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How do I disable automatic URL Formatting?

Any url put into trello card becomes unusable after about 3 seconds, if I'm comparing: 



both eventually become "  - huge title with lots of words but nothing that indicates what the url was that was originally placed"

I have a lot of cards with a lot of urls on them, and it looks like all of them are currently doing this, which is breaking my workflow.  I've searched for a couple hours through all the announcements, change logs, and account settings and don't see any discussion about the rollout of this change, nor how to not have the content of the cards changed without warning. 

2 answers

0 votes
Iain Dooley Community Leader May 17, 2021

@tgiokdi firstly, there is a way to do this, just prepend the line with four spaces and it won't apply any auto formatting.

However, you can also just right click a link to copy it, so what part of this is breaking your workflow?

four spaces is a lot more than just ctrl+v

actually seeing the urls is what i'm looking to do.  right now I have card full of checklists of urls to verify or to paste into things, which is impossible with the urls being edited after I enter them in.  It looks like it's all happening on stuff that's being entered in now and not on content that's already in there, so there's a flag that's being set somewhere that's telling the text editor to ping the url that's put in, then edit the text.

I'm at risk of lecturing here, if you need more details, please let me know.  Your flair says "community leader" does that mean you work with Atlassian or are you just a volunteer on the message boards? 

Like Thomas Murphy likes this

Use backticks before the url. 

@Michael Pryor  thank you, but as I mentioned previously, that's additive to undo the formatting, it would be best if this was a toggle on the account level.  


what's the purpose of this functionality? I see that it's happening on Jira as well and is breaking all sorts of things over there as well.  Imagine that I'm sending you a comment and I say: 

"I fixed the cat picture on please confirm you see the cat in a firefighter hat now."

Previously (and with any links created before this change) it remains legible.  with this change it becomes: 

"I fixed the cat picture on | Home of the Internet, cat pictures for every example you could think of! please confirm you see the cat in a firefighter hat now."

Like # people like this

Yes, this is a major bug for us. We use Trello as a web development documentation and task management tool, and it's broken a core function of how we use Trello. I would happily pay Trello more money if they would just stop adding features, or at least give people an option of turning them off.

Like Kevin Terrell likes this

I prefer seeing the bare URLs as well. Using backtics or spaces turns the URL into a code block and the URL is not clickable then. I prefer a bare, clickable URL. I would love Trello to provide a way to disable the automatic formatting.

Like Thomas Murphy likes this

Does anyone want to collaborate on making an open source version of Trello? Atlassian seem intent on destroying it as a useful tool.

Iain Dooley Community Leader May 19, 2021

@Thomas Murphy let's imagine (ambitiously) that 8 people working full time for one year could build a product that is actually as useful and stable and robust and as versatile as Trello is currently (don't forget it works on any device ... ).

Now let's assume it takes 3 seconds to surround every URL you put into Trello with backticks.

Ballpark maths suggest you would need to paste about 18,000,000 URLs before it would have been worth building an open source alternative.

Anyway there are already quite a few open source Kanban projects out there:

Like Thomas Murphy likes this

Great links, thanks!

Your time estimate misses out on a few points:

1. I can't go and edit every instance of anyone else on any trello board my company has used over the past six years of someone adding a URL to a card to add additional formatting.

2. Given the large number of team members and clients also pasting URLs into cards, the time spent begging/pleading with people to add additional formatting is also not estimated.

3. It assumes the only problem Trello has ever had, or will ever have, is this one bug. I was more identifying a broader "death by features" pattern which is emerging.

Iain Dooley Community Leader May 19, 2021

@Thomas Murphy yeah the retroactive update and fixing stuff sent by clients does sound troublesome.

I don't think you can do a match/against in Butler the way you used to be able to with ButlerBot, but this BenkoBot listener adds backticks to URLs added to the description of a card:

You can add it as a listener in BenkoBot:

Although you'd need a "bot user" to run it as so it can ignore its own description changes.

You could run a similar function as a regex using the "adhoc" code to retroactively change past cards. Editing comments is a problem if the user who made the comments is a board admin, you can only edit comments when you're a greater level of access than the person who made them ... but you could set up similar listeners for comments and change them where possible, also for things like creating checklist items. BenkoBot runs Trellinator which is an open source framework I created, the docs are here:

I like the new URL formatting personally, but one of the things I also like about Trello is that the API allows me to make it work how I want most of the time.

I would also like to note for the record that I think Trello have done a great job of innovating in a competitive atmosphere with a very large and unprofitable legacy user base while staying true to the original vision of the product, no doubt under new commercial pressures following their acquisition by Atlassian. I really like the features they've been coming out with, I think they're very Trello-like.

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