A linkback is a mechanism by which a research provider delivers content that is stored on its portal to end users through URL links provided via research distribution aggregation vendors. When accessed, the link directs the user to a report stored in the provider’s database. The aggregation vendor stores a link to the research content, rather than storing a copy of the content itself.
As this is an emerging area, each implementation is somewhat different. However, the members of the RIXML Linkback Working Group worked together to identify the key discussion points and decisions involved with a linkback initiative.
The Technical Implementation Guide
Based on input from member firms, the RIXML Linkback Working Group has created the RIXML Investment Research Linkback Technical Implementation Guide. The purpose of this document is to summarize the requirements, steps, and best practices for an investment research linkback implementation. It covers:
- a number of best practices surrounding implementing a linkback deployment.
- guidance regarding authentication.
- an overview of the steps involved in implementing a linkback deployment.
Research providers interested in setting up linkback solutions should consult with their research distribution vendors, as each implementation may be slightly different. Additionally, entitlements and readership reporting embargoes are not covered in this document; however, implementing a linkback framework will require the research provider and the aggregation vendor to integrate their existing entitlement strategy and embargo agreements into the linkback solution.
The RIXML Investment Research Linkback Technical Implementation Guide v1.0 was published on January 11, 2022, incorporating the feedback received during the comment period.
We see version 1 of the RIXML Investment Research Linkback Technical Implementation Guide as the first step. We are encouraging member firms and others to share their insights, feedback, and observations as they implement a linkback strategy. Once more firms have moved from the planning phase to the implementation phase, we expect to benefit from real-world experiences to develop the next version of this guide.
We will also be convening a group to discuss research reporting embargoes. This is a topic that is closely related to linkbacks, but is also related to other delivery methods. Because the individuals responsible for embargoes at each member firm are often not the same as for linkbacks, we will be convening a separate group.
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