When I was reviewing low quality answers, I came across one on this question. Obviously English was not the OP's original language (at least I hope not!).

I couldn't do anything for the answer, but I did go ahead and fix several issues the question had, such as lowercase "i" and changing the class names to CamelCase. Which lead me to a question - I didn't use the escaped version of the ClassName but I'm not sure that's the right thing to do. Conversely I wasn't sure that having a bunch of escaped words throughout the question would improve its quality.

Does anyone have a hard and fast rule? When editing, do you:

  • Automatically escape all ClassName's or anything that references to a specific API call, variable name, etc?
  • Leave whatever formatting the original question had, or
  • Something in between, just using your judgement?`
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    No, don't backtick it all. See here for some discussion. Add inline code only when it's really needed e.g. inline code. – Shadow Wizard is Ear For You Jul 25 '12 at 13:03
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    Looking at the related discussion, I don't think it addresses the same point. Class names are not "random words or phrases" but rather code. Personally I think any writing about programming is clearer when it distinguishes keywords or types as code, distinct from other surrounding text. As a community site, (M)SO develops and should generally reflect community norms of course; but as one member of the community, I humbly disagree with the norm inferred from the linked discussion. – J0e3gan Apr 20 '13 at 17:10
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    @J0e3gan: The entire point of my question in the link is disagreeing with the trend of users using inline code formatting for random words and phrases as opposed to actual identifiers from code, and exploring different ways to combat such abuse of formatting. – BoltClock's a Unicorn Apr 20 '13 at 17:23
  • @BoltClock's a Unicorn: Exactly. That was my read of it. Thanks for reaffirming the distinction. – J0e3gan Apr 20 '13 at 17:39

Personally I tend toward the first "hard and fast" rule you suggest.

DataSet is code; data set is not. The distinction is pretty clear.

Same with asking about ints as a general means of distinguishing types of things (e.g. enumerating user types) versus int as an appropriate return type for a given C# method.

Just my $0.02.


Inline code markup should be used for inline code and "code-like artifacts" (paths, commands, etc.) and essentially nothing else.

Cleaning up posts to format code-like artifacts is reasonable, but not if it's the only thing being done and your edits go to the review queue, then they're too trivial.

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