Mac Mail is SO BROKEN how can anyone stand it?

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by propower, Jun 13, 2012.

  1. propower macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2010

    For just doing email with your buddies..... its fine

    But, I am a musician and I do a monthly mailer about gigs and mail is atrocious!!!!!!! Go ahead, format your mail and add some hyperlinks. I guarantee the fonts it sends are not what you see (especially true for windows users)...... Now go ahead copy paste some text from webpages etc... now all hell breaks loose, formatting won't stay put, simply doing backspaces ends up with text jumping over text, windows users will receive a jumble of fonts in varying sizes and you can't even change the hyperlinks to be the same color.....

    Horrible, awful, almost unusable, I feel like ripping my hair out every month. Thunderbird almost works right but when you add contacts it doesn't go the Mac address book, same with Outlook, Postbox almost works but all the format errors are still there.......

    And best of all...... you get no visual clue it is happening.......

    So ........ Mac Mail........ Years behind Outlook and ready to make YOU look like a 3rd grader!

    Rant over --- flame suit on ---- long live the empire!
  2. andylaiphoto macrumors member

    Jan 17, 2007
    I've never had a problem with mail. I've been using Sparrow the past couple days.
  3. chrono1081 macrumors 604


    Jan 26, 2008
    Isla Nublar
    I never have a single problem with Apple Mail, including formatting...

    That being said Outlook issues account for 90.23% of our first tier help desks tickets at work and 32.6% of our tier two help desks tickets so I personally hate Outlook. If you want to see broken watch Outlook disable random parts of Microsoft Office for no reason.

    EDIT: Try giving Thunderbird a whirl. I haven't used it in years but it used to be pretty good.
  4. Shrink macrumors G3


    Feb 26, 2011
    New England, USA
    I'll express an opinion with absolutely nothing empirical or factual to back it up
    (which, essentially, makes it useless crap :p)...I would suggest that the vast majority of Mac Mail users find it more than adequate.

    I don't question your experience that Mac Mail sucks for heavy duty users, but your headline " can ANYONE use it?" is, IMO, an gross overstatement. As mentioned, perhaps heavy duty users find it inadequate, but to ask how can ANYONE use it is over the top. :D
  5. Cheffy Dave macrumors 68030

    Cheffy Dave

    Feb 5, 2007
    Sunny Florida, on the Gulf Coast in Homosassa Fl
    Gave up on Mail,

    Been using Sparrow for a year, looking forward to its release for the iPad:cool:
  6. orbital~debris macrumors 6502a


    Mar 3, 2004
    England, UK, Europe
    Hi propower,

    You could try this:

    start with a blank email (or template), and type some text so it's using the default font/the template's default font.

    then, with the text you want to bring in: copy it, and then choose 'Paste and Match Style' from the Edit menu in Mail.

    This should hopefully help you a bit with the formatting issues…
  7. propower thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2010
    Nope.... paste and match style doesn't fix it.........

    Just had to send another one out today. At least the fonts were the same size..... but no way to make them all the same font....... no matter how many times I select all and choose a font....... no help

    Looks perfect on Macs, but windows is another story.

    I admit and said so up front, for most casual use..... no problem. For any communication to large groups where your image is important....... good luck!

    Why not just a proper HTML client. Mai can read HTML just fine....... why not use it to compose.... or at least show hidden characters..........

    I better get Mail Chimp working before next months mailer !!!!
  8. jsf8x macrumors 6502


    Feb 28, 2010
    Been using Sparrow for the past 2 or 3 months. Absolutely fabulous app. Definitely worth a try..
  9. joshualander macrumors newbie

    Jul 26, 2006
    Of Pigs and Horses

    Apple Mail isn't a mass mailing or email marketing app; it's for day-to-day communication at home and the office. You hit the nail on the head with MailChimp -- I use it and love it. If you can't get it up and working, give them a call or shoot them an email -- they seem like swell people.

    Yes, this issue applies to all WYSIWYG software. If you don't use one of a very few web-safe fonts (like, Arial, Times New Roman, Courier, Trebuchet MS, etc.) then different mail clients and browsers will deprecate your font and use a system-standard equivalent instead. For the sake of Windows and Linux users, you should really be using proper HTML and CSS, which allows you to substitute better looking "default" fonts in case your readers don't have the fonts you've used on hand.

    If none of this makes any sense to you, that's another check in the "pro" column for MailChimp.

