This is One Area Where it Makes Sense to Just Go Along
Since this is so, and since these questions hardly warrant any evangelism under normal conditions, it is usually beneficial to suit the recipient's style when you can. In Gmail, you can easily send messages either using rich HTML formatting or using just plain text.
If you know a recipient prefers plain text emails, avoid formatting.
Send a Message in Plain Text from Gmail
To compose and send an email in pure plain text in Gmail:
- Click COMPOSE in your Gmail's left navigation bar.
- Click the More options downward pointing triangle in the email composition pop-up.
- Make sure Plain text mode is checked.
- If Plain text mode does not have a checkmark before it in the menu, click it. (Otherwise, click anywhere in the email's body text to close the More options menu.)
To write and send a plain text email using Gmail's "old compose":
- Select COMPOSE from the left navigation bar.
- With keyboard shortcuts enabled, you can also press c.
- If you can see a formatting bar, click « Plain text.
- You can even use the « Plain text link after you have started typing your message. All text will be preserved.
- If you have already applied formatting to your message, clicking OK will strip it and convert the message to plain text. Links will be removed, too, so copy and paste them in plain form before switching to plain text.
(Updated May 2013)