Plaintext Struggle?


I’ve always thought it’s important to choose our fights. This becomes more apparent when we take into account the resources we currently have, time being the most important one, in my opinion. It’s also important to know which ones are even worth fighting for.

With so many things going on around us, and the info on such things being readily available on our fingertips (i.e. through the internet), it’s easy to be overwhelmed which ones to tackle first.

Let me tell you a personal anecdote.

Sometime last year, I learned about the importance of using plaintext in emails and the etiquettes that come with it. I thought of implementing this newfound lesson on my next job.

When I finally got a job early Aug 2021, I set up my corporate email client (MS Outlook, what else) so that it uses plaintext. I also tried regularly trimming the emails so the threads didn’t get too long, keeping only the pertinent details as I replied and forwarded them. I thought this would maintain the natural flow of the conversation.

This didn’t last long—someone called me out on this weird trend I was trying to push, and “why does your email look like that?” What they meant, of course, was my emails, being in plaintext, weren’t beautified in HTML, with all the URLs being exposed, and the images and logos gone.

I realized then that using plaintext in emails in a corporate environment wasn’t worth the headache of having to explain to my colleagues (perhaps, again and again) the logic behind it. I went back to having HTML in emails so as to not attract unwanted attention.

Outside of work, I still use plaintext. So should you, Reader.



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