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Today, in our In praise of Math.SE site and its users chatroom I saw the following message:

in Mathematics, 2 hours ago, by Behaviour

Just stopping by to say this user is awesome. Great to have folks like this around.

I know I give a poor contribution to MSE, however, I do not think that it is fair to make jokes about me.

So my question: Is this kind of behavior accepted here?

Remark: my English is not so good, hence it is possible that I misunderstood something. If so, let me know.

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    $\begingroup$ No jokes about you. Check out the url of the link. See also the mathematics chat room transcript linked there. $\endgroup$ – Jonas Meyer Jan 7 '15 at 12:21
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    $\begingroup$ @JonasMeyer, well now there will be jokes about me hahah. $\endgroup$ – Tomás Jan 7 '15 at 12:22
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    $\begingroup$ While that chat comment was meant as a joke, of sorts, there is still an element of truth in it. Read it literally: Just stopping by to say this user is awesome. Great to have folks like this around. I agree, every user is awesome (until proven otherwise), and there's nothing wrong with that. Don't feel bad, you got caught in the trap (like you were supposed to). But the truth is still there. Be the awesome person you are. $\endgroup$ – rolfl Jan 7 '15 at 12:40
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    $\begingroup$ Sorry to have placed that "trap" there (even if only by copying somebody's trap); I'd have hoped the subsequent comments made the situation clear. Personally, I find the "joke" interesting. It is a bit of a personality-test, some users got upset, some were flattered (depending on reading it as ironic or litteraly). $\endgroup$ – quid Jan 7 '15 at 16:22
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    $\begingroup$ There is no problem @quid, I discovered it was intendend to be joke, only after I post my question here. $\endgroup$ – Tomás Jan 7 '15 at 16:29
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    $\begingroup$ I just fell for that joke. $\endgroup$ – Joao Jan 8 '15 at 22:59
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    $\begingroup$ Sometimes a well-placed compliment is the best kind of troll. (I had to think of GLaDOS: "Congratulations [INSERT NAME HERE]! You must be the pride of [INSERT HOMETOWN HERE].") $\endgroup$ – darij grinberg Jan 9 '15 at 14:42
  • $\begingroup$ that kind of behavior is unacceptable. Understand this comment however you like ;) $\endgroup$ – James S. Cook Jan 9 '15 at 17:48
  • $\begingroup$ Taking everybody for a short .. ride $\endgroup$ – Narasimham Jan 9 '15 at 18:14
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    $\begingroup$ This kind of " Behaviour " is accepted here :) $\endgroup$ – mick Jan 14 '15 at 21:34
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    $\begingroup$ This is probably the funniest topic I have seen ever on the StackExchange sites. Thank you, @Tomás! $\endgroup$ – Ahaan S. Rungta Jan 21 '15 at 1:30
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Cheer up! You're not the target of a rude joke in chat. Or, you're not the only target of a joke in chat.

The trick lies in the source of the original comment:

Just stopping by to say [this user](https://math.stackexchange.com/users/current) is awesome. Great to have folks like this around.

Note that it links to https://math.stackexchange.com/users/current, which is the profile of the current user: you! (Without "special powers" you can wean this by paying attention to where the link actually goes to before you click on it.) In your case it goes to your profile. In my case it goes to my profile. And in the case of the reader of this post, it goes to their profile.

So it seems that everyone was the target of this prank. Alternatively — taking rolfl's interpretation — everyone is being flattered by perhaps our most polarising user; take that however you wish.

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    $\begingroup$ No comments =) .... $\endgroup$ – Tomás Jan 7 '15 at 12:21
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    $\begingroup$ @Tomás: Well, there is an upvoted answer... (Rest assured that you were not the only user to fall for this trick. Fundamental had his fun with it; time to let the cat out of the bag.) $\endgroup$ – user642796 Jan 7 '15 at 12:30
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    $\begingroup$ Why do you have cats in bags? I'm calling PETA to report you! $\endgroup$ – Asaf Karagila Jan 7 '15 at 14:28
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    $\begingroup$ Oh, I thought I was special, back to my hole... $\endgroup$ – Ethan Bierlein Jan 14 '15 at 15:00
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    $\begingroup$ @AsafKaragila Have you ever seen a cat in a bag? They absolutely love them!! Although not as much as boxes... (source: I have 4 cats) $\endgroup$ – corsiKa Oct 2 '15 at 21:07
  • $\begingroup$ @corsiKa: I know. $\endgroup$ – Asaf Karagila Oct 2 '15 at 21:10
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I could not give credit at the time without spoiling the fun, but the idea wasn't mine. I rephrased a chat message by Mooseman is eating pizza, which said

This guy is the Hero of Stack Overflow.

Jokes aside, the /users/current/ feature is useful for answering support questions. For example, if you want to tell someone to look at the reputation tab of their profile, this link will work not only for them, but also for everyone else who looks up your answer later. It is

https://math.stackexchange.com/users/current?tab=reputation

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  • $\begingroup$ The evils (or joy) of HTTP cookies... the same link can return completely different content to different clients... as long as they have different cookies. Well... even without cookies you can return varying content based on different client IP addresses etc., which is info also available to the server; that's how whatismyipaddress.com and so forth work. The moral of this story is that you cannot always assume that anyone else sees the same content as you at a given URL. Usually it'll be the same content, but one should not assume that's always the case. $\endgroup$ – Fizz Jan 9 '15 at 11:18

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