[Extra] draft-ietf-extra-imap4rev2-04: ALERT

Michael Slusarz <michael.slusarz@open-xchange.com> Wed, 03 April 2019 22:12 UTC

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Date: Wed, 3 Apr 2019 16:12:04 -0600 (MDT)
From: Michael Slusarz <michael.slusarz@open-xchange.com>
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Subject: [Extra] draft-ietf-extra-imap4rev2-04: ALERT
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Is "ALERT" useful anymore?  It's limited to ASCII output, which restricts which languages can even be represented in the output text.

It becomes more useful if LANGUAGE extension is implemented and used.  But how many clients use this extension?

The context where ALERT seems most useful is during authentication.  Things like "your password has expired", "your account has been compromised", "Your email plan has expired, please renew your contract", etc.

Gmail has WEBALERT to facilitate this kind of user interaction by directing to a webpage, which is the standard way to facilitate this kind of more complex feedback.  Or maybe something like "[URLALERT <url>]", where URL can be any registered URL type and a client only needs to handle URL types it understands, would be more generic and future-proof.

Not sure if this is something to address in rev2, or something that would be better served in a future extension.