Why hotlinking to a RePEc service makes sense

June 27, 2008

Hotlinking is the practice of linking to a web page deep in a web site, instead of its front page. This practice is discouraged by many news sites, both because they prefer users to browse through the site and because links may become obsolete.

At RePEc, we actually encourage hotlinking. Links in RePEc services are designed to stay current (in principle). Also, instead of linking to a PDF file on a researcher’s web page, which may disappear, abstract pages on EconPapers or IDEAS are much more stable. In addition, these abstract pages may provide links to other versions of the paper. This proves particularly useful if the user does not have access to a password protected article from a commercial publisher, or if the user wishes to know whether the paper has been published. Other links on the abstract page can also be valuable, like those to author profiles, references, citations and related works. Finally, authors always appreciate when paper downloads are counted towards their statistics. Indeed, RePEc can only monitor traffic routed through its services.

Therefore, we encourage hotlinks to RePEc services on blogs, online syllabi, personal web pages, online bibliographies, etc.