[Mailman-Users] A scrubber issue

Todd Zullinger tmz at pobox.com
Sun Dec 10 16:21:12 CET 2006

Tokio Kikuchi wrote:
> RFC822 email message without the charset parameter may be assumed to
> be us-ascii.  But for the text attachment, it may or may not be
> assumed.  For example, mailman patch file within the i18n message
> directory will have mixed charset like iso-8859-1 for fr directory
> and euc-jp for ja.  If you assume the charset is us-ascii and made
> archive with ? for unprintable characters, the patch file cannot be
> used.  You are always safe if you save the text file as is in a
> separate attachment directory.
> In short, a text attachment is not a email message.

I may be completely missing something then, but wouldn't a text
attachment be just another MIME part?  Wouldn't that MIME part follow
RFC 2045?  So section 5.2 of the RFC would apply to those parts and
lacking a content-type header (header as used in the RFC applies to
the main mail header and those used in body parts, AIUI) are to be
assumed as text/plain; charset=us-ascii.

It may be that there are many MUA's that don't do this correctly and
thus Mailman can't afford to make the "correct" assumption according
to the RFC, but those sending MUA's would be doing the wrong thing as
far as I can see, no?

I plan on contacting the Gnus folks and mentioning that adding a
content-type header would help to avoid any confusion, but I want to
be prepared to respond half-intelligently if someone points out that
the RFC says without one it should be assumed as text/plain and

I'm reminded of the despair.com poster with a slogan like "There are
no stupid questions, but there sure are a lot of inquisitive idiots."

Thank you for your patience in indulging this inquisitive idiot. :-)

Todd        OpenPGP -> KeyID: 0xBEAF0CE3 | URL: www.pobox.com/~tmz/pgp
Sanity is the trademark of a weak mind.
    -- Mark Harrold

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