A New Type of User
We have added a new type of relationship for an individual user to create Perma Links under the umbrella of a Registrar. 
As always, every user has their own account where they can log into their dashboard. 
Each of these accounts has a “Personal Links” folder that is private to them. This folder is allocated ten “trial links” that can be made within it. Beyond that, a user either needs to have a personal subscription with or create links within a folder that is affiliated with a Registrar institution. 
Current users are already familiar with two types of affiliation with a Registrar: 
Registrar User = admin overseeing all accounts affiliated with the Registrar. They have the power to create Organizations, set policies, and grant Sponsorships. They can also see all links created within Organization folders and Sponsored Links folders (but not Personal Links folders.)
Organization User = account that is affiliated with an “Organization” created by a Registrar User. Organizations are like collaborative silos under the umbrella of a Registrar. Any account affiliated with any Organization can see all of the associated folders and Perma Links. 
Now, there’s a third: 
Sponsored User = account that has been granted “Sponsorship” to create links directly by a Registrar User. They have a special folder in their dashboard with no link limit that is only visible to themselves and the Registrar User. 
Accounts can be both Sponsored Users and Organization users at the same time. 
The use of Organizations and Organization Users work well when groups using for their work will continue regardless of the users associated with it. Good examples of this are: law journals, a professor who would like to collaborate with her RAs, or academic departments. When an individual is removed from an Organization, all of the links they created there will remain, but the individual does not have access to them. 
The granting of Sponsorships works well when the individuals using are autonomous, and will benefit from access to their Perma Links after their affiliation with your Registrar ends. When a Registrar User removes a Sponsorship from a users account, this means that user will no longer be able to create new Perma Links in their Sponsored Links folder. However, both they and the Registrar User will still have view access to the folder.
Let us know what you think! We’re at  info at, happy to hear feedback or answer questions! 
Perma Preserving Access to Online Indigenous Law Materials
APRIL 17, 2020 / 0 COMMENTS
LLMC adds more than 1,000 Perma Links to preserve access to PDF documents on the Indigenous Law Portal (ILP).
Organizations in the forever business continue to find new ways to implement the services of Most recently, our new partners at LLMC Digital created Perma Links to ensure the persistence of PDF documents on their Indigenous Law Portal (ILP). The Indigenous Law Portal was begun at the Law Library of Congress as a way to provide access to American and Canadian indigenous materials at the Law Library, and has become a project of LLMC as it grows beyond the scope of of the Law Library of Congress.
You can read their announcement here.
Both Sides of Impeachment Trial Will Be On The Right Side of History(ical Preservation)
This past weekend lawyers from both the House of Representatives and the White House filed initial documents for the ongoing Senate impeachment trial.
The team was thrilled to see that after collaboration over the past few months with both offices, their documents submitted to Senate contain Perma Links for their web citations. You can see House of Representatives’ trial memorandum here, and an archived version of it here. The President’s is available online here, and archived here.
Now, as these documents enter the historical record, we can be confident that their references to the web will remain stable and available.
As Alex Howard (@digiphile) pointed out, this is a BFD for posterity.
Of note: the U.S. House of Representatives has used @permacc in its #ImpeachmentTrial memorandum to cite URLS: like this one, where the public can read a letter from John Adams to Thomas Jefferson:​
This is a BFD for posterity.
— Alex Howard (@digiphile) January 18, 2020
[archived at​]
This development is an exciting one, and is representative of the growth in the Perma network. A search of Westlaw reveals that adoption of Perma in our courts has been picking up speed lately. 77% of the 1,000+ briefs that have been filed in state and federal courts since 2013 were filed in the last three years. Of the nearly 1,500 court opinions published using Perma in the past six years, 76% of them have appeared since 2017.
In 2019 alone there were over 350 briefs filed with links from and almost 500 opinions published with Perma Links.
We hope this trend will continue upwards. If you are interested in learning more about for your law firm or court to prevent link rot please check out our website and get in touch with us at
Link Rot Isn’t Unique to the Legal Field
APRIL 1, 2019 / 0 COMMENTS
Journalism – like scholarship – relies on citation, primary information, and credibility. sprung up as a direct answer to a problem identified in legal scholarship: originally a tool in the fight legal link rot, and it has become a staple in the lives of many law students as they write for their journals and even after they leave school.
