I recently came across shorthand links in comments, like [faq], [meta] and [edit].

Obviously they help to circumvent the character length limit in comments, and you could just type them out in full in posts, but as a really handy shortcut is there any reason (apart from development time) that they aren't available to use in posts as well? Are they considered to be links that are used overwhelmingly more in comments than in questions or answers, for instance?

  • 1
    Why, outside of meta, would you ever need these in a post? Jul 13, 2012 at 10:24
  • Well then I might as well ask why they exist for comments :) How about for linking to meta itself, or for highlighting a FAQ section while answering a question? Jul 13, 2012 at 10:29
  • 99.9% of cases you want to use a comment for that kind of meta-info; you are talking about how someone posts then, not about the meat of someone's question. Jul 13, 2012 at 10:32
  • That's a good argument. That's why I wondered whether the shortcuts' availability exclusively in comments was meant to encourage the use of those links in comments and comments only. Otherwise it seems strange to withhold useful functionality from questions and answers. Jul 13, 2012 at 10:38

1 Answer 1


Outside of Meta, there is no need to ever use these links in a post.

They are by their very nature 'meta' information. When you use them, you are commenting on someone's posting behaviour on a SE site.

In an answer or question, they would be off-topic; questions need to be on-topic according to the site FAQ, and answers need to focus on providing a solution to the problem posed.

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