Bob Young wrote:
> I know that many share this opinion, and although I don't want to start a
> flame war, I do think there are some valid counter points in favor of html.
> Everyone is of course free to filter content based on his or her own
> preferences. However most of the reasons given against posting html aren't
> really all that strong. In fact the only thing http://www.emailreplies.com/
> suggests is that recipients "*might* only be able to receive plain text
> emails." It goes on to note: "Most email clients however... are able to
> receive HTML and rich text messages." It's pretty rare that a modern email
> client can't deal with html. I would argue that the very few desktops not
> using some flavor of GUI should not force a limiting "least common
> denominator" type policy.
Using plain text makes it much easier for a screen reader to read out a
message to a blind person. It works with every email client, even over
a slow ssh link. It's the standard, and for a good reason.
> The other common reason given against html is storage space/bandwidth
> issues. This is a weak argument also; in cost per megabyte storage is
> dirt-cheap. [...]
Take the worlds email traffic, add 20% to it -- i'm pretty sure you
wouldn't regard that as insignificant.
> Lastly there are some things that are just easier to communicate in a html
> format, diagrams and tables come to mind, we've all seen ASCII diagrams of
> various things and had to stare at them trying to decipher what was the
> author actually trying to communicate. Even in a mostly text message, bold,
> italic, enlarged/reduced, or colored text used for emphasis or de-emphasis
> can make communication much more clear. In short I just think that there is
> this "knee-jerk" reaction to html email in the FLOSS community, and it isn't
> justified by an objective evaluation.
Honestly, how many emails on public lists (such as gentoo-amd64) do you
know that make good use of html? In my experience, this is less than
1%. But let us pretend for a second that people practised tasteful use
of html to enhance their messages as you suggested. The problem is then
that everyone uses a slightly different style, and that looks ugly when
flipping from message to message -- just imagine a magazine with every
page in a different layout. This does not increase readability at all.
Besides, tables work fine in ascii, /adding/ *emphasis* _works_ as
well, and if you cannot manage ascii art you can always attach an image
if you must, just like you would do in html. Hyperlinks also work fine,
just put them inline http://foo.bar/ or reference  them for later use.
P.S. Somehow your quoting mechanism doesn't work correctly, making it
hard to distinguish between your answer and the part of the message you
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