Doom Wiki:RFC/Romero website unreliability
Request For Comment
John Romero has an interesting and extremely unfortunate habit spanning at least a decade now of tearing down his meticulously built websites, letting the domain registrations expire so that they get squatted, and/or even setting robots.txt on his newer pages, causing the Wayback Machine to bar all the archived material from public access. This has led to a constant battle of trying to keep up-to-date the dozens of links on this wiki to the various resources he has hosted over the years. We need to take some preventative actions to stop this from being such a large issue in the future.
Domains that have been affected and their respective fates:
|planetromero.com||Unique blog posts and some content mirrored from other sites||Currently up but blanked of all existing content in late 2015|
|(www.)johnromero.com||Personal site, some unique material and some mirrors||Currently times out on access, no content available; archive.org prevents access to ALL content despite much of it being previously available (likely robots.txt set to deny all).|
|(www.)rome.ro||Prime site, had much historical material including Lee's page and a forum under /smf URLs with citable posts by Romero||Ripped down, domain reg expired. Some content is becoming inaccessible via Wayback Machine?|
|romero.smugmug.com||Historical photographs and graphics||Most content is still present but some has mysteriously disappeared as of late.|
We need to create link archiving template variations which autocategorize articles with links to the affected domains to collect them into a hidden maintenance category. Such templates should also be built to make changing the target domains en masse a simple process that does not involve hand editing every affected article.
Romero has had no problem with us hosting most of the content in question ourselves, in particular with respect to his images, so I suggest we continue to do so under fair use, until and unless someone wants to obtain a formal grant of permission from him in which case he would need to stipulate terms under which he is comfortable with us hosting the files.
Alternative stable hosts
Migrate links to alternative stable hosts that exist when possible. For example, any references to Usenet material that exist in Lee Killough's DOOM page are probably secondary sources for which first hand material exists either on Usenet itself (use Google Groups archive) or on gamers.org.
Explore the possibilities of using alternate archiving outside of the Wayback Machine, such as archive.is, which do not remove material due to robots.txt.
I have already approached Lee Killough about his site in particular and John Romero is still saying that he intends to put it back online. Therefore, Lee did not grant me formal permission to have it hosted anywhere else. This should be kept in mind, as Lee's opinion on the matter seems to be that he wants to reserve that right to Romero. If Romero fails to rehost the material in a reasonable amount of time, it may be worth asking again, but this is up in the air as Lee does not really wish to be bothered with Doom-related questions.
List of known affected articles
This list is likely incomplete at present. Please update with any further results that can be recovered via Special:LinkSearch, external search engine results, or database/API queries.
- Artwork of Doom [1 DEAD, 2 WORKING] [1 ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Aspect ratio [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- A Visit to id Software [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Barrel suicide [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Chainsaw [WORKING] URL was changed; the old version is dead.
CheatLink moved to Doom cheat codes when this became a disambiguation page, which is fine.
Cheat codeSimilarly, a link was removed when this became a redirect.
- Commander Keen [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Dante's Gate [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
Data Utility LicenseLink had its domain changed, then was replaced by a non-Romero link, which works.
- Development of Doom [WORKING]
- Don Ivan Punchatz [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Doom [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Doom cheat codes [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Doom II [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Doom II music [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING] (fixed 20160218 --Quasar (talk) 21:27, 18 February 2016 (CST))
- Doom in China [WORKING]
- Doom in popular culture [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Doom Insanity [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Doom music [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING] (fixed 20160218 --Quasar (talk) 21:27, 18 February 2016 (CST))
- Doom's protagonist [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING] A second link was removed, which is dead.
- Doom Wiki:Source material [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- E2M2: Containment Area (Doom) [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING] Link had its domain changed; the other URL is dead.
- E3M6: Mt. Erebus (Doom) [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- E4M7: And Hell Followed (Doom) [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Easter egg [2 DEAD] [2 ARCHIVES WORKING]
- Engine bug [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- File:Doom Development Chainsaw.jpg [WORKING]
- File:Foreign boxes-X3.jpg [WORKING]
- Fuzzy Pumper Palette Shop [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- John Romero [1 WORKING] [1 ARCHIVE WORKING] The planetromero.com landing page is nearly blank as noted above (removed 20160218 --Quasar (talk) 21:30, 18 February 2016 (CST)). The other link has had its domain changed; the prior URL works. One additional URL appears only in an edit summary  and is dead.
- Lee Killough [2 DEAD] [2 ARCHIVES WORKING]
- Logo [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING] Before archiving, the URL had been changed, but the former link is also dead.
- Mancubus [WORKING] The URL has been changed twice, but both prior versions are dead.
- Models [5 WORKING] All five URLs have been changed twice; the initial set is dead, but the next set still works.
- Non-Newtonian motion of corpses [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Origwad [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
Player corpses walkingSome information merged into Voodoo doll, including the link that was here.
- Quotes Dead link removed, presumably on the grounds that it was not a source for any content currently included.
Raphaël QuinetLink replaced with two non-Romero links, which are more primary versions of the same sources.
- Revenant [1 DEAD, 1 WORKING] [1 ARCHIVE WORKING] The model link has had its URL changed twice; the two old links are dead.
Robert PrinceDead link removed without explanation. (local copy was uploaded -Quasar)
- Romero's head [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Sales [WORKING] URL has been changed from a dead version.
- Sandy Petersen [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Sega 32X No Romero links in current version, but a dead link has been removed, and another dead link has been removed twice.
- Skill level [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Spiderdemon [WORKING] Originally this bit was cited to Romero's site without a specific URL. The URL has changed twice; both prior versions are dead.
- Straferunning [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING] Previously the domain was changed, but that URL is also dead.
- Super NES [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING] In addition, some yutz cited a fact to Romero's forums without specifying a URL, but fortunately it's a gameplay fact, and so could be confirmed by an expert player of this port.
- The Ultimate Doom [3 DEAD] [3 ARCHIVES WORKING]
- The Unholy Trinity [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Thy Flesh Consumed [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Tom Hall [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Tutti-frutti effect [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING] The archived URL was tweaked to point to a more relevant subpage, but if it had not been, it would still be a dead link with a live archived copy.
- Unused Doom music [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING] The domain has been changed, but that URL is also dead. (fixed 20140218 --Quasar (talk) 21:27, 18 February 2016 (CST))
- Visplane overflow [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
- Voodoo doll [DEAD] [ARCHIVE WORKING]
Feel free to discuss progress and resolutions here. --Quasar (talk) 22:19, 6 February 2016 (CST)
- Added some pages and checked all the current links (per IRC conversation I think). That includes the original URLs even for links subsequently archived. Thus there is a visible issue only when the number of dead links exceeds the number of working archive links, which applies to Doom music, Doom II music, and Unused Doom music.
- Given the pattern of behavior described above, would it make sense to add Facebook and Twitter to the domain list? Ryan W (talk) 18:40, 18 February 2016 (CST)
- The rome.ro version of "Doom Archaeology" which included the unused music tracks is a live link on archive.org, so I replaced all instances of those, changing planetromero.com back to rome.ro. I also just removed the planetromero.com link from John Romero entirely for now - we can link a new game-centric home page when and if he finally gets around to putting one up as he keeps rumoring. As far as social media, I'd prefer if the citations were updated to contain the relevant portion of the text; an example can be found on Sega Saturn. --Quasar (talk) 21:37, 18 February 2016 (CST)