    The format errors have nothing to do with the software you're using, and everything to do with the software -they're- using. OS X offers dozens of awesome, built-in font options across the whole operating system, but many of them are not web safe. When you bring up the font panel in Mail, you'll see a collection of fonts called "Web Safe" -- which means exactly what you might have guessed. If you stick to that collection, your rich emails will look fairly consistent for your recipients.

    Alas, long-time Mac users have never 'enjoyed' the 'benefits' of Clippy, Microsoft's under-medicated, anthropomorphic paper clip whose job consists solely of taking wild guesses at what you might be starting to write.

    I understand that you're frustrated. Thing is, you're bringing a prized pig to the horse track and getting pissed at him when he doesn't win the race. Mac Mail is pretty excellent — but it isn't supposed to do what you're trying to do with it.

    That said, MailChimp isn't for the beginner if you're obsessive about design. If you want pixel-perfect control over the appearance of your newsletter, create one using the templates in Pages, then export it as a PDF and attach to an email. You can add hyperlinks, email links, photos, and -- best of all -- whatsoever fonts your heart desires.

    To infinity and beyond? Bed, Bath and Beyond? I always get those two mixed up.
  10. skidmaark macrumors newbie

    Jul 27, 2011
    Get a Clue

    You're doing it wrong.

    Copying and pasting from web pages isn't "text", it's formatted HTML, CSS, PHP, etc. You really don't know what is underneath and shouldn't expect to look like it did on the web in an email message.

    Mail is not an HTML editor and was never meant to be, and every mail client, Mail, Outlook, AOL, Thunderbird, etc. will display randomly formatted, pasted-in junk differently.

    Lastly, that you have provided absolutely no examples shows a complete lack of contextual basis for any of us to really help you and your massive overuse of long strings of periods (which I can only assume are supposed to be ellipses) shows that you are barely able to manage the written English language and sentence structure leading me to conclude that a newsletter is one of the last things you should be attempting.

    My advice, stick to music, or if you must continue to "do" a newsletter, use the right tool for the job, learn English and quit blaming the software for your lack of knowledge.
  11. propower thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2010
    Josh: I only quoted a little but you pretty much hit the "mail" on the head!

    Thanks for all the other comments as well. Yes, I can speak and write proper english :). I have actually hit this wall a few times with mail. When I wrote my post I intended it to be a little tongue in cheek -- but pointed. I thought of trying to embed an example but elected not to. The problems I state are real and in many ways as Josh pointed out, they are from using the wrong tool.

    Best to all - be nice - try not to take it too seriously :)
  12. CylonGlitch macrumors 68030


    Jul 7, 2009
    Sounds more like you're choosing a font that is not installed in windows by default. The mac comes with many different fonts than those on windows, but when windows gets an email using that font, it has to guess on one that is similar. Stick to the standard fonts that are the same on both Windows and Mac and you'll be OK.
  13. palmharbor macrumors 6502

    Jul 31, 2007
    Apple mail built by WIN 95 team ?

    Let me list the flaws in Lion/Apple Mail>
    1) No longer able to bounce Junk Mail
    2) Icons are as smaller than a crayon point
    3) Icons from Color to B & W
    4) new email is not the default...U have to use the narrow scroll to scroll up to new emails.
    5)Harder to drag and drop photos into email
    6) Must use cmd and N to begin new email
    It needs to be completely done over again but Apple is more focused on sending photos and text to facebook as they feel their primary customers are teens. They have not improved copy and paste since OS 8! But they don't care.
  14. propower thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2010
    OK.... new day! Let's see if we can solve something!

    I never saw the WebSafe section of fonts. I now chose Verdana 12 for everything in preferences.

    Let's try to solve one of my problems

    Create message in MacMail message with four paragraphs. Use the indent key on paragraph number two. Send to an MS hotmail address and read in outlook.
    1) Font comes out Times New Roman (though Verdana is clearly supported)
    2) The indent is gone

  15. tdhurst macrumors 601


    Dec 27, 2003
    Phoenix, AZ
    So use an email marketing program...

    So why not use MailChimp, Constant Contact or anything designed to send mass emails?
  16. propower thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2010
    I am certainly checking out mail chimp (no simple job there).....

    In reality this "mass mailing" of mine is like a few hundred people. If I could do some simple formatting with links and have it reliable I would be more than happy.........

  17. tdhurst macrumors 601


    Dec 27, 2003
    Phoenix, AZ

    A few hundred people is mass email.

