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QotD: Plain Text vs. HTML

Question: Email: plain text or HTML/styled?

My Answer: Plain text, dammit. Plus, so much spam is HTML that my filters may be biased against HTML email.

You are encouraged to answer the Question of the Day for yourself in the comments or on your blog.

9 Responses to "QotD: Plain Text vs. HTML"

  1. I don't much care either way. I would if I were still using pine, but I migrated to Mail and then Thunderbird long ago, so it doesn't much matter to me.

  2. The internet started with plain text. The internet should stay that way.

  3. While I basically prefer plain text over HTML eMails, yet I have to admit I recently began to love the basic text attributes like italic or bold, to empasize something.

    One should forbid special characters on the ubject line, though 😛 So they would _have_ to write Viagra (instead of ?¡ågr@ or something) and spam filters could have a more relaxed day 😉

  4. I don't care much either way, but I tend to send plain text simply because its the default.

  5. Ill have to go with the plain text too. If anyone really need the extra options HTML-mails give, then they better do proper layout, or else it will just hurt my eyes to look at.

    None, as in not even one, html-email I have received has been well-designed.

    Most email are just short exchanges of info, anyway. Text will do that just fine.

  6. I like the option when my email necessitates or would be enhanced by HTML mail (bold/italics). However that is very rare that I find myself doing it, since I spent years using Pine as my primary email reading application, so the plain text is way is just the de-facto standard. The fact is that HTML email can be nice, but usually it is just as likely to be wasted effort. In all the websites I code if my boss/client wants HTML email sent I always use a PHP class that easily allows me to send a plain text version with it that conveys the same content as much as possible so everyone is included.

  7. plan text, I never had much use for html email. It's just bloating out the message for no good reason. Not allowing html and all it's embedded goodness also helps with spam since the little 1x1 call home images don't get loaded.

  8. Plain text please.

    I would have migrated from Pine to Mail[0] awhile ago, alas, Mail dropped it's support for Unix account (mbox support)[1].

    Maybe one of these days I'll finally dive into Mutt so I can get PGP/MIME support since it looks like it definately won't be added to Pine anytime soon.

    [0]- Actually, I would have began using Mail in addition to Pine. I prefer to keep my mail on the server[0.1] and easily accessible from anywhere via a shell account.

    [0.1]- No, since I migrated from a co-host to I no longer have the ability to use IMAP.

    [1]- It was Mac OS X 10.2 that last had support I think. You can still sort of hack support by setting up a IMAP server locally, but it's exactly that, a hack. *sigh* If only Mail were open source.

  9. E-mail is plain Unicode text. No HTML, no attached Word documents or PDFs, no replacing international characters or typographically correct quotes with a 7-bit ASCII ersatz.

    ∞ Unicode ribbon campaign — No ASCII, anywhere ∞