Thomas Crampton

Social Media in China and across Asia

Reporter to NY Times Publisher: You Erased My Career

May 12, 2009

May 9, 2009

Dear Mr. Sulzberger,

Hell hath no fury like a reporter deleted.

I have a major personal and professional gripe against The New York Times and the International Herald Tribune.

For more than a decade, as you know, I enjoyed a wonderful and globe-trotting career at both newspapers. I would recommend anyone to work for these publications. You were a great employer, I had great colleagues and both publications are great to read.

That said, your normally web-savvy team just made one of the most boneheaded moves done by a major news website since the dawn of the Internet.

This image - All that remains online from my Sudan reports.

This image - All that remains online from my Sudan reports.

When you merged the IHT and NY Times websites about one month ago I saw real logic and had high hopes. The NY Times has been leading innovation in online journalism for quite some time, while IHT.com was run on a shoestring budget out of Paris, by a feverishly overworked team.

Despite their small budget and small team, however, the IHT website managed to build an online global media powerhouse often outranking the NY Times website on international stories in Google News.

The IHT website earned an ever-increasing pagerank due to all of the blogs and sites linking to stories there. (Based on the number of Internet pages linking back to a site, pagerank starts at 1 and rises to 10. A page with a Google rank of 5 will show up higher than a page with a Google rank of 3 and the IHT.com grew to match nytimes.com at a Google rank of 9. You can check pagerank of any site here.)

So, what did the NY Times do to merge these sites?

They killed the IHT and erased the archives.

1- Every one of the links ever made to IHT stories now points back to the generic NY Times global front page.

2- Even when I go to the NY Times global page, I cannot find my articles. In other words, my entire journalistic career at the IHT – from war zones to SARS wards – has been erased.

On a personal level I am horrified that I can no longer see all my stories. The IHT logo on this blog used to link to a search of the IHT website for my articles. On a professional level, I am appaled that the NY Times would kill all the links back to the IHT website. Imagine the power of combining two sites with a Google rank of 9 instead of killing one.

Also, imagine all the frustrated potential readers who click on a link to a specific story only to find themselves landing on the generic NY Times global front page.

The only way readers can find the IHT stories is by going to places where they were copied and reposted or Google cache. Is that a good for readers (or shareholders)?

In conclusion, Mr. Sulzberger, please do what you can to resurrect my articles onto the Internet.

Failing that, could I please drop by sometime to download a digital copy of my articles for my own reference?

In advance, thank you for your help on this.

Sincerely,

Thomas Crampton

UPDATE: Thank you to those who took the time to search for my articles.

While you may have found 3,510 of my articles that were also published by the NY Times, my articles in the IHT are still not there. You will note that most of the articles by me available on the NYT site are during 2004 or after, which is when the two papers became closer.

Here are two links to test:

First story: http://www.iht.com/articles/2002/05/07/t1_24.php
Second Story: http://www.iht.com/articles/2002/05/07/a4_12.php

These were a scoop I wrote about a Malaysian official who was acting as UN representative for political reconciliation at the same time as doing business with the ruling generals. (IE: Somewhat of a conflict of interest.) I would think it better if such stories were still available to people clicking through from sites like Asia Sentinel, where I found these links.

Here is what the NYT says when you click on the links:


Here is what happens when you search for my name and the Malaysian official’s name:

UPDATE2: Some choice stories of other publishers doing the same thing.

UPDATE3: Wikipedia is now grappling with the problem of all the dead links to IHT stories. In a separate posting, Jimmy Wales, the Wikipedia founder, explains in a video interview with me the issues at hand.

UPDATE4: Now have an estimate of just how much the bad links are costing NYT shareholders. According to calculations by Rick Burnes of the Global Tech Products blog:

From a business perspective, the NYT is throwing away money — at least $100,000 every month the links are broken. According to Compete.com, IHT.com was getting over 1.5 million visitors/month before it shut down. If a third of those visitors were from search and direct old links, 500,000 visitors a month are hitting the dead end in the image above, instead of the page they were looking for. To buy that traffic from Google at $.20/click, you’d have to pay $100,000 a month. Add that $100,000 to the value of the SEO authority IHT.com accrues from its 3.9 million inbound links, and you have a sense of the money The Times is leaving on the table.

