This chat message:

Hi, http://example.com/a/very/long/url/@Doorknob

renders as this:

but it also pings me, due to the @Doorknob at the end of the URL.

This message:

Here is another sample message.[​](http://@Doorknob)

mysteriously sends me a ping:

This is because the link text consists of a zero width space, which appears invisible. The @Doorknob in the link itself, however, still pings me.

This behavior, when (ab)used by other users, can get extremely annoying.

Could this "feature" be removed, so that pings in URLs do not actually ping people?

  • 20
    -1 I like this feature. Removing this will break my workflow.
    – Optimizer
    Commented Nov 29, 2015 at 16:59
  • 5
    +1 It used to be funny. Now it's just annoying, with people spamming them and begging for mods to teach them how to do the "MLG stealth ping." It wouldn't take that much to fix, just ignore the @ inside links. Commented Nov 29, 2015 at 16:59
  • 1
    I don't know if this stealth ping is seen much on the other networks, but people (especially recently) have been using it a lot on PPCG. Commented Nov 29, 2015 at 17:01
  • @Calvin no point leaving your comment here after you deleted your question. Commented Nov 29, 2015 at 19:54
  • @quartata Is that so? I have seen people that get suspended for repeatedly exploiting a bug after being warned....
    – rene
    Commented Nov 29, 2015 at 20:02

3 Answers 3


This will be fixed in chat build 347. Enjoy!


If it's easy to fix, this probably makes sense. But there might exist too many different ways to break chat pings in this way. Suspending people abusing this is likely easier than fixing every corner case.

Users intentionally annoying other users with hidden pings are breaking the rules and making them stop by suspending them is certainly appropriate.


Here is a probable solution to your

Instead of completely disabling the stealth-ping feature on chat, the users should have the ability to choose whether or not they want the stealth-ping to affect them or not. This means that all stealth-pings will appear to users (you can see who is stealth-pinging who) if they enable the feature. Those who disabled this feature, however, will not be able to see stealth-pings.

If you like stealth-pings, then you don't have to disable the stealth-pinging feature, but if you don't like stealth-pings, then you can disable them.

In this solution, both sides are happy and get what they want.

  • 18
    Stealth pings are a bug, not a feature.
    – Dennis
    Commented Nov 29, 2015 at 19:46
  • 2
    @Dennis Then let's make it a feature instead of a bug!
    – Sock
    Commented Nov 29, 2015 at 19:47
  • 15
    Why would devs waste their time to implement something properly that can only be used to goof around and annoy people. You cannot be serious.
    – Dennis
    Commented Nov 29, 2015 at 19:51

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