion” by WordPress a few days ago, I put up this footnote:

And don’t get me started on the fact that they use rel=”shortlink” instead of rev=”canonical”

Well, Dirk got me started so I began to do a bit of research.

I’ve always liked the rev=”canonical” idea – it was proposed by pretty smart people and happy-making sites like Flickr and Dopplr implemented it pretty fast. So there was basically no reason for me not to install the WordPress plugin and happily use the bookmarklet that gives me the rev=”canonical” short url.
All of this happened about a year ago and I liked it and then basically forgot about it. I sure remembered there were some other ideas and naming schemes proposed, but all in all I was pretty sure I was betting on a safe horse. So when I saw that WordPress would support the rel=”shortlink” option, I was a bit confused and a tiny bit annoyed. And I looked around a bit and found this rather dramatically titled, yet smart article on why the shortlink-version is preferable to the canonical one. And of course, there is also a bookmarklet for that.

I’ll have to dig into that – at the moment I’m using the rev=”canonical” plugin with one short domain, yet I mostly send out the tweets about my blog posts with another one, that I have mapped to

I’m not quite satisfied with the whole setup right now and since the trusty old Twitter Tools will stop working soon anyway, I might need to come up with some good idea on how to handle shortlinks.

All your shortlinks are belong to us.

If you’re using WordPress, you might not be in charge of your shortlinks anymore: is the url shortener of You might have seen it when someone posted a link to his blog post on twitter. This is all nice and dandy for a hosted solution like Now they found a sneaky little trick to even get blogs not hosted with them to use They changed their widely popular stats plugin to add the url. Without any visible settings to turn it on or off, it’s basically by default opt-in.1 And besides one line in the release notes, I could not see any communication about this “shortlink high-jacking:”

Add shortlink generator. Now shortlinks are available on the Edit Post screen from a button next to View Post.


  1. And don’t get me started on the fact that they use rel=”shortlink” instead of rev=”canonical” []