Like suddenly realizing I was given a lift solely because my presence in the car allowed the driver to enter my estate or place of work.
This is wrong.
If you read their earnings release from yesterday, you will see this gem "Average cost-per-click, which includes clicks related to ads served on Google sites and the sites of our Network members, decreased approximately 6% over the second quarter of 2012 and decreased approximately 2% over the first quarter of 2013." If you aren't careful you might think that is a "good thing" Gee it cost them 6% less to get a click? No, that isn't the definition you should use  the price they got per click went down. So when you get less per click, well you make it up in volume (which they did with a 23% increase in paid clicks).
What that means in simple terms is that the business unit that makes about 10x the revenue of all other Google businesses combined, is showing weakness. And Google is responding as they must, by increasing the opportunity you have to click on ads, as the price per click is a market thing (there are others who are offering ad channels).
This is the fundamental around all of the changes Google is putting in place in their properties (keeping you on their SERP, making everything G+, wrapping your experience in IOS around their applications).
I don't think the changes you are seeing are "wrong", I think they are inevitable.
Either way, Gmail is going down with things like that. Internet is one space where people can choose not to have ads, and nobody likes ads.
I really don't see that, we still have a huge number of free application. Maybe google is having some issues (google reader and gmail) but you still have a huge number of alternatives that are still free.
I may as well be using AOL. Those stupid tabs, and retarded categories are bullshit. The exact kind of noisy, cluttered, shitty interface I'd expect from any other e-mail service.
Fuck them in the ear.
We often seem to look at an issue from the other's point of view and deem it wrong or okay based on that. Why? Why not look at these situations that affect us directly from our point of view? Sometimes all that matters is you. This is one of those times.
To do it: Hit the Plus sign at the edge of the tabs, and uncheck everything except Primary. You'll be displayed a message saying that you disabled the new tabs.
As for your rhetorical question about who cares, I'm guessing the folks who've seen Google stock go from $600 to $900 are wondering if its time to switch to something else. If you're anonymous opinion is common among their users then the answer to their question would be "yes, definitely."
As long as it stays in "promotions" tab, I could care less, as this is where they belong. If that's the case that's actually a smart move to introduce in-maillist ads without polluting the "real" inbox.
As soon as they flow out of that bucket, we're entering Twitter's dickbar levels of dorkiness.
This is the whole point of 'gamification.' Dropping a number back down to zero is a form of this.
It's not like they're spamming our other inboxes. It's just the promotions inbox.
The promotion tab is where you get promotional emails from services that you have OPTED IN to receive emails from.
So is it far game if the Viagra emails only appear in the promotion's tab?
Google is sending spam (unsolicited emails). That is all there is s to say about it.
Is that a joke?
This really makes a lot of sense. You have pretty overt ads displayed, and deletable, within a tab devoted to ads. It's pretty much the best scenario imaginable for an ad supported service.
Quit complaining, pay for it (Google Apps), or move on.
If Google lost 25% of its free userbase and converted only 10% of that 25% into Google Apps customers, and left the other 75% with advertising clicks it's a win situation for the business and shareholders.
Google is not immune to capitalism or business mantra unfortunately.
For reference, as an idealist and a bit of a Marxist, I'm not a fan of this but it's the way it is at the moment.
Now they're coming up with this massive price hike, putting us in a position to choose between accepting a higher price and spending a lot of time moving our data elsewhere. Many people don't even know how to move existing email to a different provider.
So this is definitely something we can legitimately complain about.
But! Without users Google won't have a business at all. So they should be careful with disruptive advertisement.
They replace the webclip ads when the "promotions" tab is enabled: http://googlesystem.blogspot.com/2013/06/ads-in-gmails-promo...
You would probably know, since it's hard to sell ads like that without telling people.
and yet you're surprised and upset when they use that free product to show you ads… please don't tell me you actually fell for that "Don't be evil" BS
Is it so hard for people to get that some people actually understand that what Google sells is personalized ads based on what they know about us, and actually consider it a fair trade for the services we receive in return? Not everyone is ignorant about this. We just don't care.
Get used to it: if you aren't paying for the service, you're not their client and they are not your provider. You're their product.
It's not pretty, but sadly this is how life tends to work :-).