UPDATE 5: I have now closed off comments to this posting because the NY Times responded. Have a look at the follow-up posting and feel free to leave a comment there.

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Discussion

Comments are disallowed for this post.

  • Always nice to see Disqus keeping an eye on Disqus ... Thanks Giannii (You guys rock!)

    ----------------------------------------------------------
    scratch and dent appliances | craftsman sears

  • I have shut off comments on this thread, but feel free to leave them at a follow up posting in which The New York Times responded to this blog posting:

    http://www.thomascrampton.com/...

  • Warren Smith

    How good of a journalist can you possibly be? The title of this blog post reads "You erased my career" when infact, all they (NYT) have done is remove content from one site (IHT) immediately and published it on another site (NYT) over the course of a few weeks (which considering the amount of content, is pretty reasonable for an embedded system).

    I have always had this idealistic image of a journalist being a person who examined all the facts before jumping to conclusions, but in this case, you didn't and therefor aren't that person. I can clearly see in an image above in which the NYT communicate their intension to make all IHT articles from 1991 onwards, available on their site sometime in the near future (something that I can assume has been completed since the test links you provided now work).

    As for "Imagine the power of combining two sites with a Google rank of 9....", it doesn't work like that, the amount of inbound links those sites have combined is not enough to push it to the maximum page rank of 10, so in this case, 9 + 9 just equals... 9. The only increase the NYT could hope for is in traffic generated by the search tail, and to exploit that, they needed to move the IHT content to their domain, as well as provide the redirecting of links... something they had already planned and were in the stage of executing when you wrote this blog post. DING DING DING

    So with that said, might I offer a bit of advice? Forget worrying about what capable news organizations are doing with their content, if you want to look good to future employers and not look like a bit of a numpty to the general population, erase THIS article from YOUR website because it probably does your reputation more harm than good (especially if you are going to continue to paint yourself as a serious journalist who is digitally capable, as opposed to another sarcy blogger with bi-polar)

  • Anony Mouse

    All seems to be in order now and both of the test links above work as expected. I guess this was just a premature rant whilst the content was still being integrated into the NYT site.

    Rome wasn't built in a day.

  • E Ploetz

    The links to the two stories above seem to be working ... Are your clips back online?

  • Though this is a sad affair, it has inspired a blog post/

    I spent the morning having immense fun writing it, as it evolved into a memoir about AJ Liebling:

    http://bit.ly/wroughting-wrath

    thanks,dave
    http://daveshields.wordpress.c...

  • ex0

    Slashdot linking to this story now. Best of luck getting this resolved.

  • David

    Those two links now work. Problem solved?

  • davidgurvich

    Both links seem to connect to the correct stories at the NYTimes website.

  • Once you do get access to the clips, here is a really good article on building an electronic clip file:

    http://www.niemanlab.org/2009/...

  • Ivan

    Waaaaaaaaa Whaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

    What percentage of people read old news stories? I don't know the answer, but I would be surprised if the total was more than 3%. Why put in so much effort into articles people will not read? Focus on the future, not on the past.

    How can you not have your own backups? I have multiple backups of almost everything I have ever done: writing, music, software. I keep a DVD in a bank deposit box as well.

  • Brian Robinson

    Lots and lots of people -- many more than 3% -- read old stories through Google search and other avenues. Plus, if you want context, you need to link to those older stories. That's what completes a story online.

    So it doesn't matter if he does or does not have things backed up. You still need stories to be present in archived form online, where people can reach them.

    If you focus on the future without knowing the past, you know nothing.

  • This is tough - I hope they manage to plug things in order and unearth those buried treasures.

  • It's annoying, but fairly common, when pubs you've written for delete your digital archives. Management, servers, systems do change though, and uploading older content is often not a priority; publications also close.

    I learned long ago to always do a "save webpage as complete .html file" and post it to my own server and site. Inconvenient, but safe.

  • Sony Sasankan

    Noam Chomsky was right all along....

  • Gabby

    Time will tell if the articles move over to the NYT. I see no mention of a "time frame" just the usual ambiguous "your patience ... as we complete the transition." blah blah blah. Sorry, am I a tad cynical here? Keep on them.

  • chris

    sounds a bit precious to me. why am i supposed to care exactly???

