I have noticed that a link to an answer is no longer oneboxed when used in the format https://site/questions/question-id#answer-id. They are still oneboxed in the format https://site/a/answer-id. You can see some experiments with this in the chat sandbox. For example, https://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/313295/on-which-stack-exchange-do-you-get-the-quickest-answers#313296 is not oneboxed while https://meta.stackexchange.com/a/313296 is oneboxed.

In the past, both formats used to be oneboxed. Here is one example. EDIT: As pointed out in Sonic the Inclusive Hedgehog's answer the example I linked uses the old format https://site/questions/question-id/question-title/answer-id#answer-id which has been changed recently. Still, I suppose that the links in the format provided by the SE site probably should be oneboxed. (When the links had the old format, they used to be oneboxed.)

This is probably also a reason why the question feeds when posted in chat are now displayed differently. Compare the post from yesterday and about a week ago. Both of them come from this question feed. It is the feed of the question Tag management 2018 on Mathematics meta.

Just to address the comments saying that the format which is currently non-oneboxed is non-standard (because it differs from the "share" link): This is format of the link you get in the address bar when you land on an answer on a SE site using almost any reasonable way I can imagine. (Up to some modifiers such as noredirect=1, lq=1, rq=1, cb=1, etc.) For example, try clicking on https://meta.stackexchange.com/a/313296 https://meta.stackexchange.com/a/313296 If you then check the address bar, you can see the link looking like this: https://meta.stackexchange.com/questions/313295/on-which-stack-exchange-do-you-get-the-quickest-answers#313296.

Another fact which can be considered as a supporting evidence that this could be considered - at least to some extent - a standard format it the fact that this is what you got from feeds until a very recent change. Here is the source of a message posted in a chatroom from question feed which has exactly this format. I suppose that there were some changes to feeds functionality, since message from the same feed posted yesterday looks differently.

(As a side note, the advantage of the format which contains both question-id and answer-id is for searching purposes. If you post it in chat or save it in a local file or do something else, you can find the link when you search for question-id and also when you search for answer-id.)

  • How you even get that format? The formal format is via the "share" link, and that's working. So, not sure SE should onebox non formal formats like that. Jul 30, 2018 at 9:07
  • @ShadowWizard I have edited the post to address your comment.
    – Martin
    Jul 30, 2018 at 10:05
  • I don't know what onebox means. Are you talking about URL text that get turned into shortened hyperlinks, dropping the full URL itself? (Yes, this is even after I looked at the examples. I'm assuming this is what's being talked about, but am not certain as I find the word so strange.) Update: Yes, I'm right. I just checked the onebox tag with its descriptive text. Is this an SE-specific term? Jul 30, 2018 at 14:24
  • @JasonBassford Some brief explanation of oneboxing can be found in the corresponding tag-info. And here are some examples of oneboxed messages in chat. EDIT: AFAICT you're correct in saying that this term is specific for Stack Exchange chat.
    – Martin
    Jul 30, 2018 at 14:28
  • 1
    @Shadow See my answer; SE made a change in how they handle links to answers. Jul 30, 2018 at 18:08

1 Answer 1


A little while ago, the style for a full-form link to an answer changed from:




I'm not sure why this change was made, but I'm guessing it's to make it clear to search engines that they're in fact looking at the same page. I used to sometimes see search engines list answers to questions as separate results, because the URLs to answers were technically different URLs from the questions (after removing ? and #).

It seems that this has broken chat oneboxing, which I believe is still expecting the original form of full-form links. This is why you're seeing this bug. It would be great if I got further insight from the team as to why exactly they made the above change to full-form links to answers.

  • Thanks, I haven't noticed the change in the url. Interestingly from the reponses tab I got link to your answer in the old format. I have just tested in the chat sandbox that this indeed makes a difference.
    – Martin
    Jul 30, 2018 at 18:10
  • @Martin I just believe that page hasn't caught up yet, and old links continue to work to prevent links from external sites from breaking. Jul 30, 2018 at 18:11

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