From: Russ Allbery (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Mon Jul 29 2002 - 00:13:04 CDT
Bernie Cosell <email@example.com> writes:
> What's odd is that I'd have thought that email would have the same
> problems with 8-bit stuff as news does --- surely non-ASCII folk would
> like to have their *actual* names in the 'From' and 'To' fields, to be
> able to set up proper "Subjects". Even relatively minor things like
> being able to properly spell their Organization: name...
> How/Why is the IETF (politically) ignoring this? -- just allowing 8-bit
> newsgroup names would seem to be a minor part o the thrust to 'fix'
> email headers...
Mail, from a standards perspective, uses RFC 2047. It mostly works.
Some European countries have a policy of just sending untagged eight-bit
character sets in mail and accepting them and interpreting them as local
character sets. This mostly works if the people you're corresponding with
all use the same character set as you. It breaks if they don't.
The IETF will respond that the solution for the forseeable future is to
use RFC 2047. This is not that bad of an answer. Nearly all mail and
news clients support it to some degree these days, although some are much
better than others. It generally works better than any of the
alternatives if you're in an environment where you can't assume a single
character set. It doesn't work as well as just-send-eight if you can
assume a single character set.
-- Russ Allbery (firstname.lastname@example.org) <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>