  • Dear Thomas

    I understan d your feelings. I thought that I had a good career as an international journalist at Danish Radio and Television until I got fired - for standing for parlament for the liberal party. Now I do not exist
    . Very strange feeling.

  • E

    Poul,

    What the heck is a journalist doing standing for elected office? They were right to fire you. It's a serious dent to a news organization's efforts to appear neutral when one of its paid employees runs for office under the banner of a political party. Most news organizations I've worked for have policies expressly forbidding it. I mean, I'm sympathetic to your losing your job and all, but I can't think of one credible news organization who wouldn't do the same thing as Danish Radio and TV.

  • onemanbandwidth

    As a creative writer, critic and essayist for small presses (some larger than others) I've grown accustomed to seeing my work disappear form public view due to costs cuts, changes in editorial staff, and such. Many of the pieces lost took weeks, even years, to produce. One of my books, published by a small press that was a down-line victim of the death of small literary bookstores brought to us courtesy of Amazon, Barnes and Noble and the other illiterates who have kindled the dumbing down of literature in America.
    One of the answers for we creative types has been project development like the Poetry House which now archives small press works. Online, of course, I have pulled many articles out of cyberspace via the Wayback Machine.

    Since Publishers are not bright enough to see the value in archiving content (SEO backlinks, history...) then maybe it is time we found a way to aggregate content ourselves. Perhaps we can start by negotiating a delimiting date on copyright? Most creative writers get rights reverted to them after specified periods. Maybe a retrospective online paper that prints past news and columns from that day in history with contributions from folks like you....

    Ezra Pound, though arguably crazy, wrote a work a day for a year and then burned everything for "discipline" and o prove that the creative well never runs dry. But you were living witnesses to history: the stuff Wikipedia should be made of....

  • davidkirkpatrick

    Tom-- a sobering note. Something similar happened to me when Fortune merged with CNNMoney.com.

    I had been writing my online-only Fast Forward column since early 2002, and when the switch was made at the beginning of 2006, all the links were broken and there was no effort made to republish the columns at the new combined site. Today the column archive at http://money.cnn.com/magazines... does not go back beyond 2006. This happened also to a couple of other Fortune online columnists as well. I

    It was presented as a cost-saving measure. Apparently the labor required to rebuild the pages on the new site was considered unjustified. But it's often been pointed out to me that if you believe in any version of the Long Tail argument it is shortsighted, even from a cold-blooded financial perspective. Fortune and now the Times are losing the opportunity to present ads on a lot of very specific articles, which might not be often viewed but which almost certainly sometimes would be.

    And of course, as you note, it's rude and journalistically disrespectful.

  • The fact that the NYT didn't setup 301 redirects from the IHT articles to their new locations is bad.

    The fact that nobody from the NYT is commenting in this thread, explaining themselves, is really bad.

  • Mark Turner

    You have my sympathies. I would be horrified if this happened to me - and it is indeed a wake-up call.

    To Julien, I suspect you are missing something inside, but more to the point, whatever happened to the longtail theory here? These things have value long into the future.

    Furthermore, this amounts to the erasure of written history, a sad thing to do indeed.

  • diana

    Julien,

    I second the "you are an idiot" opinion. since this industry is in such troubled times and everything is moving online, the web managers should at least back-up their actions.
    paper is almost gone and the online work is deleted. how do you identify yourself as a journalist if nobody can read your work?

  • pbhj

    >>> [H]ow do you identify yourself as a journalist if nobody can read your work?

    Maybe send them a copy?

  • Rider

    I third the "you are an idiot comment." The NYT is supposed to be a paper of record. You can find news archives dating back to 1851 on its Web site!

    Mr. "hahaha" Julien reads like he is enormously stupid, not to mention unsympathetic, unjustifiably condescending, and otherwise representative of a substandard class of Internet reader/commenter that unfortunately seems all to common.

  • Rider

    Corrections: (since I am in the company of editors :)

    I third the "you are an idiot" comment. The NYT is supposed to be a paper of record. You can find news archives dating back to 1851 on its Web site!

    Mr. "hahaha" Julien reads like he is enormously stupid, not to mention unsympathetic, unjustifiably condescending, and otherwise representative of a substandard class of Internet reader/commenter that unfortunately seems all too common.

