As Wikipedia describes it, link rot is “the phenomenon of hyperlinks tending over time to cease to point to their originally targeted file, web page, or server due to that resource being relocated or becoming permanently unavailable.”
When you have a blog that have over decade old posts, it’s almost guaranteed that most links there are totally broken. Although most if not all modern CMS’s provide “permalinks”, in my opinion these provide no guarantee on that links permanance any more than non-canonical URLs before. In reality, permalinks are usually just more visually pleasing URLs.
Tim Berners-Lee wrote on the subject1 already in 1998. However, few took note which just goes to show that two decades later we are still in the stone age of hyperlinked content. I guess this is because most people still consider their whole websites as physical stuctures, where the visitors come through a front door (like http://example.org) and the owners are free to reorganize anything inside as they see fit without any signs of the previous configuration. Obviously the importance of web search results means that most web site operators do not want to “old” URLs to return an error like a 404 Not Found but are tempted to just guide the visitor back to the front door instead. This is not good for anyone who cares about preserving the digital history on the internet.
Running my own blog through a dead link checker at the time of writing shows that my blog has 775 links of which 27 fail. However, it is very likely that many out of the “non-broken” links do not lead to where they originally were meant to, and are, in fact, broken. They might very well redirect2 to the root of the site instead of the now lost page.
I have started to replace broken links on my blog with links to the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine’s archived versions at the approximate time of publishing of my post referencing them.
Please do let me know if you encounter a broken or misleading link on my blog.