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Re: let's look... Re: Standardizing inline PGP for e-mail?

2003-01-24 10:03:32

On Fri, Jan 24, 2003 at 11:08:25AM -0500, Michael Young wrote:

David Shaw wrote:
I think in general that creating a new subtype of text to solve this
problem is a non-starter.  Part of the original problem was that not
enough mailers supported PGP/MIME (or indeed, MIME in general)
sufficiently well.  I suspect that using a new subtype will eventually
end up as "PGP/MIME lite" and will similarly not be supported.

The point is that the "lite" form is displayed reasonably even in
agents that don't "support" it.  They show it as text.  When
confronted with multipart/signed, some agents display the pieces
as attachments or not at all; this makes reading the text painful,
and verifying the signature manually even more so.

I think we've seen in this thread that the "lite" form is not
displayed at all in agents that don't support it.

There will always be some email client that can't handle the new
content-type.  One of the main complaints about PGP/MIME is that it
does not degrade well, and this has the same problem.  Even mutt,
(which Thomas should know well ;)), had a problem with his test mail
until I went in and mucked with the configuration.  Why go out of our
way to make regular clearsigned messages more confusing and much more
likely to Just Not Work for fiddling reasons that are going to be
different on every single mailer?

Getting fancy here feels good and we can produce all sorts of
interesting documents that most MUA writers will ignore, and argue
about little details until we are blue in the face, but it does not
fix the actual problem we're having in the real world.

Thomas' original suggestion to use UTF8 encoding along with text/plain
works very nicely on several levels.  First, it works without forcing
the MUA author to do anything.  Second, in most cases even if MUA "A"
does it slightly wrong (say, not doing the UTF8), MUA "B" can still
handle it.  It's simple.  It works.  Where is the problem?


   David Shaw  |  dshaw(_at_)jabberwocky(_dot_)com  |  WWW
   "There are two major products that come out of Berkeley: LSD and UNIX.
      We don't believe this to be a coincidence." - Jeremy S. Anderson

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