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In answers, when people refer to other users they put a "@" before the username, like "@someuser said this and that". What's the function of the "@"? Is it to make clear to the reader that it's a username? Or for a script so that it can convert it to a link to the user's profile (future enhancement)? In that case, what about duplicate names?

Do I have to use the "@"? If so, do I have to concatenate names with spaces in them: @FedericoRusso?

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This Meta Post explains how the @lerting works in detail.

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click the help link under [add comment] to see a summary of the available formatting options, and basic documentation that answers your question about replies.

commenting help

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    \$\begingroup\$ Thanks Jeff. But my actual question was about names in answers, not comments. But while we're at it, this notification, is this also work when the name is somewhere in the body of the comment, or only at the beginning? And what about duplicate names? \$\endgroup\$ – Federico Russo Jul 2 '11 at 9:40
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    \$\begingroup\$ @federico oh, sorry -- in answer bodies the use of @username in any form is completely irrelevant to our software and has no effect whatsoever. @username is only relevant in comments as documented above (click the "help" link next to the [Add Comment] button). \$\endgroup\$ – Jeff Atwood Jul 2 '11 at 9:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Federico I know many of us use @username in answers just to keep it standard anywhere we type a username. As for duplicate names, if I understand correctly, if it is in a comment it will notify anyone who is a potential match. It may be more advanced then that, but I am not sure. \$\endgroup\$ – Kellenjb Jul 2 '11 at 11:05
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Federico This meta post should tell you more about how the @name works in comments. \$\endgroup\$ – Kellenjb Jul 2 '11 at 11:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Kellenjb: thanks, the meta post you linked to answers all my questions. \$\endgroup\$ – Federico Russo Jul 2 '11 at 15:09

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