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At the November Web Users Group meeting, we introduced a new feature we were planning for the VCU Keywords application.
The new feature we originally envisioned would enable temporary,
randomized URLs that would expire after 60 days of non-use. After our
discussion at the Web Users Group meeting, we’ve decided to change the
feature somewhat to allow these URLs to remain permanent. Here is how we envision the new URL shortening system working. Please read through and let us know what you think in the comments. (Comments will be automatically approved if you Sign In using your VCU eID and password.)

  1. When requesting a
    new keyword, the default name would be a short randomized set of
    characters beginning with an underscore, for example _wU9
    (henceforth known as a random keyword). You will also have the option
    to specify a titled keyword at the time of creation instead.
  2. Random keywords that point to a VCU.edu domain will be
    immediately approved. Random keywords that point outside of the VCU.edu
    domain will require approval first (to prevent spam abuse). All titled
    keywords will require approval (to ensure that titles are granted to
    the proper group or person).
  3. Random keywords will persist until they have been inactive for 60
    days, at which point an email will be sent to the keyword requester
    asking whether they want the keyword to become permanent. If the
    requester answers no or does not respond, the keyword will be deleted
    after 75 days of inactivity. (Inactivity means that the
    go.vcu.edu/_random_keyword URL has not been visited.)
  4. There
    will be an option in the initial request form (and in the update form)
    to request that a random keyword be permanent. (It will be unchecked by
  5. You will be able to edit the URL that random keywords
    point to. If the URL changes to a non-VCU.edu domain, the change will
    require approval. If the URL was already an approved non-VCU.edu domain
    and the location is changing within the same domain, the change will be
    automatically approved.
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