Re: "Mailto" Command
Wed, 9 Apr 1997 11:26:48 -0400 (EDT)

Date: Wed, 9 Apr 1997 11:26:48 -0400 (EDT)
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Re: "Mailto" Command

>From: (Walter Ian Kaye)
>I agree about its poor usability, and that's why I could never understand
>some people ask their ISP for a "" CGI. My initial reaction was,
>"Huh?" :-)

Actually there are very good reasons for a script that sends the form 
submission via e-mail. The following things can be done by a script and 
can't be done by action=mailto. (1) The mailing address can be kept 
secret, so users can only send submissions to that address via the 
script. (2) The form entries can be validated by the script. (3) The 
script can generate a response page. (4) The script can also record 
submissions in some other way if desired, e.g., collecting statistics or 
saving submissions in an archive file. (5) The script will work in 
browsers that don't support action=mailto.

None of this is a reason for disabling action=mailto, although anyone who 
uses it has to realize it won't work everywhere. (One version of AOL's 
mac browser didn't even display a form as a form if the action did not 
specify an http: URL. (Rather annoying because it doesn't allow proper 
preview of a document on your hard disk with a relative link to the 
cgi.)) Of course the method attribute is irrelevant for action=mailto.

>From: (Paul Prescod)
> And what if you get a form in the mail that
> says: "fill this out and present it at any Burger King for a free
> whopper." Do you mail it back and hope that they will mail you your
> whopper?

So that's why they never send me my whoppers!

    --- Bruce Leban
    Akimbo Systems
    Publish on the web without learning HTML! (Really.)