Minimal skills

Polytropon freebsd at
Thu Jun 4 22:20:55 UTC 2020

On Thu, 4 Jun 2020 15:22:16 -0600, Brandon helsley wrote:
> I'm doing the indentation myself. Does your mailer do the
> indentation for you or do you do it yourself?

Every half-way decent MUA should do the following:

1. Add a header of what you're replying to.
2. Insert correct citing character as "> ".
3. Allow you to manually break your lines, or do it correctly
   for you (suggestion is around column 70).
4. Keep the references intact ("in reply to" in mail's metadata).
5. Use reply mechanisms (to sender, to list, to all) correctly.
6. Do _not_ mangle the original messages, such as destroying
   the original formatting, rewriting timestamps, turn tabs
   into spaces, multi-spaces into single-spaces, multi-lines
   into single-lines, empty lines into nothing, and so on.
   (Yes, this does actually exist.)

Even Thunderbird ("the standard MUA today") can do this. For
many programs, you need to configure a few things, like prevent
them from sending HTML, but once done, there is no problem.
Some MUAs have more reasonable defaults than others, so you'd
always want to check the actual settings.

Have a look at the replies you got: This is how messages should
look like. Refer to the mailing list archives for more examples,
just judge by the look of "multi-level quotes" and how tidy all
the messages look. As you can see, I have removed the "non-needed"
parts from your message, but left everything that's relevant for
my reply. In "multi-level" discussions this can be even more
complex. There are several styles how people actually reply, as
you can see, but all have in common that they make reading the
message _easy_ and keep the logical structure of a discussion;
it doesn't matter how many newlines are used, if paragraphs are
intended by spaces or tabs, or styling - it depends on your
individual preference.

Just try to not make things more complicated than neccessary. :-)

It all starts with a good MUA for list participation. You already
have a system running FreeBSD. See what mailer program fits your
needs. Configure it properly, and get used to the recommendations
on how to write to the list.

Magdeburg, Germany
Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...

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