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Some, not all,  HTML emails being converted to Plain Text in Outlook 2003

Posted on 2011-03-04
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Last Modified: 2013-02-13
Some HTML formatted emails, but not all, are coming into Outlook as Plain Text.  I say 'not all' to make the distinction that this is not the general setting that affects all incoming emails.

This problem is with the same sender every time.  This sender CC's other users in the same office with Outlook, but they are not having this problem.

I've been reading over many, many messages in EE, but the answers are either to check the general setting that affects all emails, or there is something about AVG's pop3 scanning that causes it.  This system does not use AVG.

When I open this email, which is not a forwarded email created by a 3rd party, I cannot change the formatting from Plain Text to HTML.  Those options are grayed out.

What is causing this?  How do I fix it?

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Question by:trading10
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Expert Comment

by:David Lee
ID: 35049519
Hi, trading10.

How do you know the messages were sent in HTML format if they are arriving in plain-text format?  Is that based on the other recipients receiving the same message in HTML format?  

Do all messages from this one sender arrive in plain-text or do some arrive in HTML?
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Author Comment

by:trading10
ID: 35053173
The sender has a distribution list that these emails go out to.  So,yes, all other recipients in the office are able to view her emails in HTML format.

Every email from her appears as plain text in my customer's Outlook.
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Expert Comment

by:David Lee
ID: 35055029
Are there any rules, macros, or add-ins on the customer's computer that could be responsible for this behavior?
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Author Comment

by:trading10
ID: 35067830
No rules, macros or add-ons that I am aware of.
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Expert Comment

by:David Lee
ID: 35067975
Is the sender using Outlook?  If so, then they may have set it to always send to you in plain text format.
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Author Comment

by:trading10
ID: 35070956
Where is that setting in Outlook?  

Could it be that the sender's Outlook has been set to send emails composed as HTML out as plain text?
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Accepted Solution

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David Lee earned 500 total points
ID: 35071225
Open a contact then double-click the email address.  A dialog-box title "E-mail Properties" should appear.  Just above the buttons at the bottom of the dialog is a field labeled "Internet format".  It's a pull-down box that is normally set to "Let Outlook decide the best sending format".   If you pull it down you'll see that there is also an option to send in plain text only.  

If the sender's Outlook was configured to send all messages in plain text, then everyone would see them in plain-text instead of just the one person.
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Assisted Solution

by:trading10
trading10 earned 0 total points
ID: 35106462
The properties in the receiver's Outlook appear as "let Outlook decide best method of sending".

However, I learned that the sender is able to send individual emails to the receiver in HTML format.  It is only when the sender uses her distribution list to send out mass emails in HTML format that it is received in plain text format.

I suggested that the sender check the properties of the receiver's email address within the distribution list to see if it is set to 'send in plain text format'.

Does anyone here agree with that assessment?  Or is there something else that might be causing this?
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