It’s important to note, though, that the basis of our code – literally and figuratively – is not unique to the legal field. While we’re a team of librarians and coders who work in a law library, the tools we build are for everyone.
Link rot is a not a issue unique to the law world: as we started exploring our user base outside of academia, one of the first user groups that came to the forefront was journalists, for whom link rot is a problem from many angles.
For an industry that in many ways now relies on click counts and interconnected content for revenue streams and user statistics, there are hang ups when it comes to freezing web content in the way that does. Nonetheless, it is an issue that should be considered as part of the journalistic ecosystem.
As you can see in this article from The Atlantic authors do not have a singular approach to web references. This particular article, published less than a year and a half ago, contains 25 linked citations. One of them is a Perma record, which has preserved a copy of a criminal procedure law will be available to readers in the long term. It makes sense for that particular citation to be frozen in time, as it is important to capture the law at that very moment it is referenced, not what it may be in the future. 23 of the other 24 links still send readers to a live source, for now. They are largely links to other news sites and in the short term having live links works well. One link however found in the fifth paragraph – which cites a study that is a central aspect of the article’s argument – leads readers to a 404 error page.
The story is the same with this article, also less than a year and a half old, from Time that has a 404 error on a link to their own website. On the flip side, in the first paragraph, the author uses a Perma Link to reference an event held at her alma mater’s church. That decision proved to be a wise one, since that link no longer works. Other URLs send readers to sites that are currently live, but obviously are vulnerable.
For journalists, it is interesting to see what type of content is viewed as stable (other news organizations – despite frequent site restructuring like is seen at Time) versus ephemeral (calendar listings).
Are you a journalist? Where are these lines for you? What do you consider ephemeral versus stable when you’re citing the web? Does your newsroom have rules when it comes to maintaining click tracking? Do you take link rot into consideration at all as you choose your internet sources?
Canadian Guide to Legal Citation: now recommending
MARCH 25, 2019 / 0 COMMENTS
The Canadian Guide to Uniform Legal Citation, 9th ed, a.k.a. the “McGill Guide” now strongly recommends!
“In an effort to prevent link rot (broken links or pages in the future), when you cite to an item found online, you must provide a Permanent or Archived URL after the regular URL in square brackets. A permanent link (also called a Permalink or Archived link) is a URL that is intended to maintain permanence for many years despite the changes to links on a website that may occur in the future.  The McGill Guide strongly recommends the Perma.CC system to create permanent links where none is provided by the site you are citing.”
Read more here.  The McGill Guide other style guides including The Bluebook: a Uniform System of Legal Citation and the Chicago Manual of Style in recommending for the preservation of URLs in citations.
Do you have a account yet to keep your links from rotting? Sign up here!
Academic Libraries on Perma: How to Handle Departing or Graduating Users
MARCH 7, 2019 / 0 COMMENTS
A recent question from one of Perma’s librarian-registrars to us was how to handle Perma users who are graduating or departing academic institutions where it’s in use.

In short, we leave it to our academic library partners to decide whether to continue supporting Perma use after graduation. If they want to support personal use of Perma by alumni, and be responsible for customer questions and content-related policies for those folks, that’s fine with us. If they would prefer not to take on that alum support role, then they should put in place policies/practices for rolling graduates out of the orgs and we can take on those folks under our paid subscription model, if they so choose. All users retain access to their Personal Links folder regardless of academic affiliation and all public Perma Links created as part of an org remain visible via their URL.
If you do not wish alumni to remain on your library’s Perma account:
Actions to take:
Things to note:
If you want to allow graduates to continue creating Perma Links through your library:
Actions to take:
Set policies for this however you’d like: one option is to remove them from the org(s) they were a part of, then add them to a separate org for alumni / them specifically / etc.
Things to note:
Links created as part of a registrar organization are the responsibility of that registrar. Policies and best practices for collection of alumni links would still be the responsibility of the registrar library. As these users are no longer an active part of the institution, their use of Perma may extend beyond exclusively academic use. It may be worthwhile to create a separate alumni usage and support policy in light of this.
