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The following documentation is transcluded from Template:Broken link/doc:

Usage

This template is to leave broken external links where they are, but make it apparent that they are broken. They shouldn't just disappear if they were an important source of information. They may provide an important clue to where one might find similar information. Someone can later fix the link or find a new source.

URLs containing unencoded equal signs ("=") will break this template. To fix this, you will have to encode all equal signs using {{=}}.
The abbreviation "bl" can be used in the template instead of the full "broken link" designation.

To link to an article, for example Tony Jay's actor page, you would have a template call as such:

{{broken link|www.poetsonbroadway.com/Actor.htm}}

This would produce:

[1](X)

If text is desired, such as "Tony Jay's actor page", the following format should be used:

{{broken link|www.poetsonbroadway.com/Actor.htm|Tony Jay's actor page}}

This would produce:

Tony Jay's actor page(X)

For example, if you wish the link to be formatted as an external link, add the base website address as a third variable:

{{broken link|www.poetsonbroadway.com/Actor.htm|Tony Jay's actor page|www.poetsonbroadway.com}}

This would produce:

Tony Jay's actor page(X) at www.poetsonbroadway.com(X)

If you wish the external link to display different text, the following format should be used:

{{broken link|www.poetsonbroadway.com/Actor.htm|Tony Jay's actor page|www.poetsonbroadway.com|Poets on Broadway}}

This would produce:

Tony Jay's actor page(X) at Poets on Broadway(X)
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