Meta Stack Exchange is where users like you discuss bugs, features, and support issues that affect the software powering all 158 Stack Exchange communities.

What is meta?
Here's how it works:
  1. Any Stack Exchange user can ask a question
  2. The community provides support, votes on ideas, and reports bugs
  3. Your voice helps shape the way Stack Exchange operates

I checked my Stack Exchange Inbox (drop down list) just now and it mentioned three messages for me. Two were legit - the last was this one on The Tavern which was another Mark.

share|improve this question
Let's put it this way: If you're at a party, and someone yells "Hey Mark!", you'd turn around. That's the principle chat replies are modeled after. – balpha Oct 1 '10 at 10:00
@balpha - I'm surprised it is implemented that way but you've made a great analogy - thanks. – Wikis Oct 1 '10 at 10:36
Did somebody call me? – Mark C Oct 12 '10 at 1:22
@Marc C - you too? This question is becoming a @Mark / @Marc convention... – Wikis Oct 12 '10 at 7:51
up vote 2 down vote accepted

That follows the standard rules of @blah conflicts, I'm afraid. You would also have got a highlight inside chat for that.

That was a reply; if they had just used the explicit reply (rather than adding the @Mark), it would have known who it meant, but that @Mark was ambiguous so all the "Mark*" who had been active in the room were included.

Usually, auto-complete on the name would have given a less ambiguous match... but they are just "Mark".

You'd get the same problem if you'd both been talking in comments on SOFU. I don't propose there is much we can do about it.

share|improve this answer
You'd get the same problem if you'd both been talking in comments - I thought that only the most-recent matched commenter gets notified, or is that wrong? – Tim Stone Oct 1 '10 at 9:57
@Tim - hmmm... it seems you are correct. But I think balpha hits the nail on the head with his comment above. – Marc Gravell Oct 1 '10 at 10:21
@Marc - thanks. So I guess that, if multiple Marcs (with a C) had contributed to this page they'd all get this post in their inbox, right? – Wikis Oct 1 '10 at 10:37
@Marc: Yeah, that makes sense, especially given the more fluid nature of the chat. :) The only counterpoint I might make in this case is that the OP's lack of activity in that room (it seems he has no posts/hasn't been in chat for at least 18 days?) makes him unlikely enough of a candidate that he doesn't need a system-wide notification. At the same time though, it's impossible to know for sure, so I suppose it's a better safe than sorry sort of situation. – Tim Stone Oct 1 '10 at 10:56
@Tim - 18 days? Hmmm... I suspect that should probably indeed rule them out. Let me try to tweak that... – Marc Gravell Oct 1 '10 at 10:59
@Mark - no, time corrected me; in comments it is only the most recent; I'm changing chat to only look at people who've been in the room in the last week - seem like a fair compromise? – Marc Gravell Oct 1 '10 at 11:12
@Marc - sounds great. I don't know if one week is the appropriate time interval - I'll trust you have a better idea of that. Thanks. – Wikis Oct 1 '10 at 11:31
@marc one week seems like an absurdly large window for name mentions. Two days seems more sane to me.. – Jeff Atwood Oct 12 '10 at 9:52
@Jeff - will reduce – Marc Gravell Oct 12 '10 at 11:00
@Jeff @Marc - thanks. – Wikis Oct 12 '10 at 11:38
@Marc, if there's only 1 match, are you going to ignore the time window? Thinking about chats that have less activity. ALso, what if the 2 days eliminates all matches? – Rebecca Chernoff Oct 12 '10 at 12:35
I think it is way too sensitive. I have never really participated in the chat yet. I poke the rooms every once in a while just to see what it's all about. I haven't viewed the meta chat rooms for a while now (over a week or so) and I received a notification for a message clearly directed to Mr. @Atwood. If reducing the window is not an option, it should at least be only for people who have actually participated within this time. – Jeff Mercado Nov 5 '10 at 6:40
@JeffM - I can see exactly 1 instance of this looking at Oct/Nov: this one - but I will investigate. Fortunately, it logs everything... – Marc Gravell Nov 5 '10 at 6:48
@Marc: Ok thanks. I just thought it was odd to get notified for it when I never really participated. – Jeff Mercado Nov 5 '10 at 6:54
@JeffM - in this case, since it wasn't an exact match, there is a 2-day limit. You entered that room "2010-11-03 06:57:34.093", that reply was "2010-11-05 05:27:18.807", which is within 2 days. I see you have some matches in September too, but that pre-dates the changes. So in short, since we changed the rules, there has been only 1 false positive, and that from a room that you had visited recently... You might disagree, but to me it sounds like it is working fine...? – Marc Gravell Nov 5 '10 at 6:59

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .