Are apostrophes valid in an email address? ti at
Wed Feb 15 17:34:13 GMT 2006

> On 15 Feb 2006, at 15:09, Phil Pennock wrote:
> FWIW, the real (poorly-written) world appears to be nowhere near RFC-
> compliance [and won't accept email addresses containing apostrophes],
> especially on anything web-related. [...]


Moreover, if you read Tim Berners-Lee's URL specification[1][2]:

   1.5. URI Transcribability


   The goal of transcribability can be described by a simple scenario.
   Imagine two colleagues, Sam and Kim, sitting in a pub at an
   international conference and exchanging research ideas.  Sam asks Kim
   for a location to get more information, so Kim writes the URI for the
   research site on a napkin.  Upon returning home, Sam takes out the
   napkin and types the URI into a computer, which then retrieves the
   information to which Kim referred.

Suppose, instead, Kim gave her email address as

`novice vigilante'

That might be a legal email, but even if all the non-RFC-compliant email
programs in the world were fixed (by magic?), it would *still* be a pain
in the proverbial to, oh, write down by hand.

So it might be RFC-compliant, but it's awkward, unhelpful, and fights most
of the dubious mail software in the world. That's enough to make me
consider it harmful.



[2] Yes, I *know* we're discussing email addresses, not URLs.

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