On Sep 22, 2010, at 9:26 AM, Jari Arkko wrote:
The primary argument in favour of inline responses is that they allow
context to be retained.
Yes. Context is essential to understanding why a comment is being made. For
instance, the poster may support or disagree with a particular assertion
expressed earlier in the discussion.
However, sometimes I see posters on some lists fall back on a simpler form of
retaining context, where the unabridged discussion history gets quoted on all
new messages. I don't know if we slip into this mode out of convenience or
because we somehow assume that the other readers (and their mail tools) on
the list are stateless and have no memory of past events.
My theory is that email user agents have somehow, overall, become less
functional over time in allowing people to quote portions of previous messages
and insert new text into such quoted messages. I think this actually got worse
when it became conventional to compose messages (and quote replies) in HTML.
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