Google+ Invades Gmail, Allows Users to Email Without Email Addresses
January 10, 2014 11:02 AM
comment(s) - last by
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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RE: DT Strikes Again
1/10/2014 11:37:04 PM
I'm not really sure how Google managed to link my Youtube account with (one of my) Gmail account.
I'm going to guess by IP address. I think that's how it happened with me. Google tried to set my separate email accounts up on the same login screen - I opted out, brought up an old bookmark from one of my emails. Now I select the account I want from LastPass pull-down menu.
Google still likely knows they're all me. I don't care - so long as they don't publicly join them together in any way.
As for the email thing in the article, a few hours ago I got the notice, made a few settings to my liking, and don't expect it to be a problem. If it becomes a problem for me, then I'll re-evaluate and go from there.
While I don't like the way Google is going about this, I don't see it as nefarious, directly anyway; it's simply that for them it's logical in light of how and what they do. Apart from dealing with the occasional hassle of carefully managing accounts and settings, I don't care in relation to the original bargain I made with Google for anonymous ad-targeting in exchange for the convenience of using Gmail. This is not to say I'm happy with those hassles, tho.
RE: DT Strikes Again
1/12/2014 6:07:36 PM
Must be more than IP - does the browser leak hostname info or something? Otherwise if it was just IP you'd have it trying to link with your partners account etc.
RE: DT Strikes Again
1/13/2014 12:56:02 PM
Because Google's TOS revision allows them to aggregate your data in ways that are more "useful" to you. Or is it more useful for them? You can decide that for yourself.
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