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As of this feature request being completed, links pasted into the Insert Hyperlink dialog that appears when you click the Hyperlink button in the editor automatically go through some kind of URL-encoding, replacing non-ascii and certain other characters with percent-encoded versions. For example, if you pasteöbius_strip

into the hyperlink box and click OK, the link that gets inserted into the editor is actually a link to

This percent-encoding of characters works fine, and, as far as I know, does not break anything. However...


The Insert Hyperlink box also - destructively and, as far as I can tell, pointlessly - un-encodes certain characters in URLs, notably including the ampersand and equals signs, which many sites require to be percent-encoded when appearing as part of the data in a query string. That is, occurrences of %26 or %3D in URLs pasted into the Insert Hyperlink box are replaced with & and = respectively.

Examples of this breaking, or else undesirably modifying, links:

1) This valid Google search URL:

gets converted to this rather differently-behaving one if you paste it into the Insert Hyperlink box:

2) This valid URL from

gets converted to this broken one:

Proposed Solution

Never un-encode any percent-encoded characters in a URL pasted into the Hyperlink box, ever.

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

I fixed this a while ago, see Different HTML from inline and numbered Markdown links breaks links on Meta.SO.

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