WordPress: Posting by email from Thunderbird

I have been experimenting with WordPress’s post by email feature. It’s pretty neat: on WordPress.com, you generate a special email address, and then just email your post to that address. You can add shortcodes to set tags, as well as mark the status as ‘draft’ or ‘private’ if you are not ready to share it with the world at large. If you use an HTML-capable mail client, you can format your post; this is convenient, because it means that you basically gain access to a free, reasonably high-quality visual HTML editor! There are some limitations regarding pictures: basically, either you have a single picture in your post, or, if you have more than one, they will appear as a gallery. I can live with that.

One issue I had to deal with is the way Thunderbird handles plain-text and HTML mail messages (I use Apple Mail on my Macbook Pro, and Thunderbird on my iMac and Samsung 7 Slate). I can’t seem to be able to tell Thunderbird that the special WordPress email address can receive HTML mail (yes, I know about the option in Address Book: setting it doesn’t solve the problem). As a result, Thunderbird by default sends messages in both formats (I think). Then, WordPress sees the text part of the messages, and uses that for the post. So, boldface becomes *boldface*, etc. Not good.

My low-tech solution was to go to Tools | Options (Mac: Thunderbird | Preferences), and in the Composition tab, select “Send Options” and then “Ask me what to do” in the pull-down menu under “Text format”. Now, when I try to send HTML email and the receipient is not seen by Thunderbird as being able to receive HTML, I get three options: send plain-text only, send both (the default), and send HTML only. I select HTML only, and all is well: WordPress now correctly sees my HTML message and posts it with the correct formatting.

One last thing: I actually prefer plain-text email, and indeed I have set up Thunderbird to send plain text by default. However, if I need to send a single HTML message, there’s an easy (if hidden) way to do so: press the Shift key while clicking on the Write button. I get the HTML editor, and am good to go.

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One response to “WordPress: Posting by email from Thunderbird

  1. I am wondering how to give formatted text within the plain-text format wit TB, so I can use italic words inside it. in other words, i want to use HTML format mail and insert some email-tags given by WP as plain-text format

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