New Labs Experiment for Gmail: Smart Mute
Article by George Norman
On 02 Dec 2010
For the second time today we have to report on the release of a new Labs experiment for Google’s email client Gmail. Earlier today we reported on the release of Recently Used Emoji, an experiment that keeps track of the ten most recent emoticons you’ve used, and saves them for easy access. This is an experiment that helps you more easily manage the hundreds of emoticons available in Gmail.

Now we switch our focus on a Gmail Labs experiment meant to help you manage threads that refuse to die. As you may already know, if you’ve lost interest in a thread, you can mute it. You can do so by selecting a conversation and clicking Mute in the More actions drop-down menu, or by using the M shortcut key, if you turned on keyboard shortcuts in Gmail. Once you muted a thread, new messages added to the conversation bypass your inbox.

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The thing is that if your address appears in the To or CC field, you will receive messages in your inbox even though you muted a thread. To avoid this nuisance you had to create a custom filter for a specific conversation and thus keep messages out of your inbox. For that reason Software Engineer Bruce DiBello came up with Smart Mute, a useful feature that will ensure messages from muted conversations will not end up in your inbox.

“If you enable 'Smart Mute' from the Labs tab in Gmail Settings, muted conversations will only appear in your inbox if a new message in the conversation is addressed to you and no one else, or a new email in the conversation adds you to the “To” or “Cc” line. Once you enable Smart Mute, mute behavior will change across all versions of Gmail: web, mobile, Android, etc. Try it out and let us know what you think,” commented Bruce DiBello.

If you would like to turn on Smart Mute, here is what you have to do (a simple 3-step process):
  1. Go to Gmail (click here), enter your login credentials and click Sign in. If you are already signed into your Google account, click this link and you can just skip step 2 in this tutorial.
  2. In the top right corner of the screen, right next to your username you should be able to see Settings; click it. Now locate Labs and click it as well.
  3. Scroll down until you find a Labs experiment called Smart Mute. Select Enable, then click Save Changes (there’s a Save Changes button at the top of the experiments list and at the bottom as well) and you’re done.




Tags: Google, Gmail, Gmail Labs, Emoticons, Recently Used Emoji, Smart Mute
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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