For the last year or so, we’ve been working to understand the potential for Perma to help individuals and institutions outside the academic community combat link rot.
Two things have become clear through our work. First, link rot is a problem for lots of people, not just scholars. Indeed, link rot matters to anyone who cites, refers or links to web pages with the hope that they won’t change or disappear down the road. Second, Perma can help lots of people prevent link rot, whether or not they’re part of academia.
For Perma to continue to serve people outside the academic community, we have to make sure that we use our resources responsibly and focus on users with the greatest need to preserve web sources for public access.
To help us do that more effectively, we’re introducing monthly subscription tiers for people whose Perma usage is not sponsored and supported by academic libraries or other registrars:
Trial Use – Every account gets 10 free links upon registration.
Basic Use – For a $10 monthly fee, accounts can make up to 10 new links per month.
Intermediate Use – For a $25 monthly fee, accounts can make up to 100 new links per month.
Heavy Use – For a $100 monthly fee, accounts can make up to 500 new links per month.
As a result of these changes, accounts no longer will receive 10 free links on a recurring basis each month.
Free, unlimited service remains available for academic users whose Perma usage is supported by their libraries and for usage by courts. Similarly, academic institutions and courts will still continue to act as registrars for free. If you want to learn more about how academic institutions and courts can arrange for free service for those they support, please contact us.
Private organizations will continue to have the option of becoming registrars for their users at a monthly group rate. Associated users are able to create unlimited links via their sponsor organization for free, and have access to collaboration tools. Later this year, we’ll be expanding subscription options for private organizations and launching additional enhancements to help academic libraries support faculty and students using Perma.
Our explorations into Perma’s potential are ongoing, and we welcome feedback. You can contact us by emailing info at perma.cc.
January 7, 2019 at 9:58 pm
Hello. I’m one of your individual account users without links to courts or academia. And yes, perma.cc is a terrific tonic against link rot. I research obscure topics & having a permanent link is vital to me. Many of the sites are esoteric, run by an individual, offer a topical article which may be moved or deleted at any time. My partner is a poet, and when a site accepts a poem, she creates a perma.cc link. We live on limited funds in our retirement so $120 a year is not affordable. Thus, I’m distressed by this announcement. My questions:
1) After Jan 22, will my dozens of links be no longer available to me if I do not subscribe?
2) Will I be able to use links I have though I won’t add more? In other words, if I do not subscribe will I lose access to my perma.cc account & links?
3) Are you aware of free alternative services like perma.cc?
I may have more depending on your responses.
January 8, 2019 at 4:42 pm
Hi John, thanks for your questions. Here are the answers to these, and please reach out if you have more!
1) The upgrades that are going into effect on the 22nd will only make a difference when it comes to creating *new* links. Any records that you have made in the past have already become part of our permanent collection and will continue being preserved and accessible to you.
2) You will still be able to log into your account, share links, have them be viewable to the public etc, but if you choose not to purchase a subscription then you will not be able to create new links beyond the 10 given as a trial.
3) The web archiving world has a lot of great players. There are a handful of services out there that are free – they work a little bit differently than Perma but might be useful for your described situation. Checking out the Save Page Now feature from the Internet Archive and Rhizome’s Webrecorder.io would be great places to start.
There are nuances to all of these services, each with pros and cons. We’ll start working on a blog post to help people find the solution that best fits their situation and needs!
January 8, 2019 at 2:39 pm
For any of the new subscription tiers, are the new monthly links “use it or lose it,” or do they rollover into the next month?
January 8, 2019 at 4:50 pm
The tiers will work like use it or lose it subscriptions, so each month your link limit will reset to the amount associated with a tier. We’ve made it easy to upgrade and downgrade to different tiers if you’re not sure what your usage will be, and included prorating for changing mid-month. Thanks for your interest in Perma, please let us know if you have any other questions!
January 8, 2019 at 6:22 pm
Hi, Clare —
Is this a month-to-month subscription? If so, could someone move in-and-out of the paid service as they need to save links?
January 8, 2019 at 7:41 pm
Thanks for your question – these will be month-to-month subscriptions, but you are welcome to change tiers (or cancel a subscription) at any time. Your account will remain accessible and all previously made links will remain available and part of our collection. We’ll also prorate a mid-month upgrade if you ever find that you need more links in a particular month than you anticipated.
March 4, 2019 at 10:43 pm
Sincerely disappointed with the ridiculously restrictive pricing model, completely pushing away free users and even individuals willing to pay reasonable fees. Were those 10 free links monthly such a burden? There is very little transparency and human honesty in explanation of the changes — I can’t be possibly angry as free user, but I sure can be sad. Good luck!