On Saturday, 27 September 2003 at  0:32:22 -0500, Dan Nelson wrote:
> In the last episode (Sep 27), Greg 'groggy' Lehey said:
>> [Format recovered--see http://www.lemis.com/email/email-format.html]
>> On Friday, 26 September 2003 at 14:26:38 -0500, Eugene Lee wrote:
>>> On Fri, Sep 26, 2003 at 04:48:49AM -0700, Kris Kennaway wrote:
>>>> 1) Please wrap your lines at 70 characters so your emails may be
>>>> easily read
>>> Just curious, is "format=flowed" disallowed here?
>> I don't see anything in the standards that defines this format, so I
>> suppose the answer should be "yes".  On a more practical basis, I
>> don't know of any UNIX-based MUA which treats this correctly, and
>> none of the messages I looked at it had this attribute.  In addition,
>> I can't see how "format=flowed" can distinguish between computer
>> output (which should be quoted unchanged, possibly with very long
>> lines) and text, which RFC 2822 recommends to be 78 characters or
>> less.  It also makes it almost impossible to quote.
>> So yes, it's "disallowed" in the sense that it's discouraged, and
>> that a number of people, myself included, tend to delete such
>> messages unread.  Follow the URL below for more details.
> RFC2646 defines format=flowed, and does a pretty good job of explaining
> the wrapping, joining, and quoting rules.

Hmm, interesting.  I've added it to
http://wwww.lemis.com/email/email-rfc.html.  I suppose there are other
places where I should refer to it as well.

> The nice thing about correctly-generated format=flowed text is that
> it looks just like regular text, so a MUA that doesn't understand
> flowed text can still display perfectly readable output.  Paragraphs
> are wrapped at 72 chars, and a trailing space is added at the wrap
> point as a hint that the next line is a logical continuation.  Lines
> not ending in a space are not flowed, so it's easy to specify what
> text will be flowed and what won't.

Yes, if the MUA (and the user) adhere to the conventions.  I've taken
a look at the messages I've received recently with format=flowed, and
they're all < 80 characters long.  That's the intention of the RFC, of
course, but it happens so regularly that I wonder whether my MTA is
reformatting.  That doesn't appear to be right, though.

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