[Mailman-Users] AOL format frustration

Chuq Von Rospach chuqui at plaidworks.com
Sun Jan 4 19:49:32 CET 2004

On Jan 4, 2004, at 9:55 AM, Steve Roitstein wrote:

> I write the messages in the mail program the comes with my mac. I 
> sometimes send out a small jpg attachment but mostly it's text with a 
> bit of color added to a few words.
> Subscribers who are on AOL get the message in a different text, no 
> line breaks, no returns, nothing. Just all text in a huge paragraph, 
> no formatting. Needless to say, these messages are very hard to read 
> and unappealing.

are these primarily Mac users? welcome to AOL hell.

Mac users prior to Jaguar 10.2 or who haven't updated their software 
are on AOL code base 5, which doesn't understand HTML e-mail. Instead, 
they get the text-only version your mail client creates if you're 
sending out formatted/html email.

If you're not sending the e-mail out as HTML, but instead in some form 
of styled text, that's also a problem, becaues the styled stuff is 
stripped out by AOL. what format is the e-mail in? html? rtf?

In any event, you don't have a whole lot of options. The best way to 
deal with this is to send a multi-part HTML/text where you craft each 
piece separately and not have the mail client do it for you. If you're 
really interested in making it look good on AOL, a tri-part adding in 
an text/x-aol (which is a hybrid text with a few htmlish things in it).

but all fo this requires some custom sending tools, you can't build 
this stuff with a standard e-mail client. if you want to stick to 
writing and sending via a client, you're going to had issues with AOL, 
especially if you're mailing to users of older versions of AOL. it's a 
real pain in the butt, without a lot of easy answers. But if you 
aren't, writing your e-mail in HTML is your first step.

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