More often than not links in articles work and provide valuable information. But I really hate it when I come across an accepted SE answer, and it mostly consists in a link to the poster’s defunct blog. Even if the link works, I feel uneasy that the poster didn’t bother copying and formatting information.

For instance, on this question I think the accepted answer is not very good, but it gives direct advice. And this answer doesn’t really answer the question, but it provides much more interesting information; the problem is that you have to click the links to see it.

Should we encourage that second poster to copy information from his blog back on SE, or is only the link OK? What happens when his blog dies?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Copying the contents of the link is not the right answer. Legally speaking, the contents of a blog or whatever (unless it's public domain) is under copyright of the author. Copying it into a post here, especially considering all the content on SE sites is creative commons, is a bad idea. \$\endgroup\$ – Tetrad Dec 8 '11 at 23:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ Now if it's your own blog (as is the case of your specific example) then that's a decision to be made on a case by case basis, but by the author himself. \$\endgroup\$ – Tetrad Dec 8 '11 at 23:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ I've stumbled upon this discussion which happens to link to one of my posts. It's a fair point, and to safeguard against the blog going down someday I'll elaborate a bit more on my answer. \$\endgroup\$ – David Gouveia Dec 9 '11 at 3:22
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Tetrad the recommended course of action is to quote the relevant parts of the link, as specified in gamedev.stackexchange.com/questions/how-to-answer under "Provide context for links" \$\endgroup\$ – Jeff Atwood Dec 14 '11 at 12:01

I usually downvote answers that are basically just a link and I add a comment so that the poster can improve his answer.

I think it's important that the poster mentions (at least) the relevant keywords in an answer, so that one can search the web for said keywords if the link goes down. It might be overkill to copy information from the linked article, but an outline of the described procedure would be nice...

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