Certain sites are linked often in posts. Specifically, Wikipedia and other StackExchange questions.

Around 90% of the time I enter a Wikipedia link, the title of the article is what I change my text too.

For instance, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foo could automatically change to:

Foo, Foo (Wikipedia page) or even Wikipedia: Foo

as opposed to:

enter link description here

Edit: Stack Overflow posts are now changing? Has it always been this way and I just didn't notice?

  • Really? About 100% of the time I enter a Wikipedia link, the title isn't what I change the text to. It's usually something like "You can check this wikipedia page for more information". "You can check Foo" seems less useful – Michael Mrozek Nov 13 '11 at 3:32
  • @MichaelMrozek Even if you do it %1 it's still more helpful than text that is always useless. – Pubby Nov 13 '11 at 3:34
  • Yeah, but if it's 1% there are probably better candidates. What if 2% of the time people just say "this wikipedia page" -- should we make that the default? – Michael Mrozek Nov 13 '11 at 3:37
  • @MichaelMrozek What about "Foo (Wikipedia page)"? It makes a reasonable amount of sense in both contexts. – Pubby Nov 13 '11 at 3:47
  • Links to SE questions on the same site or on the per-site meta/parent have had their title converted for a while now, but it's not cross-site. This site (MSO) converts all SE links. Note that it doesn't replace the Markdown text; it only replaces on display. – waiwai933 Nov 16 '11 at 0:56

I think the best option would be to cite the original source, and have the title automatically extracted. This behaviour should be enabled automatically for inter-network sites (such as StackOverflow), Wikipedia, and Google search results; more sites could be added as need be.

I think the best format would be:

Make hyperlink text/description automated for certain sites (Meta StackOverflow)

cbroughton's Profile (StackExchange)

You could always change the text manually, as you can now. But this would be better than the default text of "link".

Google search result example:

PHP Manual (Google)

| improve this answer | |
  • "for google search results"? What do you mean by that? – Mat Nov 13 '11 at 7:42
  • Updated with example – cbroughton Nov 13 '11 at 8:04
  • 3
    Gah. Posting links to google searches is pretty much never appropriate. -1 for suggesting that they should be made "pretty" automatically, i.e. encouraged. – Mat Nov 13 '11 at 8:13
  • I've seen it quite a lot if people ask a stupid question like "Where do I find...". Right now people are posting "LMGTFY" links and hiding them... which is much worse. – cbroughton Nov 13 '11 at 21:55
  • 1
    Don't answer those questions (vote to close/flag/downvote), and edit any instance you find of shortened links, lmgtfy or otherwise. That content must not stay, it is of no value. – Mat Nov 13 '11 at 21:57
  • I'm not the one's answering them. If the search was context or post sensitive (ie: fulltext) you would be able to have a look yourself at how many "LMGTFY" and short-links have actually been UP-VOTED by the community. -- But that's not the conversation at hand. – cbroughton Nov 13 '11 at 22:01

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