we aren't getting the "ask format / html question" dialog when sending html mail to two recipients, one prefers plain, one prefers html While testing (both my tree and the shipping tbird 0.6) I noticed that if I send an email to "a" and "b", and one prefers html and the other prefers plain text, we'll down grade to plain text. We don't even ask the user! I think this is strange because the wording of the "ask user" dialog makes me think we should be asking. Take a look at http://lxr.mozilla.org/mozilla/source/mailnews/compose/src/nsMsgCompose.cpp#4116 if any recipient has unknown, we ask the user for a format (ok). if there is a mix between html and plain, we silently downgrade to plain. (yikes!) if all recipients want plain, we use plain. (ok) if all recipients want html, we use html. (ok)
seems like we should ask...except, I guess we're just grossly favoring the prefers plain text user. And I will say that because of my one luddite friend who prefers plain text, if I try send html mail to him and a bunch of normal folks, and this dialog were to pop up, I'd pick plain text.
thanks for the response, david. I agree we should ask in that scenario, because we are going to convert the outgoing message from html to text, and the user should know that before it happens (instead of it just silently happening). patch in hand, testing now...
I understand your reasoning, but: Is there anything reasonable the user can choose other than plaintext or maybe both? Assuming the pref in the card was set correctly, the plaintext user *cannot* receive HTML (or will be upset if he does), but everyone can recieve plaintext. I fear that the user might not be aware (anymore) that one recipient can't recieve HTML and picks HTML for fear of losing the formatting. Should we assume that all MUAs properly support multipart/alternative by now and just silently send "both" in this case?
One thing that might help address Ben's issue is change the text of the setting in the address-book from "Prefers plain text" to "Requires plain text." This is the same issue as bug 187064, which Ben wontfix'd just a couple weeks ago.
I can verify that this change is working as described in Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.0; en-US; rv:1.8a) Gecko/20040510 Another thing that could be done about Ben's concerns: for this particular "one recipient Prefers Plain" case, disable the "HTML only" radio. Also, if the "remember my decision for Unknown recipient[s]" checkbox (per discussion in bug 44494) is implemented: in this case, that checkbox should be unchecked by default. I've considered whether it should be disabled as well, but I don't think that's necessary. In fact, I'd say that in the "one-Prefers-Plain" case, any Unknowns should not be updated, at least until such point as the checkbox is in place. It's not reasonable to mark the Unknown(s) as Prefers Plain if Send As Plain is chosen for the sake of the Prefers-Plain recipient; and if Send As Both is selected, the decision of how sensibly to mark the Unknown(s) is far too complex to describe to the user. (This is related to the issue raised by Ben in 44494 about multiple Unknowns on the recipient list.) I can open another bug for this point if people agree that it's an issue. (Maybe Scott is already suppressing updates of the AB in this case; I can't check because updating the AB -- the patch from 44494 -- doesn't appear to be working in my build.)