    What's complicated about MailChimp?
  18. JAT macrumors 603

    Dec 31, 2001
    Mpls, MN
    This is hardly an Apple Mail problem only. Email is far from a "standard", despite claims made to the contrary. I have people set up with Outlook, but sending in some plain-text fashion, so all formatting is killed by the time it gets to me, also Outlook. It's all over the place.

    The best recommendation anyone has made is to create your newsletter how you want and publish it to PDF. Email that file.
  19. propower thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2010
    I agree with your recommendation (or mail chimp)..... But,
    Why does the program have all these formatting options and buttons if you can't rely on any of it to actually get to recipients? Why make it look perfect for the user with no clue that they stand little chance of it getting to the recipients that way. I used this program for these kinds of duties for quite a while before I even saw a response from a windows user that showed me what they received.

    I get you, but in all fairness, why have a feature set that is not reliable for delivery to let's say 85% of the world (i.e. Windows users). I would rather that I only have options that work.

    Also-- I receive tons of stuff from Outlook users that is formatted brilliantly (remember I live in Redmond, WA). Even Outlook for Mac does a better job but since it doesn't integrate with Mac Address book it is no good for me in my phone/pad/cloud world. Not to mention all the copy paste from office apps to Outlook actually works where as doing the same from pages/numbers to mail is primitive at best!
  20. JAT macrumors 603

    Dec 31, 2001
    Mpls, MN
    Part of the problem is probably on their computers. If settings aren't correct, or they don't have fonts installed to match...they get a mess. Most of the email that does seem to work across boundaries for everyone is actually web-based.

    But I believe you are correct, Mail probably isn't playing well with others. Microsoft seldom does, either. It's just that, speaking of computers, they have a big numbers-of-users advantage, anyway. I use Mail now, but barely, just as a local archiver for my main Gmail account. I actually send most emails from iOS Mail. When I did more emailing from home, I used other mail programs than whatever Apple offered at the time. It just doesn't seem like a mail program has ever been high on Apple's priority list. Your title says "how can anyone stand it?"...I don't think all that many do.
  21. al2o3cr macrumors regular

    Oct 14, 2009
    Getting HTML mail to work properly in Outlook's lobotomized viewer is terribly difficult for people who are working with the HTML source directly; expecting a WYSIWYG editor to manage it is ridiculous.
  22. LaWally macrumors 6502a

    Feb 24, 2012
    Your experience is one very good reason why it is always advisable to test what you are doing before going live, even with something as innocuous as a monthly mailer. You can work out the kinks by emailing yourself or a "victim" friend. Once the results are satisfactory, then you can do the mass mailings.

    Just a thought from someone who has made his own share of assumptions about expected software behavior ... and been burned.
  23. entropyfl macrumors regular

    Oct 12, 2009
    I completely agree. I find Mac Mail the worst experience of the mac.

    Yes its fine for people emailing friends and family but is not suitable for the business environment.

    Formatting is big headache and it seems to be worse in Lion. I also find attachments and pain as they seem to always be inline i.e imbedded in the email for outlook users.

    Outlook/windows is high percentage for offices so Mac mail should adapt to them not the other way round.

    Outlook in my opinion works fantastic and I don't have any issues with that.
  24. takeshi74 macrumors 601

    Feb 9, 2011
    Any time you find it's you versus the majority then you might want, at least briefly, stand back and reassess your perspective. In this case, it's because they're not using the wrong tool for what they're trying to do.
  25. propower thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jul 23, 2010
    I love the double negative :)! And I totally agree with you. Mac mail is a casual usage winner.

    But all the nice apparent formatting options in the program only work right for other mac mail users! But then we have notes. I love notes. I keep track of things on my phone/pad/work/home machines in sync with notes. Contacts and Calendar too! And no other Mac mail program does notes right.

    And to those who slag Outlook, I only wish it integrated correctly with the Mac Address book because copy paste and format for HTML emails actually works pretty good there! I just tried copying random HTML paragraphs from music webpages into Outlook, did some formatting and indenting, a few font changes and guess what, it all worked for both Mac and Windows recipients. So yes! A useable html mail client is totally doable. Just Mac mail is not it..... and somehow neither Postbox or Thuderbird really fix this either - I used each of these for the last two months. (didn't really spend any time with Sparrow).

    Oh well. My solution I think has to be Mail Chimp and Mac Mail for all the rest.

    So again I say, since the features implemented in mac mail (formatting and Fonts) only work for a very small set of people and in general are not what they seem, I wish they were not there at all!

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