HTML by default in KMail

Jussi Schultink jussi01 at
Sun Aug 8 06:22:33 BST 2010

On Sun, Aug 8, 2010 at 7:57 AM, Yuval Levy <ubuntu08 at> wrote:
> On August 7, 2010 02:24:28 am Tres Finocchiaro wrote:
>> From a user's perspective, I find it very (very) naive to rule out all html
>> formatting by default.
> from that same perspective, I beg to differ.
>> Red letters and bold fonts can go a long way when getting a message across.
> sure: distract from content to formatting.  obstruct accessibility for the
> color blind.  prevent speed-reading.
> using *simple* _formatting_ ist most efficient for getting a message across, and
> if something more graphic is required, attach it.

No, it isnt IMHO. This is just like having a conversation, different
people use different words, but also different tones of voice, and
different volume levels. Formating your text and adding markers to
convey tones, or emphasis is a good thing.

>> I feel too often that stripping features in the name of security can only
>> go so far.  There needs to be a middle ground where we aren't all typing
>> in gedit (or in this case, kate).
> I don't feel that this is "stripping" in the name of security (although I
> appreciate the benefit of not having to worry about malicious or simply
> resource-wasting payloads).
> In fact, AFAIK HTML has been *added* to email by a vendor with the  "adopt
> extend destroy" strategy; and indeed this "extension" has contributed to the
> destruction of email by spam and malaware.
> Users read faster a text that is written in a familiar font and displayed in
> familiar colors.  Consequence: don't let sender change my display font with
> HTML (or any other kind of formatting markups).  Let the user determine how
> content is displayed on their screen.

As I mentioned with the conversation example, the ability to convey
more than just words is a good thing. Each person has a different
style and by not allowing the ability for the sender to decide which
style they send removes a big amount of  what the sender is conveying.

> Those who researched speed-reading and studied/applied the techniques will
> tell you that fixed-width font is better than variable-width font.  Why not
> using a fixed-width font by default?
> For enough users, color is not a choice.  whether they are color-blind or they
> otherwise need high-contrast or low-contrast environments, HTML is a nightmare
> for them.

We cannot please everyone here, and I mean that seriously. We have
choices in Linux, users can customize to their choice. We need to look
out and think about the most sane defaults, with the majority of users
in mind.

2 euro cents from me. :)


> My 2 cents go for keeping email text-based.  For the rest, there is
> GoogleWave, and there are attachments.
> Yuv
> Yuv
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