    I will add that Julien missed the point entirely with his blunt, misguided wit fueled by other peoples' legitimate troubles, by failing to see it is not about someone's life being over, but a sizable piece of their work having gone missing. Julien: writers need these kinds of links to secure credibility and future work. You should not have to post to your own blog (a secondary source) or pay for it (Nexus).

  • there is a solution -- to post all yours articles at yours personal blog. One friend of mine -- Belarus journalist do that for few years already... Me personally just startet to post my articles... yes.. sites are not everlasting... Recently my weekly site had problems with account and the site was unacessible... So I felt as if somebody deleted 10 years of my life... Happily they restaured is so far -- www.br.minsk.by. Actually it's the fullest version of latest Belarus history --- 1997-2008...

  • Well, anyone on Nexis can still find all your pieces (for a price).

  • Peter Bale

    Tom
    Your poor thing. Haven't seen you since KM wedding in HKG.
    Same archive thing happened to me when the hapless Andrew Gowers made the gormless then and even more so in retrospect decision to close FTMarketWatch.com and merge it with the FT.com. Gone. Two years work. Erased.

  • Los Lobos

    Julien, you are an idiot. It's not about sites getting a new look, it's not about "keeping my xxxxx online".

    In a larger context, it's a problem called "linkrot". This basically breaks up the small hypertext system called the internet. See the Wikipedia reference above.

  • Julien

    hahaha guys, people won't keep your work forever online !!! hahahaha it's so funny !!! You life is not ending because your articles are not online anymore... Many websites get a fresh look and old news are old news, sometimes you just can't keep them on the new website, probably because nobody cares about past articles.

  • i can't believe this is happening. what would be even more scandalous, was if they did not restore it after this affair has become public

  • This happened to me too. I am not a NYTimes reporter, but a new(ish) journalist. My first full-time reporting job, from 2007-08, was at a small paper that recently "updated" its Web site, and now the 300+ articles I wrote for them are gone forever, as are many of my best clips that I would have shown future employers. It's really lame. I empathize.

  • edit

    moved comment where it belongs, below as a reply

  • Aoede

    Mr. Crampton, if you still have the URLs, then searching those specific URLs in the Wayback Machine should help. I doubt that a newspaper would antispider its webpage.

  • I think archive.org is wonderful. Just don't rely on it to keep everything. I used to be a totally committed believer until I started clicking on some links on records back to 1996, e.g. a whole documentation I did on an Australian Federal Election, based on my own laborious research comparing the arts policies of the different parties. It's gone and I don't have a copy. On archive.org, at that link, as with many other pages from older versions of the site, what comes up is:

    Not in Archive.

    No archived versions of the page you requested are available. If the page is still available on the Internet, we will begin archiving it during our next crawl.

    You may want to:

    * Search for all pages on the site webarts.net.au/
    * Try a different page address, at top

  • Seriously? You just wrote an entire blog post talking about why you think the NY Times should make archived stories from the IHT available and then at the bottom of the post you link to an image of the NY Times web site where they very clearly say that they are already planning to restore archived IHT articles dating back to 1991...

    Really? You didn't catch that they were already doing what you spent this blog post asking them to do?

    No wonder the public has no empathy for professional journalists.

  • mlstotts

    Business Opportunity: link archiving service for online journalists that captures public and subscription based content from whichever URLs they publish to AND that captures the deep web linking to the articles overtime AND that uses web metrics (clicks, trackbacks, embeds, etc) to demonstrate the scoop-value, breaking-news-value and insight-value of the content created. With archives and metrics, the Top to 96th percentile of journos will incorporate and become their own publishers, the 90th to 95th percentile will work at top national pubs/blogs, the 89th through 80th will work at top regional and 2nd tier nat'l...and so on. Associated Content is kind of already doing this from the netroots up. Top journos would be smart to get behind whomever brings a solution like this to market.

  • Agreed. We had something on this on Gawker couple of months ago (right as it was happening)

    http://gawker.com/5189745/time...

  • Bummer to read that Thomas, hope their gradual work on the archives does at least make your articles findable again even if the historical links all 404.

