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Where Did the Web Archive Go?

by   Mohamed Aturban, et al.
Old Dominion University

To perform a longitudinal investigation of web archives and detecting variations and changes replaying individual archived pages, or mementos, we created a sample of 16,627 mementos from 17 public web archives. Over the course of our 14-month study (November, 2017 - January, 2019), we found that four web archives changed their base URIs and did not leave a machine-readable method of locating their new base URIs, necessitating manual rediscovery. Of the 1,981 mementos in our sample from these four web archives, 537 were impacted: 517 mementos were rediscovered but with changes in their time of archiving (or Memento-Datetime), HTTP status code, or the string comprising their original URI (or URI-R), and 20 of the mementos could not be found at all.


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