Is this OK or less preferred?

Sometimes the site that I developed before was not longer live or had new design.

Is it good to still keep a snapshot of the site or give the demo site with my personal website domains in my resume?

  • @JoeStrazzere some freelance websites and actual job websites
    – dgahel
    Commented May 12, 2014 at 18:48

2 Answers 2


Is it legal?

This is perhaps the most important question.

If you developed it for an employer, I believe it's actually fairly likely that they have full legal rights to it, thus you may not have a legal right to do anything at all with it.

You should probably check your contract or consult a lawyer to determine your exact legal rights.

The design versus other aspects

In website development, there may be other factors, like performance, that also plays a role. Having it be seen supporting a large user base efficiently can be a lot better than a sandbox view of it.

Proof of the accomplishment

Saying you developed this for some company (even with a link provided) isn't quite the same as pointing them to the company website which shows them running it.

Regarding redesign

If you just say you developed a website, with or without mentioning that it's been redesigned, isn't good - either you don't have anything to demonstrate, or you are passing off someone else' work off as your own.


This can go for either the company website or your website.

With your website, you have a fair amount of control over scheduled downtime.

A company website is more likely to be the target of Denial of Service attacks or hacks.

With your website, you probably don't have the top of the line hosting, so it's more likely that there's some expected or unexpected downtime, and you may even find yourself without a host in the worst case.

The extreme example is a company website that is no longer live, which obviously favours your website.

  • Hi Dukeling, thanks for the reply! But I'm still kind of confused. Are you implying it is better not to leave actual site urls? I thought it's more convincing to have some live sites in resume like mentioned here blog.codinghorror.com/a-programmers-portfolio
    – dgahel
    Commented May 12, 2014 at 21:21
  • @dgahel There isn't one answer that's always right - it depends on the circumstances and what you're trying to show off. I mentioned that it may not be legal (you'll have to investigate that, as it depends on your circumstances), and beyond that gave you some pro's and cons to ponder over in order to make an informed decision yourself. Commented May 12, 2014 at 21:36

As a developer, using an actual site is risky for the following reasons:

  • A poor user experience may make you look bad, even though the code is good
  • Developer specific work like test assertions and build scripts are not visible
  • Poor CDN configuration such as minified code without source maps may make code hard to demonstrate
  • You may need to login using real credentials which can compromise your personal information

Using a demo site is also risky for different reasons:

  • The code you demo may not make sense outside the context of the real site
  • The techniques used in the code may be outdated based on the architecture of the real site
  • The things you demo may violate some company policy, especially if the business logic depends on company specific mock data structures

Focusing on generic things like stackoverflow questions you've answered or specific things like articles you've written or algorithms you've implemented may be a better choice.


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