The prices too are similar to Google apps, but I'm not sure I'm going to move all my stuff there (Google Docs at least needs a competitor).
I've yet to decide if I'm going full scale when I'm through my free trial.
I see anywhere from zero to two spams in my inbox per day. I just move them over to my learn spam folder.
I just checked, and I have 270 spam messages in my junk folder since July 1.
I use their https web interface at work, not bad, nothing special. I use thunderbird over imap at home.
So in exchange for about $10 or $20 per year (depends on your service level), and the occasional need to tell fastmail "this message is spam, remember that for similar messages," I get an excellent imap service that is not gmail and not google. I'm a customer, not a product, and I'm very happy.
EDIT: corrected how many junk I have. It's 270 since July 1. It's about 1000 since June 22. They delete junk after awhile. I just combed through the 1000 and moved 9 into the "this is not junk, remember that" folder.
It's a fair question though. Despite the "If you don't pay for it…" mantra that people like to spout off, situations like Sparrow and other paid services shutting down tend to worry me. And I know, it's odd, considering Gmail is free and Google as a tendency to shut things down (but I don't see them shutting down Gmail).
I guess the issue is that if I pay for it, I'm investing time and money into something I want to know will stick around. And because I'm a customer, I feel like I'm empowered to believe that. After all, if a company is charging me X amount, I think that charge should be related to keeping themselves in business. I hate the idea of a company that charges not being able to stay afloat because of their low prices. It's not even giving me a choice as a customer to pay more to ensure their service remains.
Basically, since they sold themselves to Opera, they're at Opera's mercy to keep running. If Opera shuttered their doors or if Opera felt like pulling a Google Reader, there goes my mail provider. I'm iffy on the future of Opera as a company, which means I'm iffy on the future of everything they own regardless of that product's history.
Then again, I don't really see the point of not using Fastmail as long as you can export your stuff.
so that's a non-starter then, for someone looking to escape the snooping that makes Gmail annoying.
That was a few years ago, based on Exchange 2007 and 2010 -- meaning using fibre channel SAN for storage, tape backups, F5, etc. If you implemented today with Exchange 2013, you'd probably be able to cut costs 30% or more. There are a ton of costs areas embedded in there.
If you're operating a simple (ie. no calendar, no hooks into other services) service with custom code, open source infrastructure, and no (or minimal) external licensing, you can absolutely offer a $5/year 100MB mailbox profitably. They are making higher margins on the enhanced plans as well.
So, any free alternatives to Google Apps for my domain?
Edit: The "family" package offers this: https://www.fastmail.fm/signup/family.html
Edit Again: I should have poked around more, it's included in the personal package too.
Since I asked it, someone posted this to HN:
Which seems to suggest that it does have keyboard shortcuts. Not sure if they are the same as Gmails, but it's encouraging.
And, decided to actually just do a search, because, well yeah. I should. I discovered this:
Which from my initial review, seems to cover the shortcuts I routinely use!
Hopefully this helps others.
Changes like these give growth to new/alternative businesses.
Backups are only useful if you are able to restore from them.
I totally dig this perspective. From now on, my opinion is that Google makes this changes to promote entrepreneurship. Love it.
And related post.
They build out factories (datacenters, networks, etc) based on a projection of long-term growth. Once you start missing those growth targets, it's like compounded interest... the impact of a small miss in year 1 has a big impact on the year 5 bottom line.
They have a few issues IMO:
- The market is saturated... how many more tiny classified ads can you sell?
- The "less sophisticated" users who click on ads use Bing -- the Windows default.
- There are real competitors out there... Bing, Facebook, etc.
- They piss off their hardcore users too much. Google+: enough said.
I dont like it, and I'm not really a gmail user (I have an account as a sort of throw away),but this does seem better than yahoo's big blocks of ads. Although, I do block those.
On the other hand, is this not just way that gmail can defeat traditional ad-blocking? Easier to block some nasty flash ad than it is to filter email?
So, if one must have adverts, the usual form factor is vastly preferred. Especially if the alternative is trying to masquerade spam as legit content.
At least then I could make an informed decision.
Not 100% sure but I think this is is the same reason TV companies don't want to offer their content for streaming online, and Hulu can't remove ads for its premium users.
