RFC # 561                           Abhay Bhushan (AKB) MIT-DMCG
     NIC # 18516                          Ken Pogran (KP) MIT-MULTICS
                                        Ray Tomlinson (RST) BBN-TENEX
                                              Jim White (JEW) SRI-ARC
                                                       5 September 73


                    Standardizing Network Mail Headers




     One of the deficiences of the current FTP mail protocol is that
     it makes no provision for the explicit specification of such
     header information as author, title, and date.  Many systems
     send that information, but each in a different format.  One
     fairly serious result of this lack of standardization is that
     it's next to impossible for a system or user program to
     intelligently process incoming mail.

     Although the long-term solution to the problem is probably to
     add commands for specifying such information to the mail
     protocol command space (as suggested in RFC 524 -- 17140,), we
     hereby propose a more quickly implemented solution for the
     interim.

     We suggest that the text of network mail, whether transmitted
     over the FTP telnet connection (via the MAIL command) or over a
     separate data connection (with the MLFL command), be governed by
     the syntax below:

        Example:

           From: White at SRI-ARC
           Date: 24 JUL 1973 1527-PDT
           Subject: Multi-Site Journal Meeting Announcement
           NIC: 17996

           At 10 AM Wednesday 25-JULY there will be a meeting
           to discuss a Multi-Site Journal in the context of
           the Utility.  Y'all be here.

        Formal Syntax:

               ::= 
::= !
::= ::= ! ! ! 1 NWG/RFC# 561 AKB KP RST JEW 5-SEP-73 11:19 18516 Standardizing Network Mail Headers RFC 561 / NIC 18516 ::= FROM: AT ::= DATE: