Bit.ly, the URL shortening service, has found that the average shared link enjoys a mortality more precarious than that of a fruit fly. Most links last no longer than three hours Bit.ly found. News links last about five minutes. The company found that the quick gasp of life is hardly lengthened across genres. Comedy and news are equally likely to come to life and then rapidly disappear on the Internet.
The link company took a hint from atomic physicists when measuring the life of a link. The study measured a link’s half life, and determined the point at which a link has received half the total clicks it will receive online.
Hilary Mason, a Bit.ly researcher, found that Youtube links are among those with the longest half lives. The life of a Youtube link, she found, can stretch as long as 7.4 hours. “As clickers, we remain interested in links on Youtube for a much longer period of time,” Mason wrote in the study.
Read more at The New York Times.