Google+ Invades Gmail, Allows Users to Email Without Email Addresses
January 10, 2014 11:02 AM
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Google is integrating Google+ into Gmail so that users of the social network can email you, even if they're complete strangers that don't have your email address
Email usually feels like a private place on the Web (for the most part). It's not like Facebook, where anyone in the world can easily find you by name and try to contact you. In other words, you'd expect to find a message from an old acquaintance on Facebook, but not in your private email if you've never exchanged addresses -- until now.
According to the
, Google is integrating Google+ into Gmail so that users of the social network can email you, even if they're complete strangers that don't have your email address.
Gmail users will see a new setting called "Email via Google+" in the coming days, although Google said it wouldn’t be functional right away. When the feature is turned on, Google will email users to let them know it's active.
The feature doesn't reveal your email address to the other Google+ user that decided to contact you, and you also won't receive Google+ mail in your "Primary" inbox, but rather the "Social" tab.
If you're not interested in taking part, users can opt out by selecting the "no one" option for the feature's settings.
Google is clearly determined to make Google+ a service people actually use, as the social network has been pretty quiet since its
summer 2011 release
Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt made his 2014 predictions for
recently, and he said his biggest mistake was missing the train when it came to social networking, but added that that won't be the case in 2014.
"The biggest mistake that I made was not anticipating
the rise of the social networking
phenomenon," said Schmidt. "Not a mistake we’re going to make again. I guess in our defense we were busy working on many other things, but we should have been in that area and I take responsibility for that."
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1/10/2014 6:16:57 PM
I joined Gmail about as soon as it was available, public email offerings were slim at the time. Hotmail totally irked me one time too many, Yahoo! was not a sure candidate for longevity, so Gmail it was. I don't 'do' social networking, I value my privacy too much. I just needed an email account that wasn't tied to anything, a few ads were a small price to pay.
Seperatly, I have a you tube account. There are a few tutorial type things to do with animation that I subscribe to...
Along came this G+ nonsense. I don't want it, didn't ask for it, and I wish that Google would respect my intellect by offering me the chance to opt into this kind of thing after explaining to me what it was and why I should want it, rather than me waking up one day and finding out that I am a 'member' of this little 'club' that I did not know about, did not want to be involved in and which took me a not inconsiderable amount of time to make myself a non-involved participant of.
Eric, are you listening? Let me tell you the one about the horse and the water trough... Then let me tell you that this horse prefers to choose the trough from which he drinks, thank you.
All the above being said, once I opted out of whatever I did not want to be part of, I seem to have stayed 'opted out'. After a few nags to sign in with my google+ credentials, or 'real name' foolishnesses, I don't get many nags anymore.
Gmail is still a pretty reliable email service, and the ads I see aren't too high a price (still) to pay for a pretty good free email account.
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