Why Is My Yahoo Email Page Now in Small Print?

by Fred Decker

Major email providers go to great lengths to make their programs as flexible as possible. That means providing many ways for you to customize their handling of your mail, and many ways to view your messages. This includes altering the font size of your text and spacing of messages in your inbox. These settings might occasionally be affected by software problems, resulting in smaller-than-expected print. You can return the print to a normal or larger size with settings in Yahoo or your Web browser.

Font Size

Putting things back the way they were requires only a few minor tweaks in your Yahoo Mail settings. Log back in to your Yahoo account, and mouse over the menu icon -- the one that looks like a gear wheel. Choose "Mail Options" from the menu that pops up to get to the General Options page. At the bottom of that screen you'll see an Advanced Options section. Click the pull-down "Font Size" menu and select a larger size, such as "Medium," "Large" for "Extra-Large."

Font Selection

You can also change the font itself to something more readable, if you wish. Unlike font size, font readability is highly subjective. Most fonts can be broadly described as serif or sans serif in design. Serif fonts, like the widely-used Times Roman, have decorative horizontal elements at the top and bottom of the letters. This gives the text an improved flow and can be more comfortable to read in long documents. Sans serif typefaces lack these design elements, and their clean shapes are well-suited for titles, headlines and short messages. Yahoo provides a preview below the menu, so you can try them all and pick a favorite.

Message Spacing

After you've altered the font size and type settings, click "Save" and return to your inbox. If you find that the messages are crowded together more closely than you'd like, click the "Actions" menu just above your messages. Three settings on this menu control the spacing of your messages. On the Slim setting, messages are displayed densely with little space between. The Regular setting provides a modest amount of white space between messages, and the Relaxed setting spreads the messages even farther apart.

Other Settings

There are a number of other tweaks that can affect your Mail page's readability. For instance, your Yahoo Inbox shows only 25 messages at a time by default. You can increase this to as many as 200 messages per page. You can also choose to have a preview pane at the bottom of your screen, as Outlook and Thunderbird do. If your eyes are tired and you want to make the print larger without changing your settings, you can also hold down the "Ctrl" key on your keyboard and scroll with your mouse wheel or press "+" to zoom in on the page.

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About the Author

Fred Decker is a trained chef and certified food-safety trainer. Decker wrote for the Saint John, New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal, and has been published in Canada's Hospitality and Foodservice magazine. He's held positions selling computers, insurance and mutual funds, and was educated at Memorial University of Newfoundland and the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology.

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