Template:Dead link

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[dead link]

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This template is used to mark "Wikipedia logo"dead links, either within a paragraph or within a "Wikipedia logo"reference citation. Marking dead links signals to editors and to "Wikipedia logo"WP:Link rot bots that this link needs to be replaced with an archive link.

Before considering whether to use the {{dead link}} template it is often useful to make a search for an "Wikipedia logo"archive copy of the dead link and thereby avoid using the tag altogether. All {{"Wikipedia logo"cite xxx}} templates have the facility for adding |archive-date = and |archive-url = parameters for linking to an archive copy. Non- {{"Wikipedia logo"cite xxx}} citations can use {{webarchive}}.

Using {{Dead link}} will place a note by the URL and add the article to one of the Category:Articles with dead external links categories.

Append this template directly after the link (after the link code's terminating ] if you are using "Wikipedia logo"wikitext), or, if you are using a {{"Wikipedia logo"cite xxx}} template, directly after the {{"Wikipedia logo"cite xxx}} transclusion (not inside it), but inside the reference, if any, i.e. before the </ref>, in all cases leaving the original link intact:

<ref>{{cite web|url=http://www.example.org|title=The Example Website|access-date=22 September 2012}}{{Dead link|date=May 2024}}</ref>

Not doing so might hinder detection by automated tools. If the citation contains multiple URLs (e.g. chapterurl and url) in a template, and only one is broken, you can use <!-- hidden text --> to explain which one is broken.

If the article uses "Wikipedia logo"clickable footnotes, then this template should be placed just before the </ref> that contains the dead link. The notice will then correctly appear in the reference section instead of in the body of the text, and so "Wikipedia logo"WP:Link rot bots can properly find and fix the link.

If you are placing this template inside a <ref> </ref> reference, do not leave any "Wikipedia logo"substitution template such as {{subst:CURRENTMONTHNAME}} or {{subst:CURRENTYEAR}}, because substitutions fail inside ref tags.

Avoid using this template when the reference is fully adequate without the link. In this case, simply remove the link. For example, if a {{cite journal}} template is used with a "Wikipedia logo"DOI, remove the |url = parameter.

Common form (with current date)

{{Dead link|date=May 2024}}

Optional parameters

Provides a history of the linked page via the "Wikipedia logo"Wayback Machine. Set only if history actually exists, as otherwise it is misleading to users and editors.
The date parameter consists of the full English name of the current month with initial capital, a space, and the year, not full dates; e.g., "January 2013", but not "jan13". Any deviation from these two rules will result in an "invalid date parameter" error.
"Wikipedia logo"Bot accounts specify the |bot= parameter as a sign that the tag was added by an automated process. Set as bot=<bot name>.
Set this to "yes" if you have tried unsuccessfully to find an archived copy, or a copy with a different URL. This will put the page in Category:Articles with permanently dead external links, and the annotation will be rendered as "[dead link]" instead of just "[dead link]". Note that this currently will occur for any value supplied, including "no", so if a fix was not attempted, simply leave this parameter off, or set it to be blank. Also note that if a page cannot be found in the "Wikipedia logo"Internet Archive (Wayback Machine), "Wikipedia logo"often a live copy can be found via a web search for the full title, in quotes, on the original website, or on the Internet at large.


  • The date-substitution template may be used to automatically generate the date, e.g., {{Dead link|{{subst:DATE}}}}. See "Wikipedia logo"Help:Substitution for more information.
  • The date= parameter need not be added by the editor: if not entered, a "Wikipedia logo"bot will soon add it.


  • <ref>{{cite web |url=http://www.example.org |title=Web page title |website=Example.com |access-date=22 September 2012}} {{Dead link |date=September 2012}}</ref>
  • <ref>{{cite news |title=Sorrell accuses Murdoch of panic buying |author=Plunkett, John |url=http://media.guardian.co.uk/site/story/0,14173,1601858,00.html |newspaper=[[The Guardian]] |date=27 October 2005 |access-date=22 September 2012}} {{Dead link}}</ref>


  • Avoid using free links (e.g. http://www.example.org/{{Dead link}}), as software that is unable to handle templates may read an incorrect link. Add brackets if necessary.
  • Avoid complicated formatting. Nesting inside a template is generally not supported well.
  • Avoid using [ ] { | } < > characters between the end of the external link and {{Dead link}}, as they are often used to format text.


This is the "Wikipedia logo"TemplateData for this template used by TemplateWizard, "Wikipedia logo"VisualEditor and other tools. Click here to see a monthly parameter usage report for this template based on this TemplateData.

TemplateData for Dead link

	"description": "A template to indicate that the preceding URL is dead",
	"params": {
		"date": {
			"label": "Month and year",
			"description": "The month and year the URL was found to be dead, like \"June 2013\"",
			"type": "string",
			"autovalue": "{{subst:CURRENTMONTHNAME}} {{subst:CURRENTYEAR}}",
			"suggested": true
		"bot": {
			"label": "Bot name",
			"description": "The name of the bot used to identify the dead link (not used by regular editors)",
			"type": "wiki-user-name"
		"url": {
			"label": "Wayback URL",
			"description": "The dead URL, used only if there is a Wayback Machine archive",
			"type": "url"
		"fix-attempted": {
			"label": "Fix attempted",
			"description": "Setting to 'yes' (or any non-blank value) indicates that no archive copy is available",
			"type": "boolean",
			"example": "yes"
	"format": "inline"

See also

Dead link tools