HTML Email: The Perils of Copy ‘n Paste (Part II)

In my last blog post, I played the part of the copy and paste doomsayer, warning all of the dangers inherent in the act of, well, copying and pasting. In particular, I discussed how, with that simple editing function, invisible metadata that has a rightful place in the source document can find its way into the HTML describing your email communications, (where it has no right to be in whatsoever) producing junk code.

HTML Email: The Perils of Copy ‘n Paste (Part I)

While the title may sound like some sort of Hardy Boys mystery (albeit a genre-confused tale involving electronic mail and word processing), it’s really only the preface for a more mundane happening involving two other lesser-known but widely-used siblings: Control-C and Control-V.

One Size Fits All is A Thing of The Past

One Size Fits All is A Thing of The Past

Now that a significant number of people read their email on devices other than a computer (be they smartphones, tablets, smartwatches and the like), you’ve got to wonder if the email you’re sending to them is optimized for their particular viewing experience. And we’re not talking about the email content here but its actual layout and presentation. Will the gorgeous 800 pixel wide email you just made look just as gorgeous on an iPhone when it’s proportionately shrunken down to a width of 250 pixels so that it can fit on so teeny tiny a screen? Will the design scale (and rescale itself) effectively when viewed on an Android tablet when you switch it back and forth between landscape and portrait views? Will your One Size Fits All design successfully do its job and actually fit to accommodate all sizes? Probably not.

Enter: Responsive Design.

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HTML Email: The Perils of Copy ‘n Paste (Part II)

The Perils of Copy and Paste

In my last blog post, I played the part of the copy and paste doomsayer, warning all of the dangers inherent in the act of, well, copying and pasting. In particular, I discussed how, with that simple editing function, invisible metadata that has a rightful place in the source document can find its way into the HTML describing your email communications, (where it has no right to be in whatsoever) producing junk code.

Not to be a hater but here’s another reason to be mindful when indiscriminately copying and pasting into your code: junk characters.

2

HTML Email: The Perils of Copy ‘n Paste (Part I)

The Perils of Copy and Paste

While the title may sound like some sort of Hardy Boys mystery (albeit a genre-confused tale involving electronic mail and word processing), it’s really only the preface for a more mundane happening involving two other lesser-known but widely-used siblings: Control-C and Control-V.

These days, copying and pasting text from one document to another is a pretty standard practice. Come on, admit it – you do it. I do it. Anyone who knows how to type does it. There’s no shame here. It’s one of the greatest editing shortcuts that technology has afforded us since the advent of sliced bread*. And given that content is written in and comes at us in a variety of formats, it’s no wonder that we copy ‘n paste with abandon. But take heed, gentle reader, for I’m about to tell you that there lies some modicum of danger in this very act.