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Friday, September 30, 2016

Parliamentary Committee Meeting permalinks

On the Parliament of Canada website parl.gc.ca links to committee meetings are usually given using document IDs.  The problem is that if the meeting is amended (which happens often), they are creating a new document ID, and the previous document ID doesn't redirect to the new one.  Which means a link to a meeting that worked one day may break the next day, with no explanation.  (This is an incorrect implementation; I don't know whether it is a CMS issue, or a lack of web understanding, or what.)

So here's how a link is typically provided

http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?Language=e&Mode=1&Parl=42&Ses=1&DocId=8451116

HOW TO make a permanent link

But it appears there is actually a permanent linking system in the background, it's just not used.  It's of format

http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?Pub=CommitteeMeetingNotice&Acronym=[4 letter committee acronym]&Mee=[meeting number]&Language=e&Mode=1&Parl=[Parliament number]&Ses=[Parliamentary session number]

e.g. for the above document ID 8451116 URL, the equivalent would be

http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?Pub=CommitteeMeetingNotice&Acronym=ERRE&Mee=34&Language=e&Mode=1&Parl=42&Ses=1

That is to say, meeting number 34 of the ERRE Special Committee on Electoral Reform, during the 42nd Parliament, session 1.
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