Spaceless in Gmail

Heads up if you produce email newsletters…there’s a new bug in Gmail that is stripping out paragraph margins in HTML email. This only started happening earlier this week.

A colleague and I both noticed that C3’s Feedburner email subscriptions were suddenly coming in with no spacing between paragraphs.

In Gmail:


In (and I assume other desktop email clients):


A quick look using Firebug reveals the source of the problem:


Use Firebug to disable that style property and the problem is gone.

Thank you to a post on the NTEN Discuss email list for pointing out a thread on the Google Gmail support forums about this.

Due to a glitch with some formatting in Convio, I always have to code our e-newsletters in such a way that also serves as a workaround for this Gmail bug. You’ll need to style each paragraph tag with margins that will overrule the misplaced margin above. For example:

<p style="margin-bottom: 10px;">Text goes here</p>

Yes, it adds bulk to your email which isn’t good, but it also makes sure that the message will be legible in most clients. Unfortunately, I can’t do anything about Feedburner email subscriptions, so I hope Google fixes this one quickly.


  1. Michael Madden says:

    It’s stunning to me that Google either doesn’t care, or is having such a hard time fixing such a big, yet totally simple, problem. And it is a big problem — the paragraph, arguably the most basic structural unit of text markup, doesn’t work properly! It’s a single stupid line in the style sheet! Unbelievable.

  2. Yes! I just had to go back through my finished newsletter and replace all the paragraph tags with BR tags (ugh!)

    mentioned in gmail forums:

Comments are closed.