    And a belated congrats on your new (old now) position! dbTwang (guitar social network and more) which you interviewed Fintan about in Kilkenny, Ireland is going well and should be ready for influx into closed beta by the end of July

    keith

  • this is unconscionable on a number of levels, not the least of which (in this economy) being the waste of what could have otherwise been an significant page rank boost. (what g1smd said)

  • That's a shame. Migrating content should be quite easy for an organization with a good tech team. After it's shifted over, they can set up a script that redirects all the old IHT links to the new version somewhere on the IHT website. Very standard practice.

    Maybe they're still planning on doing so, I'm sure they have the old IHT databases sitting around.

  • Jim

    301 redirect?? I know there is at least one guy at NYT capable of it. Sorry to hear this

  • g1smd

    I doubt they would take their entire printed-on-paper archive, pile it up in the street, and set fire to it, so deleting a whole domain full of online-content seems like complete and utter madness.

    Newspapers can no longer be relied on to keep a record of what has happened in the world, if they treat their own content with such utter contempt.

    If this stuff has truly been deleted, then further words fail me.

  • This is really touching.

    In my opinion, NYT, should keep IHT's site up until they have the archives complete.

    It makes no sense, even leaving ethics over the piano, there is no good idea to replace the content people are looking for with a company's logo. It would actually hurt you company's image with a frustrating user experience.

    I hope this to be solved soon.

    Cheer up.

  • This is crazy and sad. Even if they do intend to move IHT stuff over to NYT, this is a ridiculous way of doing it. You switch off an old destination after a new one is ready - not when you supposedly start moving stuff over to the new destination.

    Hope you manage to locate your articles soon.

  • pendolino

    what about wayback machine and internet archive (http://www.archive.org/web/web... i've used these to search through dead websites succesfully a few times.

    i was also surprised to see those dead links since i had bookmarked quite a few of those articles as an IHT reader. luckily i also usually clipped those articles that i found to be interesting and that were quite a few while feeling at the time that something like this could easily happen.

    if you're using a mac, the save to PDF feature is brilliant for this stuff especially when you're on a browser.

  • @Matt

    That doesn't solve my problem, but really neat to see it in action! Never visited archive.org before. Fascinating. Thanks for that!

  • Matt

    Well it's a pain, but nothing you wrote will be gone, it should all be in the Internet Archive. Go to http://web.archive.org/web/*/h... for snapshots of iht.com going back to 1996

  • I posted this comment on Digg http://digg.com/d1qjkE but am repeating it here because it seems to highlight small-scale but technically adept methods of managing news, vs larger corporate efforts:

    "I quite like the method to digging this story. The author is an established journalist that's taken the web by the horns (or plugs, or something) with his own blog and related web work.

    I saw this story through an aggregated RSS feed in Google Reader linked to by someone I follow on Twitter, then (just getting into Digg) I Dugg it. It seems a very natural social communication of a story.

    Contrast this to a slow/botched takeover of the IHT database where the information, URLs and associated information is plainly there in a series of tables waiting to be merged in a simple, straightforward process.

    It is stunning this hasn't/cannot be done. Almost as stunning as the NYT being unable to generate a 'related stories' block next to any article on their site. Perhaps the NYT web infrastructure is a bit of a red herring?"

  • This is really sad, Thomas. I hope you could at least keep the paper articles. When I worked as a journalist, my articles were not on the Internet.

  • @david

    I waited a month before writing this. I am skeptical at this point that they are going to fix all the links. The best we can hope for at this point is that they add the IHT stories to the archive.

    All the links in to the IHT stories, however, will be lost. At one point there were nearly 1 million links onto the IHT website, someone has told me.

  • And most of those links were likely from bloggers... the bane of NYT.

    They aren't trying to kill IHT, they're trying to make bloggers and blogging look disrespectful.

  • Thomas, my heart is with you. I know how it feels. It happened to me one year after I joined The Jerusalem Post and just after Israel withdrew its forces and civilians from the Gaza Strip. Some fantastic stories and all the links across the net to what I wrote are now dead...

    Orly Halpern
    www.twitter.com/jerusalemburea...

  • Uhm. It does say they are working on it.

    http://query.nytimes.com/searc...

  • That is simply beyond horrifying. Condolences.

  • @Jeremiah
    Thanks for your comment!

    Never have I asserted ownership over these articles. I was a staff correspondent at the IHT and NYT when I wrote them and they clearly have ownership/copyright, etc.

