About This Document
This page highlights the importance of ensuring that links to your websites from key dance- and folk-related websites work correctly and link to an appropriate and up-to-date website.
Why Check Links to Your Website?
You have a website. But maybe the address (the URL) has changed over the years. And there may be a danger that morris and folk directories are pointing to an old address.
Or maybe you used to have a website, but it was closed in the past. In which case here is a danger that morris and folk directories are pointing to a non-existent address.
Of perhaps others have made a mistake and made a typo when including a link to your side’s website.
If this happens it can have an an adverse effect on:
- Your recruitment plans
- Bookings and invitations to events
- The reputation of your side
- The visibility of your current website to search engines such as Google
It is therefore advisable to check that links to your website work, especially links from key resources. Fortunately there are tools which can help.
Key Dance-Related Sites to Check
You may wish to manually check links from key morris-related web sites. This should include:
- The Morris Federation Teamfinder service (or equivalent for members of the Morris Ring or the Open Morris). Note The Morris Federation aims to carry out annual checks on links to teams’ online resources, but there have been occasions when we have been unable to contact a web administrator when websites are found not to be working.
- The Morris Dances and Teams Database (MDDB) which is sponsored by the Morris Federation and the Morris Ring.
In addition to these services there are other lists or maps of morris sides, but services which are provided by volunteers may not necessarily be maintained. Such services include:
- James Merrylees Muddle of Maps
- The Morris Dancing Wiki
- Rapper Online (for rapper teams)
- The Directory Of Online Morris Dancers (DOOMD)
As well as such national and international directory services it would also be useful to check regional directories. For example for sides in the southwest the following resource would be useful to check:
- The Somerset and Dorset Folk Diary (SAD Folk)
In addition there may be genre-based directories which should be checked sech as:
- Rapper Online (for rapper sword teams)
Using An Automated Tool For Checking Links
Although it is useful to check the key directory services (not only to ensure the links work but also any textual descriptions are correct) it can also be helpful to discover other links to your website.
Use of this service to analyse links to Wyld Morris’s domain (at www.wyldmorris.org.uk) is shown in Figure 1.
It should also be noted that this service may be of use if you had a website hosted at a different domain – even if the website no longer exists!
Sallyport Sword Dancers, whose website is currently hosted at https://www.sallyportsword.co.uk/, at one stage hosted a website at http://www.sallyport.org/. The AHREF.com service was used to find links to this domain, as illustrated in Figure 2.
This information shows links from old websites from people who saw Sallyport Sword dancing – and these links can be useful to see the descriptions of old events and videos. However of more relevance to this document is the discovery of a (now broken) link from The NUT (a magazine for the rapper sword community). The website maintainer has been notified about the incorrect information on the NUT’s links page, but, as is the case generally with links to a website, there can be no guarantee that websites are still being maintained and incorrect links can be updated.
Status of this Document
Document created: 20 Aug 2021
Document updated: 17 Sept 2021 (CC-BY image added)
Licence for this Document
This document is available with a Creative Commons Sharealike (CC-BY) licence. In brief, this means you can copy and make changes to this document provided you give acknowledgements to the author/publisher. A suggested wording for acknowledgements is:
This document is based on the "Checking Key Links to Your Website" document by Brian Kelly, Comms and IT volunteer with the Morris Federation.
About the Author
Brian Kelly joined the Newcastle Kingsmen in 1978 and for many years was a prize-winning Betty for them. He has also danced with Sallyport Sword Dancers and Northgate Rapper as well as the now-defunct Green Ginger Morris, Phoenix Sword and Black Cap sides. He is currently a dancer with Haymarket Rapper and Wyld Morris.
Brian help set up a website for the University of Leeds in January 1993 – one of the first 100 websites in the world. During most of his professional career he was a national web adviser to UK Universities.