Quickest & Easiest way to send someone a URL of a page you are browsing
March 12, 2017 1:05 PM   Subscribe

Used to be, I'd copy 'n' paste into the MSN window for the contact and voila, all done...

What now though? 'Shove it' for chrome is not really the answer; emailing the page is inelegant at best, difficult on PC's for various email type reasons; Skype just isn't happening for me and mine; so what do others do?

Having a sync between browsers and mobile is kind of a solution - but means you have to stop, pick up, etc etc and is not exactly quick and easy - so am I missing something?

Any suggestions or solutions?
posted by DrtyBlvd to Computers & Internet (17 answers total)
I would copy the URL from the browser's address bar, Chrome, Firefox, IE (I don't know what an MSN window is) and then copy'n'paste that via email, message, whatever.

What am I missing here in your question?
posted by humboldt32 at 1:12 PM on March 12, 2017 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: LOL - MSN was the MS Messenger app from a while back - like skype / AOL contacts list.

Can't C&P and email - so what other choice is there?
posted by DrtyBlvd at 1:18 PM on March 12, 2017

SMS, slack, gchat, IRC... what works best depends on your context. Who are you sending them too? Where are they, and what platforms do they like to use? Pretty sure you can drop urls into skype and that user will get it, but that doesn't help if they don't have Skype. I have seen silly but effective things like paste URL into bit.ly then tell the shortened URL to the person a few desks down by voice.

This is kinda like the proverb of the early survey of telephone ownership rates. Shockingly, ownership was at 100%- everyone who answered the call had a phone!

Disregarding 'elegance' the reason I drop urls into email is because literally anyone I want to share a URL with has email (and is willing and able to use it), but that's not true for any of the other platforms I listed above.
posted by SaltySalticid at 1:24 PM on March 12, 2017

My "new" MSN messenger is Facebook Messenger or Twitter PMs, depending on who I'm talking to. How do you chat to those people? Or are these your family in the same room with you?

If this is the only "sharing written communication" thing you need, you could have a collaborative Google doc (or equivalent cloud doc) open in a separate tab.
posted by ClarissaWAM at 1:31 PM on March 12, 2017

Response by poster: Email is not a contender for numerous reasons; Slack is to big, Skype not shared by all, IRC not a simple enough solution to most; GChat seems a contender I wasn't aware of - off to investigate that a bit further...
posted by DrtyBlvd at 1:32 PM on March 12, 2017

Response by poster: Facebook is what I was missing when I was thinking for the original post - therein lies the answer as to where everyone is nowadays, doesn't it! Not us / I, for various reasons, I'm afraid. I forgot about that.

Twitter is a no-no as it isn't permitted on some desktops...
posted by DrtyBlvd at 1:35 PM on March 12, 2017

Something like social bookmarking?
posted by lmfsilva at 1:42 PM on March 12, 2017 [1 favorite]

I don't understand why you can't send URLs by email, and understanding that might help me think of a solution. Failing that, can you send URLs by text?
posted by Too-Ticky at 1:43 PM on March 12, 2017 [3 favorites]

I also don't understand. Your issues seem to be independent of working with a URL. Even your responses are leaning heavily on some assumptions. Can explain your question better?
posted by humboldt32 at 2:00 PM on March 12, 2017 [8 favorites]

I guess the question is: how are you communicating with these folks for everything that is not sharing URLs? Then maybe we can help figure out how to do it on that platform.
posted by rainbowbrite at 2:01 PM on March 12, 2017 [8 favorites]

Best answer: The answer to this is quite "simple":
  1. Find a communications platform that supports hyperlinking and is common to all of the people you want to communicate with. Failing that, find the smallest set of communications platforms that accomplish this goal.
  2. Use that platform to send the link.
The problem you appear to have is that #1 is not a simple matter because there really isn't anything remotely like a single platform these days. My communication is spread across Telegram, Skype, Discord, Hangouts, Twitter and Tumblr, and while I have the highest concentration of people I know on Telegram at the moment, not everyone's there. And there's a dizzying array of options out there: Facebook messenger, SnapChat, WhatsApp, Slack, IRC, and others in addition to the ones I already mentioned. If this is for a workgroup, you can standardize on something by fiat, but if it's friends and family, the best you can do is find something you like/tolerate and encourage people to use it.

Sorry if this isn't a helpful answer, but there really isn't a magic bullet solution to your problem, especially if email isn't an option, as that's really the only thing I'd consider that comes close to a universally used communications platform on the internet. If you have some specific requirements (Does it need to be accessible over the web without installing software? Do you want desktop/mobile apps? Does it need to support push notifications? etc.) then that might lead to some narrower and perhaps more helpful answers.
posted by Aleyn at 2:35 PM on March 12, 2017 [4 favorites]

Would it work to create a Google Doc that anyone can edit, and then use a URL shortener to create an easily memorable URL, e.g. tinyurl.com/companyname? Then you could copy and paste into the doc, and give the short URL to people orally so that they can bookmark the Google Doc.
posted by brianogilvie at 3:18 PM on March 12, 2017

Or follow the advice above and use a social bookmarking site like delicious.com.
posted by brianogilvie at 3:19 PM on March 12, 2017

Could you elaborate on some of the "numerous reasons" why email isn't an option for you?
posted by a box and a stick and a string and a bear at 3:25 PM on March 12, 2017 [1 favorite]

What about slack is "too big"? You can use slack via browser if mobile and desktop versions are for some reason a no-go. I agree that it's hard to solve this problem if we don't know what the problem is.
posted by rtha at 5:10 PM on March 12, 2017

my wife and i use couple.me which is basically a private IM application for just two people (it'll do lists and a few other things too). the website is a thin version of the android/ios app that is the primary interface.

in android we can just share directly to couple and it sends the link from chrome. it's literally "tap the menu button and then tap the share button, select couple and it's done" (if couple was the last thing i used to share it's even one less tap from chrome)

it's also really good for sharing photos directly from your phone with your partner. we have couple open on our browsers during the day at work to chat and send links back and forth.
posted by noloveforned at 7:54 PM on March 12, 2017

Slack is literally as small as you'd like it to be. Create a Slack space and only invite one person to it.

We need more information about what you're currently using and why it's not working.
posted by emelenjr at 9:06 PM on March 12, 2017 [2 favorites]

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