The BBC and their enormous website

Part of the BBC’s review of what they’re doing now and how they want to keep doing it in the future involves looking at their presence on the web.

I found an interesting post on the Internet Blog regarding the use of direct URLs on the BBC, and how freaking many of them there are! The plan is to reduce the list and in doing so, it will help them to reimagine the way the site works. I think.

Here’s a few from the bottom of the list (you can see the whole thing at the end of the above linked post, or in this handy text file). The review doesn’t count redirecting URLs that are there to make things easier for visitors and for reading out in various shows.

Zombies!

The paragraph I find most curious in the Beeb’s post is this:

Then there is the question of what to do with sites to which we no longer wish to commit resources. For some time now we have been mothballing older sites like bbc.co.uk/testthenation so that users understand that we are not keeping them up to date. That is fine for now, but the user experience on these sites will inevitably degrade over time, especially as we upgrade the infrastructure which powers BBC Online – due over the course of the next year. So for sites that we don’t want to modernise or simply delete, there is a question about the best way to archive them for future generations and we are looking at the options now. If anyone has a solution to this, we’d be pleased to hear from them.

What is the best way?