My Final Quick Mail Update on WordPress Repository

Discover the latest version of Quick Mail.

WordPress suspended my account.

I posted a plugin review on Sunday, with a link to Bad Marriages. I was excited. My homepage scored 100 on a Google speed test, using the plugin.

I reconsidered it yesterday, and logged into to edit the review. Alas, my account was “suspended.”. My profile is weird.

No notification from WordPress. Just a 12 year old account, suspended.

Not My First Plugin Annoyance

My first WordPress plugin respository annoyance was in May 2019.

I always test Quick Mail with nightly releases. For example, a recent nightly release was 5.4-alpha-46671.

In my opinion, this means Quick Mail was tested with WordPress 5.4

Someone from WordPress penalized me for using the nightly version.

Click on the screenshot, for a larger image.

My plugin was updated “2 months ago,” but not with the “latest 3 major releases of WordPress.”

I thought it would be easier to remove the plugin, and forget about it.

But I changed my mind. Until today.

Gutenberg is the Biggest WordPress Annoyance

Frankly, I was also annoyed that two WordPress 5.3 updates broke sites.

Particularly, one plugin that I need to block the Gutenberg editor.

WordPress development stopped being fun since they added Gutenberg to WP 5.0.

WordPress wastes zillions of development hours on this counterproductive editor, that creates new problems.

The End of Quick Mail?

I finished Quick Mail 3.5.6, so I released it.

Quick Mail 3.5.6 is the 42nd update. I improved five features.

There are no features to add, and no bugs.

I always wanted to put all the configuration options into one variable. But it’s lots of work.

I created the Quick Mail WordPress plugin in 2014. I wanted to send an email with an attachment from the WordPress dashboard, with a document preview as an attachment.

42 updates added many features. The WP-CLI command is my favorite feature. I use it all the time.

What Is a Valid Email Address?

I mentioned in the previous update, that it is nearly impossible to validate every email address.

However, I added email validation to Quick Mail 3.4.3 in 2018.

Briefly, most domains have a mail exchanger domain record, commonly known as an MX record. This MX domain record tells senders how to send email to a domain.

Quick Mail tries to validate email addresses with checkdnsrr to learn if the recipient’s domain had an MX Record.

If email address validation is enabled, and a user tries to send email to a domain without an MX record, Quick Mail displays an “Invalid Email Address” error.

Quick Mail’s email address validation is great for catching typos. It is not perfect at validating an email address domain.

For example: example (dot) com, cannot receive mail. However, Quick Mail considers it a valid domain, because it validates with checkdnserr.

When to Validate Email Addresses

WordPress users must register: they should have valid email addresses. WordPress added wp_new_user_notification in 2005.

Although it is possible to add a user to WordPress without an email address, most users confirm their email address, before using WordPress.

Previously, Quick Mail settings allowed users to set email validation “on” when selecting recipients from a WordPress user list.

Quick Mail 3.5.6 fixes this problem. Email sent to WordPress users is never validated. “Verify recipient email domains” cannot be enabled, unless “Do Not Show Users” is selected.

Please refer to a screenshot of settings, if you never used Quick Mail.

Better Forms / Data Entry

Quick Mail 3.5.6 makes it easier to enter information.

  1. I changed the width of text inputs on mobile devices. Previously, users had to scroll or guess, if they forgot what they entered. Finally, I detect devices with the WordPress wp_is_mobile function. This function does not distinguish between phones and tablets.
  2. WordPress added CSS that limited the size of the CC selection list to one line. Quick Mail 3.5.6 adds specific CSS to fix this problem.
  3. Selecting Display Commenters disables user selection. You can only use one at a time. Select one or the other.

Quick Mail 3.5.6 Forms Have No Placeholders

HTML 5 added placeholders to form input fields.

A placeholder is the opaque text with a “hint” in a data entry field show shown above.

I removed HTML form placeholder values from Quick Mail 3.5.6.

Why Are HTML Placeholders Harmful?

First of all, placeholders are only helpful on poorly designed forms. Well designed forms should include an HTML label, with a description of the request. Because placeholders vanish when a user clicks on them, or presses a key.

Additionally, placeholders are cute, but do not add value. I also think the JAWS Screen Reader, the most popular screen reader for vision impaired users, ignores placeholders.

Similarly, vision impaired users might not see placeholders, because they are generally opaque.

Another reason came from an informative video by the Web usability experts at The Neilsen / Norman Group.

Jakob Neilsen wrote hundreds of articles about Web usability. He wants to make Web pages easier for everyone to use.

Mr. Neilsen’s research and articles helped me learn how to write Web pages. His articles also taught me how people interact with Web pages.

Placeholders in Form Fields Are Harmful

Katie Sherwin wrote Placeholders in Form Fields Are Harmful with additional reasons to avoid placeholders.

TL;DR Watch a 3 minute video by Ms. Sherwin, with reasons to avoid using placeholders.

Get Quick Mail 3.5.6 from Github

Download Quick Mail 3.5.6 from Github.

I tested Quick Mail 3.5.6 with WordPress 5.3.

Quick Mail is also tested with nightly releases during development, including multisite.

I Hope Quick Mail Improves Your WordPress Experience

I wrote hundreds of administrative plugins for jobs, but Quick Mail is my first public plugin. Writing Quick Mail taught me lots about WordPress.

Thanks to all of the Quick Mail translators.

Please refer to my previous articles on Quick Mail for additional information.

Quick Mail includes “Help” for setup and usage. If you need additional help with Quick Mail 3.5.6, please create a new issue on Github.

Final Reminder

Again, Quick Mail will not be updated on the WordPress plugin repository. It will be removed from WP soon. This will mainly affect users who rely on translations.

However, I cannot upload Quick Mail 3.5.6 to WordPress SVN for the translations team. Finally, I cannot answer Quick Mail questions on the WP Support Forum, since WordPress suspended my profile.

If a bug is reported on Github, I will fix it. Otherwise, this is my final release of Quick Mail.

Every WP User Needs Quick Mail 3.5.6

Quick Mail provides an essential service. Every WordPress user needs email. Quick Mail adds email to WordPress.

And Quick Mail works perfectly. It will be retired with a 5 star rating on WordPress.