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In this question, several workarounds are shown for inserting links containing parentheses (()). However, they don't work for comments, because you cannot insert the extra line break needed for the

[SomeLinkText][1]
[1]:http://example.com

syntax to work. It just seems like an arbitrary limitation; I know that this prevents one from using Regex to match the URL expressions, but we know what happens when one uses regex. :)

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2 Answers 2

up vote 6 down vote accepted

The #2 work-around on that page (urlencoding the parens) works in comments. Firefox will do it for you if you copy the URL directly from the address bar.

Note that certain sites actually work better if you just strip the parenthetical portions out before posting anyway...

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1  
For example to link to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samba_(software) simply use "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samba_%28software%29"... note that this is not ASCII encoding but URL encoding –  Peter Ajtai Sep 3 '10 at 23:43
    
Okay -- since MSDN links are so common, maybe they should be detected and the parens should be simply stripped? No idea here. –  Billy ONeal Sep 7 '10 at 19:25

I'm assuming your regex hint is supposed to suggest that correctly nested parentheses could be handled. It's certainly true that parens are legal characters in URLs. But no specification says that parentheses in URLs have to be correctly opened and closed. So this:

http://example.com/somewhere)XYZ/42

is a perfectly valid URL. But are you seriously suggesting that this comment:

For more information, see [this page](http://example.com/somewhere)XYZ/42).

should work?

Edit: Okay, the usual case (see here for examples) will be supported in comments after the next build.

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It's impossible with the current system to get them all to work, but nevertheless I think it would be beneficial to support URLs with matching parens, which are the vast majority of them. –  Andreas Bonini Sep 4 '10 at 19:08

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