Did you know?
Everything on Amazon has a permalink.
Not many people know about this, and so many questions and answers are littered with complicated Amazon URLs which are probably more fragile than the permalinks that Amazon provides.
Let's say for example I want to link you to the DVD "The Blind Side" on Amazon. I can give you the following mess of a link, copied directly from my address bar:
Or, at the bottom of the right sidebar, there is a little set of share links.
Do you see it? If you click "Share" or the envelope, you are provided with a much nicer URL:
Not only does the URL look nicer, but Amazon calls it a "Permalink", leading me to believe that this link is more permanent than the first link. Furthermore, one or more of the parameters in the first link might have data that could identify the computer of the person who copied the URL, whereas the amzn.com link seems to be universal. Presumably, the part after the slash is some internal ID number linked to that DVD, and presumably, that ID will not change.
I propose a feature request, wherein Stack Overflow (and related sites) will automatically detect Amazon links and replace them by their corresponding permalinks, in an attempt to prolong the life of these links. Furthermore, since existing questions and answers are already littered with these messy links, if this system should be put in, it should scan existing questions & answers for the messy links and convert them.
A system like this is already in place; certain links are converted into sponsor links automatically. So I think it would be equally possible to convert messy Amazon links into the short Amzn.com permalinks, to help prevent broken links.