Wrapping long lines (Was Re: FAQ update suggestion for "I'm having basic problems with find. Why?")

Brian Dessent brian@dessent.net
Fri Jul 9 01:03:00 GMT 2004

Eduardo Chappa wrote:

> We may agree or disagree about format=flowed sent to this
> list, but we have to agree that what was sent was an e-mail message,
> perfectly valid e-mail message to a mailing list and not a web page to a
> web site.

RFC2822 (which obsoletes the old RFC822) states in section 2.2.1:

There are two limits that this standard places on the number of
characters in a line. Each line of characters MUST be no more than 998
characters, and SHOULD be no more than 78 characters, excluding the

Wrapping lines at less than 80 characters is the standard accepted way
of sending text email.  It's the least common denominator that's
guaranteed to work everywhere.  It's just like HTML email - can I read
it?  Yes.  Do I want it in my inbox?  Heck no.  Just because you can do
something doesn't mean you should.


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