Long URL’s that go on and on like a comet’s trail are an annoyance, and also difficult to use in blogs and chat programs. That’s why short URLs have their uses. Bitly is one of the better known ones.
There are quite a few others in the crowd out there. Then there are some temporary short URL services which allow you to set an expiry date with the short URL. The advantage is that whatever you are sharing via the short URL comes with a time limit.
Temporary short URLs are something you should consider if you do a lot of forum postings and do not want your share to be always available. There are other uses like sharing offers and time sensitive data. So, let’s check out three cool short URL services which expire when you want them to.
There’s nothing stopping you from using URL Gone as a normal link shortener. But you can use the small field that’s provided here to set an expiry date (in terms of days) for the temporary URL. The link will not work once it has expired and it also will be removed from the application’s server. If you leave the field blank, the link will stay available permanently.
ShoutKey is a unique service in more ways than one. Firstly, it uses a randomly chosen English word as the key for the shortened URL. Secondly, it allows you to set an expiry date for your URLs with the soonest being 5 minutes. Though, I am pretty sure you will go for the one that makes the URL available for at least a day. Also, ShoutKey gives you bookmarklets for creating and previewing the shortened links in your browser.
As ShoutKey explains, the advantage of using normal English words is that you can say the word aloud or type it across to a person who knows you are using the service.
Too Tiny URL
Too Tiny URL is a very simple web application with an interface that’s marred by just a single ad. Too Tiny URL gives you an additional password protection feature over and above the expiry date. One nice feature is that along with the date, you can set the precise time the link will expire. You can also set the number of times the URL can be clicked through. The Additional Options also enable you to create a custom URL that might be more readable by the recipient. Just check the ‘Agree to the terms’ box before you click on Go to create the shortened URL.
These three services are pretty much the template for the various types of link shorteners (with the expiry features) that you will bump into on the web.
Do you see an additional way to protect your shortened URLs now?