Nambu Re-opens tr.im, Dives Back into URL Shortening Game

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Nambu Network may have taken its ball and gone home when it announced that the tr.im URL was shutting down, but now it looks like the URL shortening service has a new lease on life, at least for now. tr.im is back in the game, and URLs that were temporarily broken should be working again.

The sudden tr.im shutdown on Sunday left users and developers looking for alternate URL shortening services to use, and apparently the move drew a large public response, too.

"We have restored tr.im, and re-opened its website. We have been absolutely overwhelmed by the popular response, and the countless public and private appeals I have received to keep tr.im alive," Nambu Network said on its company blog. "We have answered those pleas. Nambu will keep tr.im operating going forward, indefinitely, while we continue to consider our options in regards to tr.im’s future."

On Sunday, however, the company was giving users a different message when it said "There is no way for us to monetize URL shortening -- users won't pay for it -- and we just can't justify further development since Twitter has all but annointed bit.ly the market winner. There is simply no point for us to continue operating tr.im, and pay for its upkeep."

URL shortening services first became popular as an easy way to compress long and complex Web addresses into short, easy to copy, links. The 140 character limit Twitter imposes on posts, however, made the shortening services even more popular since they helped conserve space in tweets.

Nambu Network blamed Twitter and the competing URL shortening service bit.ly for tr.im's untimely demise.

The company claims the temporary shut down wasn't a publicity stunt, but the move certainly gained the attention of developers, users and the media. That attention, however, may not work out well for Nambu Network in the long run. Many users have already transitioned their shortened URLS to competing services, and won't go back to tr.im for fear of getting cut off again.

While the company has promised to keep tr.im running "indefinitely," it is also working to determine what to do with the service in the long term. If the right buyer comes along, Nambu Network is willing to sell. If not, there's no reason why the company couldn't decide to shut down tr.im again.

Comments

Allison Davis

If it was a publicity stunt, I don’t think it worked.  Now that users know that the service could go down at any time it doesn’t inspire much confidence.  Especially when services such as Bit.ly seem more stable.

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