Mangling code or tab separated data:

This    is  tab delimited   data

Rendering of code blocks break tabs.

This is bad for example

  • for code that require tabs (Example).
  • for posts where users paste tab delimited data.
  • and in general ... rude :P

When respondents copy the data or code from a question they get spaces instead of tabs, even if questioner has used tabs. If one click edit the tabs are present, but not in the HTML rendering. Code snippets also get a four space indentation where tab is used.

Should tabs be preserved or at least be an opt out?

CSS has tab-size which can be used as a optional configuration for those who want 1 or 32 spaces per tab or what ever :P


  • 3
    This is particularly important for us since a lot of the questions we get are about parsing text files and having the actual tabs in the example input we copy/paste is essential.
    – terdon Mod
    Commented Jun 26, 2021 at 13:45
  • 1
    While I hope the status-review tag means the developers are considering this, it seems to have been status-declined in the past. The available workaround is quite inconvenient, but unlikely to go away.
    – fra-san
    Commented Jul 2, 2021 at 16:02
  • 1
    @fra-san the status-review was added by me and it only puts this on the devs' radar. They will eventually look at it and then either choose to implement it or not, but the status-review doesn't mean anything other than one of the local mod team (me, in this case) felt this was something they should escalate to SE.
    – terdon Mod
    Commented Jul 2, 2021 at 16:47


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