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(n.) Usually elaborately designed emails with webpage-like functionality, written with HTML (the language of the World Wide Web) rather than standard plaintext or basic formatted text, frequently used in corporate newsletters for a 'professional' appearance. Because email clients (especially Gmail) completely ignore W3C standards, these emails require a horrific mutilation of HTML and CSS, imposing coding atrocities such as nested <table> elements, an extremely limited number of supported image formats, inline CSS, discarded doctypes, character encoding declarations, and even the <head> element, deprecated HTML attributes for formatting, and complex workarounds for basic styling such as background images. Not only does the horrible markup appear like it is from 1996, it is rendered differently in different clients, making an email in Yahoo Mail look different from an email in Hotmail. Good HTML email is almost impossible for all but the best of webpage designers, and prevents use by disabled people who rely on screen reader software. Although HTML emails can look amazing if designed carefully, the current HTML email rendering is the most terrifying tragedy to ever disgrace the World Wide Web since Internet Explorer 6 (the anti-Christ of web browsers).
Also spelled as HTML e-mail.
(cf. HTML, e-mail)
normal person: Damn, this HTML email has some chill graphics, I wish I could make my emails look like this. I love HTML emails!

webpage coder: Dafuq? Composing an HTML email is impossible! None of the CSS positioning works, and I can't even add a background image! I hate creating HTML emails! Good thing I'm getting paid mad skrilla to design this...

coder from 1996 (poor bastard): Whatevs, this is just like coding a normal HTML webpage from 1996 in MS-DOS edlin...
by chillr October 11, 2013
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