TechWhirl (TECHWR-L) is a resource for technical writing and technical communications professionals of all experience levels and in all industries to share their experiences and acquire information.
For two decades, technical communicators have turned to TechWhirl to ask and answer questions about the always-changing world of technical communications, such as tools, skills, career paths, methodologies, and emerging industries. The TechWhirl Archives and magazine, created for, by and about technical writers, offer a wealth of knowledge to everyone with an interest in any aspect of technical communications.
Subject:Re: =20 From:"Gail M. Hall" <gmhall -at- APK -dot- NET> Date:Thu, 10 Dec 1998 08:02:01 GMT
On Wed, 9 Dec 1998 15:27:02 -0500, you (Nancy this-address-is-valid McGough
<nm -at- NOADSPLEASE -dot- II -dot- COM>) in a message to TECHWR-L -at- LISTSERV -dot- OKSTATE -dot- EDU wrote:
>On Wed, 9 Dec 1998, I wrote:
>> If we were all using mailers that understood how to send and
>> receive MIME messages, we'd never see "=20" at the end of a line.
>I should have also said: And if our messages passed through
>gateways that do not strip MIME headers. All the messages I've
>sent to this list were Bcc'd to another account of mine and those
>copies arrived with their MIME headers, i.e.:
> MIME-version: 1.0
> Content-type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII
>But, the copies of my messages that I got via the list had the
>MIME headers stripped out. Then I started looking through
>messages in the list and found messages that started out with
>blurbs like this:
>This message is in MIME format. Since your mail reader does not understand
>this format, some or all of this message may not be legible.
>My mailer, Pine, understands MIME very well so this message,
>along with all the quoted-printable encodings I see on this list
>raised my suspicions. Of the 742 messages I have archived from
>this list, NONE of them have the Content-Transfer-Encoding
>header. Some of them have this "header" in the body of the text,
>but none of them have it in the actual header. My guess is that
>the mailing list management software for this list is stripping
>MIME headers and thus making it impossible for MIME-aware mailers
>to decode the messages and present them without those ugly =XX
>characters. It would be great if this could be fixed...
It is important to have a mail reader's options set to be compatible with the
mail you get. This listserv allows people to use SET MIME or SET NOMIME
according to the subscribers preferences. But if you have your messages set
to MIME, then you should set your mail reader to accept them as MIME.
As someone else pointed out, it is also important to set the character set
properly. In my mail reader I have the choice between "7 bit / 8 bit" or
"quoted printable." In the help file, it says that "quoted printable" is in
7 bits only and that if a character is normally 8 bits it is displayed as an
equal sign plus the numeric code for the character. (I think it is in hex,
but I don't remember for sure.)
Anyway, it looks like the people who are posting messages with "=20" and
other codes are using Quote Printable and the listserv is not able to
translate those messages properly. My reader's help says that my software
should be able to display them properly, but if the listserv is mangling
those messages, then something will get in the way of having them show up
I also wonder if some business mail systems mangle people's messages, too,
meaning that a third variable comes in there as a way of messing things up.
Gail M. Hall
gmhall -at- apk -dot- net