Problem with links in Markdown

Michel Fortin michel.fortin at
Thu Jun 20 16:16:33 EDT 2013

Le 20-juin-2013 à 14:48, Alexander Veit <lbloom at> a écrit :

> The book of [Life]( "Life textbook").


> which is converted to


> <p>The book of <a href="">Life</a> "Life textbook").</p>

Most Markdown implementations out there do the right thing: matching opening and closing parenthesis. It's just sad that doesn't.

> However, there's probably a solution to this problem. RFC 2396, 2.4.3 defines the left and right angle brackets as delimiters and explains that


>> The angle-bracket "<" and ">" and double-quote (") characters are

>> excluded because they are often used as the delimiters around URI in

>> text documents and protocol fields.


> This means that left and right angle brackets will never occur as part of an URI. So deprecating parentheses, and replacing the parentheses with angle brackets in Markdown's inline link syntax would resolve the problem described. As an additional benefit, this would unify Markdown inline link syntax and reference-style link syntax, and simplify link parsing.

Angle brackets surrounding the URL are supported by most Markdown parsers, but the URL must be kept inside the parens. Unfortunately, only some parsers correctly use them to disambiguate:

Michel Fortin
michel.fortin at

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