How to edit Jira links autocreated 'Smart Links' from Display Inline to URL (Confluence links as well)

Table of Contents

What happens when you paste in a URL in Jira or Confluence

Whenever you paste in a URL into Jira (cloud) or Confluence (cloud) it is automatically changed to appear as Display Inline.

You paste in the link https://www.wikipedia.org/ and it gives you:

I think the majority of users don’t like this (it is ok for Jira or Confluence links). Atlassian calls this a Smart Link (insert joke here).

You cannot:

  • disable smart links in Jira cloud
  • disable smart links in Confluence cloud
  • change the default links to Display URL
  • turn off Smart Links on an instance
  • turn off Smart Links on a Jira project
  • turn off Smart Links on a Jira issue
  • turn off Smart Links on a Confluence space
  • turn off Smart Links on a Confluence page
  • bulk edit links in Jira
  • bulk edit links in Confluence (app we created to do this)


You get the point.

Workarounds

Two imperfect workarounds.

They only work to change individual links from this (Display Inline) to https://www.wikipedia.org/ (Display URL) or Display Card in Jira or Confluence.

1. Reverse each link after pasting

Paste the link (e.g. https://www.wikipedia.org/). Once it displays inline like this:

press Ctrl + Z (Windows) or Cmd + Z (MacOS)

This will revert the link to a blue link.

2. Use http:// or https://

I don’t like this one, but here it is as suggested by Atlassian.

“When inserting the link, be sure to use http:// instead of [https://|https:]. The Smart Card feature will not be activated, and upon visiting the URL, it will automatically redirect to https:// for these services.”

Note: these workarounds do not work for the end user (the most important person).

'Solution' Atlassian is proposing
(spoiler it is not a solution)

When inserting/pasting in a link use:

Cmd+Shift+V (Mac), Ctrl-Shift-V (Windows)

This is a common shortcut to insert unformatted text when copying between different programs that support formatting (bold, italics…) to make sure do not insert unwanted formatting.

This ‘solution’ is not yet live. The Atlassian issue was updated January 31, 2022 to say that this is THE solution and that it is being worked on (https://jira.atlassian.com/browse/JRACLOUD-72429).

This comment on the issue by Doug Byrne sums up for me why it’s not a solution:

“Any workaround that depends on the Author taking some action will not work because it doesn’t do anything for the person who is reading. If a user submits a problem report and the URL has been transformed into a smart link, they may not realize that’s a problem, and they will not know about any special steps to take.”

Bookmark this page, we will keep you updated when the change has been made.

Note:

You have to change links one by one. Neither this nor one of the two workarounds is a Jira link manager or Confluence link management solution.

No way to change the Jira URL format or the Confluence URL format.

Confluence app to bulk convert links

If you use Confluence, especially if you use Confluence for documentation, then consider trying for free this app we created. It makes it easy to bulk change links in Confluence. Read more about the app on this page.

Or see it on the Atlassian Marketplace: Easy Link Editor for Confluence

Link management to:

  • bulk change links to Display URL
  • bulk change links to Display Inline
  • reverse smart links
  • standardize pages
  • improve security

Share your suggestions to fix the problem with 'Smart Links'

Have ideas on how we might be able build a Jira app to help deal with this problem?

We have created a Confluence app, Easy Link Editor for Confluence, that helps, I hope you will evaluate it. We would welcome your ideas on how to improve it.

Email me, Stavros Rougas, stavros@expertisefinder.com with ideas or to set up a Zoom.

Or share in the comments below.

Atlassian open issue on the topic

From Atlassian: Option to Disable Smart Links For Non-Atlassian Products in ADF editor

It was created in July 2019, approaching 400 comments.

To stay updated on Smart Link changes and alternative in Jira and Confluence

Send me updates

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.