The jsfiddle linking restriction gives you a popup:

"Links to jsfiddle.net must be accompanied by code."

When I encountered that popup, I found it to be counter-intuitive and to require explanation. However, to find out why the rejection exists, I had to: > try to copy the term from the popup (you can't right click > copy it) > do a google search > find a related meta question > and assimilate the reasoning in the meta question in order to understand the popup's point.

I really think it needs improvement to be very explicit about the desired behavior and why hoops have to be jumped through, which I would re-term as this:

"Links to jsfiddle.net must also be accompanied by code blocks to ensure the basic code logic posted survives along with the answer."

Or a similar explanation of why additional action is required. If language can be found that is clear enough enough, then perhaps the popup will stand on it's own. If not, perhaps a link to a faq entry or the meta thread is in order.

  • 15
    It is pretty self explanatory...
    – user7116
    Mar 20 '13 at 20:33
  • 3
    I guess "code" is a little vague, but what did you think it meant? Mar 20 '13 at 21:14
  • I guess I wasn't explicit/specific enough myself. I think the problem is not "what do I have to do to make it so that I can mechanically complete my answer post" but rather, why does jsfiddle.net specifically seem to be off-limits when in the past it was never an issue, and the stack-overflow code syntax coloring does not provide anything like the desired functionality. My first thought, for example, was along the lines of "is there a problem with jsfiddle functionality that I'm not aware of" and my second was "so now I have to copy and paste code in two places, violating the DRY principle".
    – Kzqai
    Mar 20 '13 at 21:20
  • I'm not sure what question you read, but my understanding is the fiddle restrictions are so people don't have to click yet another link and visit yet another place to see your code. That's just ridiculous.
    – ɥʇǝS
    Mar 20 '13 at 21:25
  • 2
    I'm personally not adverse to the message change. It would provide a short rationale, which can indeed result in less frustration for new, well-meaning users. (The other, less-well-meaning users who caused that filter to be implemented in the first place probably won't read the message either way.) Mar 20 '13 at 21:29
  • 1
    That's an argument against pastebin or other code-only posting locations. jsfiddle.net runs html, css, and js code. And it does it well, in the same way that ideone.com runs sandboxed php well for explanations. Stack overflow just -colors- code, so totally not the same level of benefit. And the meta question (with status-completed) that I came to was here, though who's to say that others would find the same question if they wanted to know why the restriction: meta.stackexchange.com/questions/149890/…
    – Kzqai
    Mar 20 '13 at 21:31
  • 1

Pretty much no error message explains why, and I've personally never run across one. When you encounter an error like "your username must be at least 4 characters" I'm sure your first though isn't "why?" Error messages are meant to explain what you need to fix, not to explain why you need to fix it.

If you really want to know why a website has certain rules because you're just curious, want to disagree, or whatever other odd reason, then go look it up, like you did. But giving a user a long line of text to read for a simple error seems even more counter-intuitive. That's like going to a retirement home and asking a simple question: "Well, sonny, way back in the day we did it this way because..."

  • I'm a developer, so yes, yes "Why" would be the first thing that I would think given a password length error. And when my bank tells me that my password can't contain special characters or can't be more than 14 characters, I question using that bank, and when a development Q&A site makes it more complicated to use a code-running tool, I feel compelled to ask why. Because if a rule is arbitrary, ... then it tends to lessen my experience. I expect other developers will as well. That is the problem here. Without clarifying -why- in the slightest, it feels like a draconian/arbitrary rule.
    – Kzqai
    Mar 20 '13 at 23:29
  • 1
    The actual rationale behind the rejection is... ...logical, but the sparse rejection message just seems arbitrary and counter-intuitive and requires extra work without an apparent reason if no simple explanation is included. shrugs
    – Kzqai
    Mar 20 '13 at 23:38
  • 2
    @Kzqai: You probably stand alone on that. A vast majority of users only want to know how to fix the problem so they can get through the process. Nobody wants to read a book to find out they just need to add another character to their username. They're meant to be short, concise, and to the point.
    – animuson StaffMod
    Mar 20 '13 at 23:42

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