As I have been learning the ropes here on Meta, I have been reading and sometimes participating in discussions similar to this where other users have been mentioned by name and berated or mocked for some bad/gaming behaviour. Other times I've seen users simply just commented upon with "I've noticed that this user has a tendency to do link-only self-answers, what should I do?", and I have found myself thinking: "I wonder if they've ever said something similar about me?"
A couple of days ago, as part of this discussion, where a specific user is mentioned for supposedly poor reviewing another user made this comment to the OP:
-1. Exposing another user like this is not appropriate IMHO. You could just post the image without the link to his profile
The OP defended his position and I made a comment backing the OP, because the site favours substantiating claims with facts; especially on Meta those facts are frequently specific (sets of) questions and occasionally specific (sets of) users' behaviour. That is just how things are done, but I do think the objection is valid because when you are linking to a user profile you are targeting that specific user, and not some general behaviour.
So I suggest that one of the abilities that should come with perhaps 1000 or 1500 rep is that the "Responses" on your profile is expanded with "Links/Mentions" - and that this list is populated with mentions (in questions/answers/comments) where somebody have linked your profile.
The point being two-fold:
The community is no longer discussing/snickering behind said users backs, but are offering the criticism more directly.
The user in question have a chance to know that something is not done right, and can act to improve (or defend) it, even when the behaviour is not bad enough to warrant intervention by system or mods. Also, when/if the behaviour improves, the user can flag the links to be removed as obsolete - and hence won't continue to be the laughing stock of everybody who happens to read the post.
The reason I think some reputation is required is from the assumption that more seasoned users will have thicker skin and hence handle the criticism better. I realise that some users will be beyond reach, but I think others would gain from it - and even without the gain, I do feel we all have a right to know when we are being discussed in the open.
Note that this suggestion is NOT for @-mentions in comments, but for links to user profiles.