    It is fully within their rights to delete the articles referenced (and all my remaining articles) from the web and their archives.

    I think it makes no sense for them to delete them and kill the links, however, which is why I wrote this posting.

  • Thanks Thomas for writing about this. Breaking the internet (removing pages and links) is a pretty harmful thing to do to the web, speaking holistically. However, I am surprised you think the articles are "yours" but in reality they belong to the company you were employed under. If they were truly yours and under your possession, you should post your backups to your blog

  • C'mon, Jeremiah...how about grokking the spirit and not the letter of this post? The point is much more about a) the dead linkage, and b) his ability to reference them as past work. Regardless of "ownership", he did write them; they are indicative of his ability as a writer and journalist, proof of his prior work history, etc.

    For someone who recently posted about "why physical media is archaic", this comment doesn't seem very deeply thought out. You're seriously more interested here in who can assert copyright over the articles than whether or not the URLs still properly resolve at a news organization? And without even considering the secondary affects (as noted in Thomas' followup post about Wikipedia cites to IHT).

  • Hm...this "Jeremiah Owyang" account just lost it's image icon, and is now showing up as completely unverified in Disqus (happened while I was posting previous comment). I hope that means this isn't actually Jeremiah...if so, I apologize for directing ire your way! Comments still apply whoever did post that, though. (trying to search through Disqus now to see if I can determine what's up with that account...).

  • This is probably why so many would-be journalists have turned to blogging. You have more control over your destiny---and can ensure that old links redirects when content is moved between domains or content management systems.

    I would try to contact Khoi Vinh of subtraction.com. He's the design director of nytimes.com and might be able to offer some insight

  • cm

    Not to be mean, but it's the fate of most working stiffs that the fruits of their labors are subject to their employer's/client's control and whims, including the right of obliteration, and in exchange for that they are paid wages, as opposed to royalties. The difference to artists/publicists is largely that in most professions you don't build a "portfolio" of your works beyond claims on the resume and references from professional associates.

  • Vonskippy

    So you're a "professional" writer and you don't have copies of all your published works? What journalism school did you sleep thru?

  • Nick

    Well, it's the NYT. All the news that Sulzberger (who, despite being the heir to the throne of the NYT still couldn't get into an Ivy League university, a feat even Bush managed) feels like printing!

  • The message says "We are in the process of moving IHT articles dating back to 1991 over to NYTimes.com", so unless that's a lie, it sounds like your old articles will be available at some point on the NYT website.

    Of course, as you say, all those links to your old articles are now effectively broken unless NYTimes comes up with a way to forward all the IHT links to the replacement articles, which is a big if..

    At first glance this definitely sounds like a high level marketing decision made without the right inputs/without consulting the right people.

  • omg. what idiots. seriously. and they wonder why they're falling behind.

    i hope you're able to get this corrected.

  • A few updates that may be useful:

    @Mark Plattner:

    Thank you (and to all others) who took the trouble to search for my articles.

    Unfortunately, those are only the articles that were also run in the New York Times and just a fraction of those I wrote. Please notice that the vast majority in the list posted here were in 2004 - when I was actually writing at the NY Times - or afterwards when the two newsrooms were merged.

    @David M Bigler
    I do hope that they implement a "smart redirect" as mentioned below. If they do, of course I will update the posting!

    @bigyaz
    Yes, of course I checked within the IHT and waited for more than a month after the problem started. I also was in contact with fellow reporters and editors within the IHT and NYT who are similarly frustrated.

  • Facebook User

    Time did the very same thing two years ago when it took the Asiaweek archives offline. Today, if anybody wanted to read about the Asian financial crisis of 1997-98 in the hope of learning lessons from that period that might be applied to today's global economic turmoil, he would not be able to access any of Asiaweek's excellent coverage online. Nobody can now access online any of Asiaweek's outstanding coverage of Southeast Asia, particularly Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines. Whatever you might think about the quality of Asiaweek, it's a crime against knowledge, scholarship, and the public's need to know and be informed. This is all very tragic - misguided decisions by New York-centric media bureaucrats whose careers are probably soon to be deleted just as ruthlessly.

