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On several occasions, I was reading a question thinking "I know a guy that knows the answer to this" and that guy (or gal) also happens to be a registered user. How can I bring this to the attention of this user?

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may be related to this somehow, meta.stackexchange.com/questions/5988/… –  YOU Mar 2 '10 at 11:14
    
It is more closely related to this. meta.stackexchange.com/questions/5006 –  Zoredache Mar 2 '10 at 17:20
    
It is effectively a duplicate of Zoredache's link. –  dmckee Mar 2 '10 at 20:57
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2 Answers

up vote 10 down vote accepted

Why not keep it simple? Just email or IM or {your preferred method of communication} them the URL to the question.

It's how the rest of the web works...

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But how? The site doesn't show people's addresses, quite rightly. –  Peter Westlake Mar 2 '10 at 11:40
    
@Peter - just right click and "Send Link..." on Firefox, or what ever the equivalent is on your browser of choice. –  ChrisF Mar 2 '10 at 12:21
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@Peter: If you really need that person's help you should try searching for their website, twitter, ... and asking them. This is a lot of work but you are asking for their help so it should be. If it was easy, some people would get messages non stop. Like Jon Skeet. If they don't have a website or an online way to contact them, then they probably don't want to be contacted. –  Brian R. Bondy Mar 2 '10 at 13:30
    
@ChrisF - that's just how to send a message. It doesn't give you their address. @Brian - I quite agree, and it's right that addresses are hidden. I agree with Pekka too. My point was only that Jeff's answer doesn't actually answer the question at all. –  Peter Westlake Mar 2 '10 at 15:03
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@Peter Westlake: Yes, it does. You asked for the best way; Jeff gave you the best way. –  balpha Mar 2 '10 at 15:09
    
@Peter - I assumed that you knew their contact details... –  ChrisF Mar 2 '10 at 15:11
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@Peter: If they haven't provided contact information in their profile they don't want you to contact them. There is no PM system, and that lack is [by-design] ; this is not a social networking site. –  dmckee Mar 2 '10 at 20:59
    
@dmckee: that sounds much more like a proper answer to the question: there is no PM mechanism. No-one had actually said it till now. –  Peter Westlake Mar 3 '10 at 11:10
    
@balpha: Just to clarify, I didn't ask the question. Apologies if you realized that already. –  Peter Westlake Mar 3 '10 at 11:11
    
@Peter Westlake: You're right; s/you/the OP/g –  balpha Mar 3 '10 at 11:16
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I don't think it's good form to approach users on SO with questions just because they have shown to be knowledgeable in the past. Most people who can competently answer questions here have work to do. SO is a forum for people to pick from and answer questions whenever they are in the mood to, and have the time.

I find it okay to hint at a follow-up question in the comments of an question or answer. Anything beyond that I personally find rude.

Tag the question well so that the Guru of your choice is likely to stumble upon it if they are on SO at the moment.

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