#1198 accepted
Robert Black

Quoted Text

Reported by Robert Black | July 7th, 2015 @ 10:45 AM


It appears that when MailMate quotes text from a message, it wraps the text in a html blockquote tag, which makes perfect sense. But unfortunately the most widely used mail client for the Mac, Mail.app, seems to insist that to recognise and format quoted text as being an email quote, the block quote tag must also have an attribute of type="cite"

Apparently the type="cite" is used to differentiate email quoted text from regular html-based quoted (indented) text. It's also used by Thunderbird.

Is it possible for me to edit the default html that MailMate uses to wrap quoted text in to include this type="cite"?

<blockquote type="cite">Quoted text</blockquote>

Many thanks

Comments and changes to this ticket

  • benny

    benny July 8th, 2015 @ 09:15 AM

    • State changed from “new” to “accepted”

    Hmm, I think type="cite" is highly non-standard. Googling suggests that it's only really used by Thunderbird. Are you sure it has an effect on Apple Mail? Have you tried other email clients? iOS Mail?

    The “solution” to this problem (no good solutions exist, because HTML in emails is such a horribly broken concept) is that MailMate explicitly styles quoted blocks. This is likely to be possible fairly soon since it's part of a lot of changes I'm currently doing to be more flexible about the HTML generated by MailMate (primarily to allow inlining arbitrary HTML when forwarding/replying).

    I'll put this ticket in the “accepted” although it's probably kind of a duplicate. I'll update it when I think this problem has been solved.

  • Robert Black

    Robert Black July 8th, 2015 @ 10:53 AM

    I can confirm that both Mail.app on the Mac and Mail on iOS require it (type="cite") to treat and format the text as an email quote instead of just a plain indent

    <blockquote type="cite">Quoted text</blockquote>

    The rationale and history for its use is explained here (and further down): bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=183219#c15

    Removing the type=cite attribute of blockquote is an extremely bad idea. We absolutely need it - it is the only way to (properly and easily) differentiate between a normal mail quote and a generic quote (from Benjamin Franklin or CNET).

    Yes, it's not in the HTML standard. But HTML was not made for email. But neither does HTML disallow new attributes. This has been in use for almost a decade (since Netscape 4 or earlier) and is very well-known. It's a quasi-standard.

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Mac OS X email client.

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