FAQ: Should I @name mention other users in my post?

What is @name mentioning?

@name mentioning is when you type someone's username with an @ preceding it. Doing this sends a notification to the user. Depending on their settings, it may also send them an email message.

For example, with @JacqueHousteauGram in my text, Jacque here will be dynamically notified in community (and via email if he's configured for it).

Please don't use this feature excessively

In general, it is considered bad form to @name mention someone not otherwise engaged in the conversation.

Why should I limit how much I @name mention others?

It can be annoying

  • Active people who were being frequently mentioned in topics were first to request that this practice be minimized. Some people may not mind being mentioned, but we'd still like to limit the number of notifications these folks get.
  • @name mentioning a user will often send them an email. Abuse of this feature can fill up someone's email inbox.
  • Some community members feel that too much unsolicited pinging discourages them from participating in the long-run. It can be overwhelming to be on the hook to reply to any and all follow-up.

It is often unnecessary

  • Active users often get notifications of new posts and watch the site regularly anyway.
  • Posting to the best category with a descriptive title will usually get your topic more attention than mentioning specific users.
  • In general, this community prefers to keep discussions focused on ideas and not individual users. If you do not feel your post has received the attention you’d like, we encourage you to reformulate it rather than call in specific people.

Can I ever @name mention other users?

Yes! We just ask you to use it thoughtfully and sparingly. Some good uses of @name mentioning:

  • To clarify who you are responding to, in a conversation that has multiple participants
  • To give credit to someone from whom you learned the information you are passing on
  • In rare cases, to draw a specific person's attention if they truly are the only human being in the world who could address a point in the discussion

Moderator guidelines for handling excessive mentioning

Admittedly, it's not always clear where to draw the line between a reasonable mention of another user and an abuse of this feature. But think about the following escalating interventions.

  1. Send a PM: if it doesn’t happen often, or if it's just one user and you don’t want to make an off-topic reply. Keep it friendly! :slightly_smiling_face:
  2. Make a public statement: If it starts to happen more often and other users seem to think that’s a norm here. Keep it friendly :grinning: , no shaming.
  3. Edit the posts and remove the mentions: If it happens so often that every new user seems to get influenced by the pattern.
  4. Flag and hide posts: If users won’t stop even after multiple pleas.

Got something to ask? Or add?

FAQ posts are closed to replies. If you have any questions or suggestions, please visit the corresponding discussion thread: FAQ Discussion: Should I @name mention other users in my post?