This week's book giveaway is in the OCAJP 8 forum. We're giving away four copies of OCA Java SE 8 Programmer I Study Guide and have Edward Finegan & Robert Liguori on-line! See this thread for details.
The reason you do not get any response when you use <html:text is because ><html:text does NOT contain any attribute called format. To display a date in html:text you have to set the correct date string in the request/form and then display it correspondingly.
The display:column issue needs to be checked. Can you check the server logs when the formatting does not work.>