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Re: A generic reply about HTML mail: no dinos

At 12:04 -0500 16/2/98, D.I.G. wrote:
>Yours truly is suffering now from an extreme case of "let's all kill the

>3) We monitor "client usage" on a day to day basis as part of our web
>publishing research: It is absolutely, statistically clear and
>undeniable (no matter what you would all love to believe about your
>favorite e-mail or browser client) that MS and Netscape clients DOMINATE
>the web and that they all ship with HTML mail as STANDARD features: MS
>Outlook Express and Netscape Messenger.

The thing which is important here is what the breakdown of mailers
on *this* mailing list is.

An analysis of nearly a thousand e-mails posted recently to this list
gives the following.  (derived by interrogating the X-Mailer header to
find the client name).

30% didn't report the name of their mailer (which means they are
almost certainly old, text based, mail programs).
14% were netscape mail (various versions)
14% were Eudora (various versions)
10% were Microsoft (various programs, about 6% version 4 or above)
8% were AOL (I don't know whether AOL e-mail can cope with HTML
             content - I suspect not, they were just the next significant
             mail client type).

So around 30% might be able to read HTML encoded pages (my version
of Eudora for example can read them but won't create them).

This says nothing about the programs used by people who read but rarely post.

Colour me what ever colour you like, but this doesn't look like

Regardless of the usage in whichever corporate sector your web publishing
serves, in *this* case 70% of the posters to this list are being
disadvantaged in some way by HTML or otherwise enhanced mail packages.
Remember also, if your own statistical basis is replies to MAILTO tags
in web pages, these are highly likely to be skewed towards the browser
based e-mail.  Even if the user normally uses a different mail package
the browser based mail package is what is opened automatically by the
browser when clicking on a mailto.

>From the tone of your e-mail it would appear that various people have
been somewhat vociferous in their responses.  If you've ever seen
what happens when HTML enhanced or RTF e-mail gets displayed in non
capable packages I think you'd realise why.

--- Derek