Archiving the Gore Center’s Website through the Wayback Machine

Written by Sarah Calise, Archivist

Hopefully, you’ve heard the latest news–we have an updated website: mtsu.edu/gorecenter. MTSU’s department websites were recently switched over to a content management system with unified style and formatting, so now we all truly belong to one True Blue team! For any of you who might catch some nostalgia for the old website, have no fear because the Wayback Machine is here!

17-waybackmachine

What’s the Wayback Machine? In short, it is a digital archive of the World Wide Web created by the Internet Archive. Launched in 2001, the Wayback Machine allows users to archive snapshots of websites across time. It also revisits sites on occasion and will archive a newer version.

According to the database, website pages from the Gore Center’s old URL “gorecenter.mtsu.edu” were saved 55 times from 2005-2018. Here’s what our website looked like on October 29, 2005:

gore-website-2005.jpg

This website looks fairly dated according to today’s standards and technology, doesn’t it? You can visit our 2005 archived website here: https://tinyurl.com/yap2fexy. You will notice you can click around and still visit many of the linked pages. This site has minimal graphics and color compared to the second version of our website that launched in early 2012 and closed in 2018. Here’s what it looked like on February 5, 2012:

gore-website-2012

Much of the content of the 2012 site was similar to 2005, but we certainly changed up the style and utilized more accessible fonts. You can explore this archived website here: https://tinyurl.com/y7v37h2x.

You may be asking, “that’s cool, but what’s the point of the Wayback Machine?” For one, it’s just fun. It is truly amazing how much technology and website styles have changed since the Internet became more commonplace. At the Gore Center, we could use it for our own institutional records to see how we described or promoted things online in the past. Some scholars use it for research; I used it during graduate school when I was researching Star Wars fanzines and fan fiction from the 1990s and early 2000s. Journalists or lawyers might use the Wayback Machine for accountability, evidence, or older news stories.

We hope our new website offers a more user-friendly experience. If not, let us know!

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