Consider the title of this question -- it's very long, multiple lines regardless of the size of the browser window..

If I wish to connect to the question, if the cursor is positioned between the lines, there's no link; the cursor has to be positioned on one of the words in the title.

Seems to me that it should be possible to implement the page formatting so that clicking anywhere within the bounding box delineating the text of the title would result in a successful link.

This question (which was shown as a possible duplicate when I started to enter the present question) may be suffering from the same problem; however, that question isn't stated as precisely, has no answer, and has had no activity since October 2016.

  • Not the same problem as the other potential duplicate. This one has no MathJax in the title. (warding off dupe-voters) Feb 26, 2019 at 3:12
  • The whole bounding box, that includes the ask question, so clicking ask won't work anymore, hmmmn, or do i understand this question? Feb 26, 2019 at 3:14
  • margin vs padding Feb 26, 2019 at 3:17
  • @ɪBᴜɢ -- Surely the gap between two consecutive lines of text shouldn't be considered unnecessary, which is how I interpret "padding"? Feb 26, 2019 at 3:21
  • @barbarabeeton Nope. See why I put them in code? I'm referring to the two CSS elements. Feb 26, 2019 at 4:46
  • @ɪBᴜɢ -- Thank you for pointing that out. Unfortunately, I am not fluent in CSS, having depended on others to provide that service. (My expertise is in (La)TeX and their use of fonts.) Feb 26, 2019 at 13:28

1 Answer 1


Not a bug.

The "link" is an anchor tag <a>..</a> which is an "inline" element, not a "block" element. As such, the bounding box is the line, no matter how many times it word-wraps.

The requested change is "possible", and probably without a whole lot of work. I wouldn't think it is needed however. When clicking on text as a link most people expect to click on the text, not "somewhere close to it." You can find the same "problem" in many places in the text of an answer, or comment, where the link is word-wrapped, and the space between is not clickable.

Making a linked block around the text turns the whole space of the title into a hot spot, and adds the marching ants, which I find ugly around text.

  • 1
    Thank you for the explanation of the situation, which I accept. Nonetheless, it is disconcerting not to get the expected result; the device I'm using to visit this site only has a touch pad, which is not as precise as one might wish. Feb 26, 2019 at 12:55
  • 1
    "When clicking on text as a link most people expect to click on the text" Speaking as a youngster with fairly good mousing skills and a reasonably deft hand, I'm going to have to flag that as [citation-needed]. I don't like having to think about where to put the mouse. I just want to move it somewhere over the link and go. Feb 27, 2019 at 4:16
  • @NathanTuggy How often, when not "thinking about where to put the moue" to you choose to click on white space and expect your browser to "go there"?
    – user351780
    Feb 27, 2019 at 4:56
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    In general, if it is styled to "look" like a button, border or coloured zone, etc., then I expect it to "act" like a button, and the enclosed white space is part of the "button". In a table where the cell contains a link and changes colour upon mouse over it feels like a button and I expect the link to be active when not over the text. Often that is not the case, yet I often behave as if the cell was a button, to my disappointment.
    – user351780
    Feb 27, 2019 at 6:24
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    @GypsySpellweaver: When it's a multi-line link? It's happened repeatedly on SE websites alone. When I'm clicking on the spaces between words? Kind of a lot, actually. Both are strengthened by the fact that my browser outlines a box around any link that has focus. So I know if I click three pixels above the top of an "e", it will still act like a link, even though I'm clicking on whitespace. Feb 27, 2019 at 8:08
  • @NathanTuggy The box made by the browser is feedback you're relying upon to know what is a hot zone. The same feedback is available in most browsers with the mouse pointer changing. In the sample question, I expect that the "box" your browser will have a gap between lines, making it look like a pair, or trio, of links. The inter-letter, and inter-word gap may technically be "white space", I'm not sure. The white space I intended was the gap between paragraphs, or the side margins, etc. Any place that's not obviously part of something (click-able or not).
    – user351780
    Feb 27, 2019 at 8:35

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