I'm subscribed to a newsletter from Realistic Religious Zionism. In the last e-mail I got, there was a strikethrough styling in the middle of the text. At first, I thought it is some kind of a correction, but then I noticed it continued to the end of the e-mail, so I realized this was some sort of a bug.
Out of curiosity, I viewed the HTML mail source, but this was cluttered with many formatted
<span>s, so I couldn't find anything there. In particular, I didn't find the text "strike" in the text.
I saved it as an HTML file and opened it in Firefox, and the problem still existed, so I tried checking it with Firebug and saw that when the problem started, an
<s> element was defined with a
pan attribute. I tried to look for an "<s " in the source to find out where it is defined, but couldn't find it either.
So, having no other choice, I looked for the location of the problem in the source. This was a bit problematic since it was a mixture of an English markup and a Hebrew text. When I nailed it down, I realized what the problem is. It appears that the mail text is cut every 1048 characters, and a new line is entered. Normally, this is not a problem, since white-spaces don't count in HTML. But when it occurs in the middle of a
<span> tag definition, it renders an
<s> tag with a
pan attribute. I didn't know that, but
<s> HTML tag can be used as the
<strike> tag to specify stricken-through text (BTW, both tags are deprecated by the HTML standard and the CSS alternative is encouraged). Since the
<span> tag definition was truncated with a new-line after the
"<s", it was considered as the definition of an
<s> tag, which wasn't really closed, so it lasted till the end of the e-mail.
This problem of cutting HTML in the middle is not mentioned in the list of problems with HTML e-mails. I guess the simplest solution is just to make every HTML markup in a new line. This makes the e-mail a bit longer, but avoids such problems. However, I guess they are using some rich text editor that generates this HTML e-mail, so I don't really know what can be done with that tool.