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RFC 2616, "Hypertext Transfer Protocol -- HTTP/1.1", June 1999

Note: This RFC has been obsoleted by RFC 7230 RFC 7231 RFC 7232 RFC 7233 RFC 7234 RFC 7235

Source of RFC: http (app)

Errata ID: 2301
Status: Rejected
Type: Technical

Reported By: Conrad Roche
Date Reported: 2010-06-14
Rejected by: Alexey Melnikov
Date Rejected: 2010-07-07

Section 14.36 says:

   The Referer[sic] request-header field allows the client to specify,
   for the server's benefit, the address (URI) of the resource from
   which the Request-URI was obtained (the "referrer", although the
   header field is misspelled.) The Referer request-header allows a
   server to generate lists of back-links to resources for interest,
   logging, optimized caching, etc. It also allows obsolete or mistyped
   links to be traced for maintenance. The Referer field MUST NOT be
   sent if the Request-URI was obtained from a source that does not have
   its own URI, such as input from the user keyboard.

It should say:

   The Referer[sic] request-header field allows the client to specify,
   for the server's benefit, the address (URI) of the resource from

   whose message-body the Request-URI was obtained (the "referrer", although the
   header field is misspelled.) The Referer request-header allows a
   server to generate lists of back-links to resources for interest,
   logging, optimized caching, etc. It also allows obsolete or mistyped
   links to be traced for maintenance. The Referer field MUST NOT be
   sent if the Request-URI was obtained from a source that does not have
   its own URI, such as input from the user keyboard.

Notes:

The text should mention that the referrer is specified when the URI was obtained from the message-body of the Request-URI.

For instance, when the user agent receives a 302 response for a Request-URI, it does not specify the original Request-URI in the referrer header for the subsequent request - even though the (redirect) URI "was obtained" from the (header of the) 302 response for the original Request-URI.

Roy T. Fielding replied:
I think this should be rejected. The referrer is the redirect.
User agents should be sending the redirecting URI in Referer,
or sending nothing in Referer.

In any case, see the Link header field. It is certainly possible
to be referred by something in the header fields, so saying that it
is in the message-body would be incorrect.
--VERIFIER NOTES--
As per the reply from Roy T. Fielding.

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