So how bad a problem is link-rot?
An academic library recently reached out to us regarding literature on the severity of link-rot. Having these in one place can be useful for anyone looking into it, though – find a collection of these below!
At a library and wondering how best to let those there know how they can use Perma to fight link-rot? Many libraries set up a simple LibGuide with a contact email for those who want to utilize at their institution, such UMass’ here (archive) or Virginia Tech’s here (archive).
Perma now offers individual user subscriptions, organizational accounts, and free accounts for those at academic institutions. Perma was made at and is supported by the Harvard Law library, part of the oldest library system in the United States, and supported by a network of libraries. Use it to make a short-link to a preserved copy of the webpage you’re citing to – a link you can trust won’t die or go away. Nearly 1,000,000 citations saved!
Updates to our Terms of Service
In conjunction with updates to that will roll out on January 22, 2019 we will be making some changes to our Terms of Service that we wanted to let our users know about. The main edits are as follows:
You can read our updated Terms of Service in full below.
Effective Date: January 22, 2019
Use of the website (the “Site”) and the content and services provided through the Site is subject to the following terms and conditions. By using the Site, you accept and agree to be legally bound by these Terms of Service, whether or not you register for an account. If you are using the Site on behalf of an organization, you are agreeing to these Terms of Service for that organization and promising that you have authority to bind that organization to these Terms of Service. In that case, “you” and “your” will refer to the organization on behalf of which you are using the Site.
If any of these Terms of Service is unacceptable to you, do not use the Site.
The Site is operated by President and Fellows of Harvard College (“Harvard”) in support of its mission to educate and disseminate knowledge and information. As used in these Terms of Service, “we,” “us” and “our” refer to the Harvard Law School Library’s initiative and to Harvard more generally. helps people create links for citations in scholarly, legal and other works. Through the Site, people can create links to and direct us to store archival copies of web pages cited in their works. Visitors to the Site can access those links and archival copies under certain conditions. The services provided by us through or in connection with the Site are referred to collectively as the “Service.”
Introducing Individual Account Subscription Tiers for Perma
For the last year or so, we’ve been working to understand the potential for Perma to help individuals and institutions outside the academic community combat link rot.
Two things have become clear through our work. First, link rot is a problem for lots of people, not just scholars. Indeed, link rot matters to anyone who cites, refers or links to web pages with the hope that they won’t change or disappear down the road. Second, Perma can help lots of people prevent link rot, whether or not they’re part of academia.
For Perma to continue to serve people outside the academic community, we have to make sure that we use our resources responsibly and focus on users with the greatest need to preserve web sources for public access.
To help us do that more effectively, we’re introducing monthly subscription tiers for people whose Perma usage is not sponsored and supported by academic libraries or other registrars:
Trial Use  – Every account gets 10 free links upon registration.
Basic Use  – For a $10 monthly fee, accounts can make up to 10 new links per month.
Intermediate Use – For a $25 monthly fee, accounts can make up to 100 new links per month.
Heavy Use – For a $100 monthly fee, accounts can make up to 500 new links per month.
As a result of these changes, accounts no longer will receive 10 free links on a recurring basis each month.  
Free, unlimited service remains available for academic users whose Perma usage is supported by their libraries and for usage by courts. Similarly, academic institutions and courts will still continue to act as registrars for free. If you want to learn more about how academic institutions and courts can arrange for free service for those they support, please contact us.  
Private organizations will continue to have the option of becoming registrars for their users at a monthly group rate. Associated users are able to create unlimited links via their sponsor organization for free, and have access to collaboration tools. Later this year, we’ll be expanding subscription options for private organizations and launching additional enhancements to help academic libraries support faculty and students using Perma.
Our explorations into Perma’s potential are ongoing, and we welcome feedback. You can contact us by emailing  info at
Perma’s November Appearances, at a glance
Here’s Perma’s November stats as of Nov 28th, per Westlaw:
Sign up here to use to ensure your own linked sources are safe. We are also now offering individual unlimited-use accounts!
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