Gmail "Mute" Function Gets Smarter

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So Gmail has a mute function—THIS IS NOT NEWS! What’s newsworthy is that there’s a new experimental Gmail Labs feature called Smart Mute that makes the mute function actually work well.

The standard mute function prevents message threads that you designate as mute-worthy from reappearing in your inbox each time some buffoon hits Reply All and types something poignant like “Sounds fun!” or “So cute!” or “Thanks!” and sends it out to everyone involved.

The problem is that if your actual e-mail address is on a particular string of e-mail messages, new messages will still show up in your inbox. So the mute feature really only works well for messages sent to a list or group where nobody’s personal e-mail address is revealed. (More on Techland: How to Free Up Space in Gmail)

Now with Smart Mute, you can keep muted messages out of your inbox entirely even if your address is included with the rest of the recipients. However, if someone involved in the conversation string replies to you directly—taking everyone else out of the “To:” field in order to comment about how boring the conversation’s gotten, for instance—you’ll get that message in your inbox.

Smart Mute can be enabled under the “Labs” section in Gmail’s settings.

Google has also added easier ways to unmute muted messages. You can now unmute a selected message under the “More Actions” menu or within the message itself by clicking on the little X next to the “Muted” label.

More on Techland:

New ‘Priority Inbox’ Feature Sorts Important Gmail Messages

Two Minute Video: 10 Simple Gmail Tricks

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