  • Asiaweek alumnus

    Time did the same thing about two years ago to Asiaweek archives. Now, if anybody would like to read about the Asian financial crisis in the hope of learning lessons from that time that might apply to the current global economic crisis, he would not be able to access any of that excellent coverage. Asiaweek's excellent coverage of Southeast Asia, particularly Malaysia, the Philippines and Indonesia, has been taken offline and may even be lost. Whatever you might have thought about th.e quality of Asiaweek, this is a crime against knowledge perpetrated by New York-centric media bureaucrats whose careers are soon to be deleted just as ruthlessly.

  • capnmarrrrk

    Newsbank shows

    # November 2004 (1)
    # October 2004 (5)
    # September 2004 (14)
    # August 2004 (8)
    # July 2004 (12)
    # June 2004 (11)
    # May 2004 (18)
    # April 2004 (4)
    # March 2004 (21)
    # February 2004 (5)

    Sample article:
    If 9/11 Report Wins Award, Will 90 Authors Rise?
    New York Times, The (NY) - Sunday, October 24, 2004
    Author: THOMAS CRAMPTON
    Abstract: The 9/11 Commission Report is chosen as non-fiction finalist in National Book Award competition; book has won critical praise for writing style and has sold more than one million copies; commission vice chairman Lee H Hamilton says commission members adopted sparse narrative style by cutting adjectives in effort to end sparring between Democrats and Republicans over partisan choices; Philip D Zelikow is closest thing to principal author of work, but he prefers to be called 'author surrogate'; photo (M)
    If the authors of "The 9/11 Commission Report" end up winning a National Book Award on Nov. 17, their acceptance speech should include a thank you to partisan politics.

  • ihatewhinyidiots

    where' the update? I just found 3510 Results on the IHT website search!!!

  • djl

    Is this post a joke? Does Crampton have any idea how data and computers work? "Can I drop by and get a digital copy"

    Huh?

  • this is terrible Thomas. I feel your pain. What on earth were they thinking? Perhaps they where not thinking at all..

  • Sam

    I'm sorry, you overreacted to a temporary blip.

  • teradome

    Agreed. Why not wait until the migration is over, and see if those articles are truly missing?

    Yes, it may suck that they're not available now. Obviously if the migration was easier they would have avoided dead-ending the links. The entire web startup I worked on in 1999 *can't* exist anymore. My work was TRULY virtual and spread across multiple CDNs and specific server platforms you can't run anymore. It will never be seen again. People always over-estimate the work it takes to get managed content online because its so damn easy to access, thanks to Google -- but back-end work is hard.

    It's frustrating to not see your work immediately online right now, but seriously, give it some time and stop overreacting.

  • Duff Batchelder

    Good luck... at a very minimum, would a great shame to lose that history.

  • bigyaz

    So...did you contact anyone at the NYT in a position to do anything about this about this for an explanation, as one would expect a journalist to do? Or did you just write this obnoxious letter to the publisher and post it here?

    I searched their site and found a number of your IHT stories. Care to update your post???

  • E

    Wow, looks like someone put on his cranky pants!

  • Davidget
  • It seems that they've fixed the issue - I am able to reach all of your articles through some smart redirects that they've put in place.

    http://www.iht.com/cgi-bin/sea...
    http://query.nytimes.com/searc...

  • Not the first time this has happened. McClatchy (and I'm sure other companies) didn't give much thought to deep linking when moving from one CMS to another - subsequently those old links were all wiped out for most of their papers.

    Not only is this boneheaded from a customer service point of view, but from an economic one as well.

    While I was there I was at least able to prevent some of this pain by crafting some scripts to redirect to the 'legacy' servers, but I expect those are long gone now.

  • dave9

    This is why ink marks on paper which is then stored in multiple locations is the gold standard for data retention. It's expensive and bulky, but it prevents this sort of electronic "Library of Alexandria" syndrome. If newspapers want to retain their status as the 'record of history' they will need to come up with a solution that provides digital copies in multiple locations that cannot be deleted.

  • this is just sad for the whole media industry!!! what else can you say

  • oh man, this is really poor!!! thought in 2009 old media at least understands new media a little - seems i have been wrong,

  • Unbelievable...

  • jebuff

    If this goes uncorrected it's unforgivable.

  • joe smith


    This is one of the reasons newspapers are going out of business, they're poorly managed.

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