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A group of websites (or web pages), generally owned and maintained by different people, linked together in various ways (but typically as a ring!), and usually having a common theme, a common "click here to get to the next / previous / random / list page in the ring" control device and logo and so on. Webrings can be manually maintained, but there are numerous webring support sites and programs on the Net. One of the first was webring.org:


Intro text from their site:

... one of the fastest and most exciting ways to navigate the World Wide Web! This completely free service offers easy access to hundreds of thousands of member websites organized by related interests into easy-to-travel Rings.

Webrings were an early means of promoting and indexing sites, prior to the rise of search engines as the defacto portal. They presently do not hold the importance they once did. Now, webring.org has been bought by Yahoo, making the WebRing mechanism less independent than it once was.

The main failing of webrings is that, inevitably, some sites on the ring will either prove ephemeral or will not display the forward link prominently. In the absence of effective forward navigation, webrings degenerate into mere lists of links.


There is another sense of a WebRing that involves dense linking between related sites. Sometimes this just kind of happens because the site operators have similar interests and other times this is explicitly constructed. Of course, this is really a graph and not a ring, but who outside of compsci understands that "graph" doesn't mean a bar chart?

I suggest to call such a generalized "Webring" a WebWeb and to discuss the potential there. -- FridemarPache

The TourBus system is in some sense a WebRing around Wikis. Unlike most webrings, the TourBus mechanism includes automated ring checking and a certain amount of motivated human supervision to ensure that navigation remains possible.

TrailFire in wiki-mode allows to create a WebRing on the fly. -- [fridemar]


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