RE: The wikimaster's dilemma

Subject: RE: The wikimaster's dilemma
From: "Combs, Richard" <richard -dot- combs -at- Polycom -dot- com>
To: 'Erik Bahama' <frequentfliar -at- gmail -dot- com>, "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Sat, 2 Jul 2011 11:45:34 -0700

Erik Bahama wrote:

> So, if a link in the UI of a web app points to a wiki page that doesn't
> exist, is it permissible for the wikimaster to make the wiki's 404 page
> redirect to the page the UI should have pointed to in the first place?

I must be misunderstanding the question/situation/problem. Isn't "the wikimaster" a person with some responsibility for the wiki in question? (Or at least, by implication, a person with editing permissions?) "Is it permissible" suggests a concern that someone's permission may be needed to change the wiki. Those two concepts seem at odds with each other.

Why not just redirect the errant link to the correct destination, rather than letting the web server send a 404?

> Or is it better to just submit a bug report and hope for the best?

Why not do both? Then both the incorrect link and the (eventually) corrected link will end up at the correct destination.

> What are the civil/criminal penalties for abusing a 404 page in this
> manner?
> Speaking hypothetically, of course.

Seriously? Or is this Friday humor?

I don't recall ever hearing of a criminal statute regarding "abuse of a 404 page." Maybe it depends on the _age_ of the 404 page...

Again, I must be misunderstanding something. If you have editing privileges for the wiki in question, then you've been granted the right to edit it. If you don't have editing privileges, the question is moot. Unless you hacked into the system, and in that case a different set of questions needs to be asked.

And again, why let the web server redirect the errant link to the 404 page in the first place?

Richard G. Combs
Senior Technical Writer
Polycom, Inc.
richardDOTcombs AT polycomDOTcom
303-223-5111
------
rgcombs AT gmailDOTcom
303-903-6372
------




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References:
The wikimaster's dilemma: From: Erik Bahama

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