I can be blamed for trying to use the "website" field in my profile for something not in the web, but currently, if I read "website" as "some personal place in the Internet" and try to set it to my gopherhole URL, gopher://sdf-eu.org/1/users/njsg, it is silently accepted but it is stored as http://gopher://sdf-eu.org/1/users/njsg, and that is the target of the link in the profile, even if it just reads gopher://sdf-eu.org/1/users/….

That's also what it shows when I ask to edit the profile again, so it's not something at visualization level, but something related to parsing when changing the profile that only happens once.

So my question here is whether it is possible to remove this rewriting, so that I — and possibly others (one can dream there are some gopher users out there in SE, right?) — can list my gopherhole as the "personal space out there in the Internet", or whether this can at least be trapped so that people don't end up thinking their non-web URL has been accepted when it was, in fact, interpreted as a HTTP URL.

  • 5
    Seriously? Are you from the past? Last count I heard was there were under 200 people on the Internet who still ran Gopher servers. Not really worth optimizing for, is it? Yes, a "website" field expects you to enter the URL to a web page. Those communicate using the http protocol. Commented Mar 20, 2012 at 18:23
  • @CodyGray If I wanted to I could host a web site on the FTP protocol. It's a terrible idea, but the web ≠ HTTP-accessible resources; the web ⊃ HTTP-accessible resources. If that weren't the case, URLs wouldn't be what they are.
    – Kevin Reid
    Commented Mar 20, 2012 at 20:31
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    @KevinReid some people see web as serving HTML over HTTP(S), but really, the web is mostly about the hyperlinks and hypertext, not the protocol — you can even serve web pages over gopher.
    – njsg
    Commented Mar 20, 2012 at 21:13
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    @CodyGray there's no need to be harsh. It may not be worth optimizing, but I guess it would be a good idea to refuse URLs SO/SE is not willing to support, rather than generating something broken that probably isn't even a valid URL. But don't worry, in the meantime I've hacked some html+http together so I can workaround this kind of issues...
    – njsg
    Commented Mar 20, 2012 at 21:13
  • What you call "harsh", I call in good fun. Didn't mean for you to take it that way. The only serious part was I'm not sure this is common enough to be worth much time spent on it. Commented Mar 21, 2012 at 1:58

1 Answer 1


While I gotta give you props for staying loyal to The Gopher State's offspring, it does say "website" right there next to the field.

You can drop your gopher URL into your bio text if you want, but it won't be hyperlinked (and trying to put it in an <a> tag won't help). While in theory it would be possible to whitelist these, in practice keeping the sanitizer strict solves more problems than it causes.

Light a candle in remembrance of the past, and... Set up a website ;-)

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