[Users] About the base64 problem with Yahoo

Steve Litt slitt at troubleshooters.com
Thu Oct 17 04:06:28 CEST 2013

Hi all,

Starting in early October, a lot of Yahoo email came in base64 in the
plain text part. I complained on a Yahoo list, and of course they
blamed Claws.

The problematic emails all have the following:

Content-Type: multipart/alternative;
 boundary="whatever jibberish"

Content-Type:  text/plain;  charset=utf-8 
Content-Transfer-Encoding: base64 

The preceding two lines define the first part, the text part. Note that
if I click the little button to read the HTML part, it's readable.

Here's my question:

* What do the RFCs say about the necessity of a mail client decoding a
  text/plain; charset=utf-8 that's encoded base64. I'd love to be able
  to tell them "sorry, the RFC's say that's a no-no, the bug is with
  Yahoo for base64ing the text part of the message".

If the RFCs say an email client *should* convert the base64 in the plain
text part of an email, be aware that this is going to happen more and
more as more and more people are in Yahoo Groups. Yahoo has little
incentive to change, because most other clients either convert, or show
the HTML by default, or both.



Steve Litt                *  http://www.troubleshooters.com/
Troubleshooting Training  *  Human Performance

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