Adding links to images in the forum

Hyperlinks can be added to images the same as text but will not show any indication a link has been attached. This can be handy for hiding an email address so it is not exposed to bots.

here is an example of adding a link to your forum avatar image. Right click on your forum icon image and select Copy Image and in the composer panel paste your image:


Select the entire image description you just pasted and click the hyperlink tool to open the Insert Hyperlink panel. I show here how to add a mailto email address to the image but you can add any valid link to the image. If you add a mailto address you must also remove the “http://” portion of the link as shown:


Clicking on the image itself will open a new message window in your default email program set to the linked email address. Right clicking the image and selecting Copy Email Address will copy just the email address to your clipboard. There is no outward indication that the image is linked to an email address and only clicking on the image itself will disclose it. Other url links will act normally but the image will give no indication that there is a link attached.

In case you haven’t noticed, when you add an image you can hover over it in the preview panel and then select from 100%, 75% or 50% to resize it. Once changed you will see the % value added to the hyperlink text and you can adjust this value to any exact % you want.

FWIW, To the best of my knowledge, this would have no deterrence on bots. They are not visually looking for an indcator but instead are perusing the source code that is invisible to the typical user. Within the Source Code of the page, the email address will still be very easily scraped.

You are correct - I just added my mail link to an avatar above and then looked at the source code for the page and it was there in the open. Damn those soulless bots! Smile%20Skull%20Emoji

Below is a procedure I developed some time ago that can be used to disguise your email address from the bots. They scan the HTML looking for patterns, but this uses html encoding to hide it within the code while displaying it properly in the pages. If you have a web site this can allow you to prominently display your contact email without exposing it to the bots.

In the raw HTML, this link is
<a href="http://mailto:%4d%79%45%6d%61%69%6c%40%45%6d%61%69%6c%2e%63%6f%6d">MyEmail</a>
But it displays as MyEmail

LetLocal lvInput = “”
LetLocal lvOutput = “”
LetLocal lvChar = “”
LetLocal lvConvert = “”
GetText “Email Addresss to be converted…”,lvInput

If lvInput ≠ “”

LetLocal lvText = “! " # $ % & ' ( ) * + , - . / 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 : ; < = > ? @ A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z [ \ ] ^ _ ` a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z { | }”
LetLocal lvHTML = “%21 %22 %23 %24 %25 %26 %27 %28 %29 %2a %2b %2c %2d %2e %2f %30 %31 %32 %33 %34 %35 %36 %37 %38 %39 %3a %3b %3c %3d %3e %3f %40 %41 %42 %43 %44 %45 %46 %47 %48 %49 %4a %4b %4c %4d %4e %4f %50 %51 %52 %53 %54 %55 %56 %57 %58 %59 %5a %5b %5c %5d %5e %5f %60 %61 %62 %63 %64 %65 %66 %67 %68 %69 %6a %6b %6c %6d %6e %6f %70 %71 %72 %73 %74 %75 %76 %77 %78 %79 %7a %7b %7c %7d”

    lvChar = lvInput[1,1]
    lvConvert = arraysearch(lvText,lvChar,1," ")
    lvOutput = strip(lvOutput+array(lvHTML,lvConvert," "))
    lvInput = lvInput[2,-1]
Until lvInput = ""

Message {Carefully copy the entire line below. Use it to replace your email address in your HTML pages.}
    +¶ +¶+{<a href="mailto:}+lvOutput+{">}+lvInput+{</a>}


Unfortunately this does not work for this forum. Clicking it does not open a new message in my Mail program and right clicking it and selecting Copy Link Location returns “http://mailto:%4d%79%45%6d%61%69%6c%40%45%6d%61%69%6c%2e%63%6f%6d”. I can definitely see the use in a web page however.

For all its cuteness, I doubt that it really stops those that scrape sites. Especially given is prefix of mailto:

Actually it does work. I’ve had a couple of email addresses posted on a fairly high traffic site for years using this trick. They get very little spam compared to other addresses that didn’t use it. When I had a page on my site that offered a free converter using this script I developed a signifiant amount of repeat traffic from graphic designers who frequently sent me notes about their enthusiasm for it.

While most bots would undoubtedly spot the mailto, I doubt that very many of them are written to parse the tags without an @ or . The encoding is exceptional enough that they just wouldn’t be looking for it.