Info Drain: Over A Third Of Web Pages Went Down In A Decade

The disappearance of newspapers has been well documented. But that is not the only information source facing erosion, judging by “When Online Content Disappears,” an analysis by Pew Research Center.  

Of all the web pages that existed in 2013, 38% are no longer available today, compared with 8% of pages that existed in 2023, according to Pew's analysis. And 25% of webpages that existed at some point in that decade are also defunct.  

The study notes that “even as users across the world rely on the web to access books, images, news articles and other resources, this content sometimes disappears from view.” 

At the same time, many existing websites have broken links. 

For instance, 23% of news web pages and 21% from government sites contain at least one broken link. News sites with high levels of traffic and sites with less are equally likely to contain broken links.



Tweets are also disappearing at a rapid rate. 

Almost 20% of tweets are no longer visible on the site months after being posted. And 60% of the accounts that posted them are suspended, made private or deleted. 

In addition, more than 40% of tweets written in Turkish or Arabic are no longer visible within three months of being posted. 

Pew studied a random sample of just under one million webpages from the archives of Common Crawl, an internet archive service. It sampled approximately 90,000 pages per year from 2013 through 2023. 



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