I added a comment at How to Debug/Monitor SMTP Communications?

However, sequence wise, I constructed the string using these steps:

  1. Typed: []
  2. Pasted: http://www.wireshark.org/download.html
  3. Typed: ==>
  4. Pasted: http://www.wireshark.org/export.html

Problem: The Stack Overflow editor added the ] on to the url http://www.wireshark.org/export.html giving

I can understand why it happened; yet, I'd call it a bug.
Of course, the simple solution would have been for me to insert a space
(http://www.wireshark.org/export.html ]), but the re-edit time limit had expired.

(Please note: I've not checked the RFCs, so ".html]" might be valid since ] is a valid ASCII character.)


2 Answers 2


There is no "editor" that "adds" anything. You put text in a text box; when you're done, you click "Add comment"; and when comments are displayed, the text you entered is rendered according to the MarkdownMini rules.

What you're suggesting is making the rendering depend on how precisely you typed your text into the box. Besides technical feasibility issues, the only thing this would accomplish is confusion.

Q: I typed "ABC", and X happened, but user Z also typed "ABC", and Y happened there. Why is that?

A: You typed "ABC", so X happened. User Z instead typed "AC", then moved the cursor between the letters, and typed a "B". That something entirely different.

Not going to happen.

On a site note, why where you even using square brackets? For something like that, I'd expect people to use plain ol' parentheses – and that is exactly the reason why the auto-linker doesn't consider a closing parenthesis at the end of a link to be part of the link.

  • FWIW, you say that no editor exists that adds anything. yet, especially with links and e-mail addresses, many HTML editors recognize them and wrap them appropriately. sequence, imho, can be important and perhaps should. the richness of any editor is up to its implementors. some editors like Windows NotePad are mostly barren of features while others are feature rich and include grammar and spell check, et cetera. My point is: if a string is pasted in and that string is recognized as a valid link then it should not be modified. BTW, imho, there's nothing wrong with square brackets.
    – gerryLowry
    Commented Nov 3, 2011 at 16:57

I'm guessing this is related to how inline links in comments work.

So you know you could have gotten it to work if you had written this for the URL part of your comment

[[wireshark.org/download.html](http://www.wireshark.org/download.html) ==> [wireshark.org/export](http://www.wireshark.org/export.html)]
  • See it works [wireshark.org/download.html ==> wireshark.org/export] Commented Nov 1, 2011 at 22:09
  • @ Conrad Frix Thank you for this useful information about inline links in comments. I like the feature although imho it does not directly address the discussion, no offense meant. imho, the editor should not have appended the ']' because of the construction sequence; FWIW, it's only my opinion.
    – gerryLowry
    Commented Nov 2, 2011 at 2:36

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