The truth is I think Google's adsense business has never had any real true value to customers (except for perhaps their 'first page at the top' paid ads, I use them a lot, mostly because I figure companies willing to pay for ads usually are a likely 'proper solid business').
Most of the adsense these days is 'trick next buttons', where people put them at the bottom of a page that appears to be the 'next page' button, and it's not.
I spend absolute craptonnes of money of stuff I don't need. Internet advertisements I am exposed to contribute almost zero impact to my purchasing habits.
Except for Belroy wallets. I have no idea how they figured to target me ('hipster' programmer?), but I did end up buying a wallet from them when their ads followed me around for a while. And their products are nice :) But that is it!
I couldn't care less if they are giving backdoors to the NSA to all my email including all company crap that is confidential and all. If they put ads into my email I will look elsewhere unless there is a paid option.
I doubt that adsense has positive overall value to advertisers either. Weigh the amount you spend on the ads against the amount of profit you get from the revenue resulting from that advertising. Some people will be able to make it work but I really don't think it's a large percentage.
According to Wikipedia Google made $42 billion in adwords revenue in 2012. That's like $6 from each person on the planet.
Do adwords really have enough power to increase operating profit by that much?
At the end of the day, there may be businesses blowing useless dollars on advertising, but businesses that don't watch their dollars don't tend to last very long.
I'm kind of assuming that every company doing advertising is continually making that calculation, and deciding that it does come out in their favour. Otherwise we wouldn't see nearly so much advertising.
Actually, Google display network, that is the other side of Adsense brings immense value to advertisers. I don't know exact statistics, however I estimate that the number of advertisers using display network for the immdediate or nearly-immediate conversion is in double digits.
For most of them it is mathematically proven through conversion attribution and simple calculations that advertising on display network is profitable for their business.
They showed up when I was in the market for a wallet and were exactly what I needed. Love mine, but seeing your post was kind of eerie.
If I spend money in the same way as I would have spent anyway, then the advertising has been a waste of time.
As I run a Google Apps domain for my family, that would be several hundred dollars per year.
>I'd love for Google to work out how much money they make from me in a year, and then to offer to go ad-free for 50% more than that.
How do you know that the $50 per user per year isn't exactly calculated that way? I'm actually inclined to guess that the value Google gets out of you by showing ads might be significantly higher than the $33 your calculation would allow them to earn from you.
But with a domain it's all or nothing, and I'm not paying for my brothers, parents, etc.
My guess is that most of this is search. Although it may be possible to figure out how much revenue per user Gmail makes, my guess is that it is between $10 and $15 per year.
I think FastMail is significantly cheaper ($5/yr for a personal account, says their website at https://www.fastmail.fm).
Outlook.com does have this option for $20 a year - would be interesting to know what the uptake is.
The cost there isn't what they make from you in ads, even if you're willing to pay double - it's the effort for them to switch their engineering to making money off two types of users - those pay not to be tracked and those who don't care.
Being a technology company who are seen as leaders in personalised adverts you think they would over come this terrible user experience
If that's the case then it could be time to start looking for a replacement for the last Google product I use.
Personally, I think Google added the Promotions tab exactly because they knew they would get a major backlash against putting ads in the normal inbox.
I use Gmail over IMAP so no of the web UI stuff they've done has affected me at all (in aggregate, I feel that's worked in my favour).
How does this fit in with the CAN-SPAM act?
A visible and operable unsubscribe mechanism is present in all emails.
Consumer opt-out requests are honored within 10 days.
Opt-out lists also known as Suppression lists are only used for compliance purposes.
If there is no unsubscribe option, are google in violation?
(Their get-out may be that these are not actual emails, but by making the transition from clear ad space to inbox, most people would argue that the delivery mechanism is irrelevant)
Definitely getting old. You sound exactly like every old person (3 of them) who i've moved from Outlook to Gmail.
Back then Gmail was better than everything else. Now it's an abomination which makes me want to jump ship.
FYI, everyone was upset when it changed. That's normal human behaviour. Nobody likes change. But since then, I've learnt where the "hidden" features are, and am lovin' it.
BTW, the new Hotmail (Outlook.com) is pretty awesome too. Even better than gmail IMO.
I get frustrated when I go back to my hometown and am confronted with new streets and missing landmarks, but it certainly isn't their fault.
You may not like it, and if you don't I strongly urge you to stop using their products.
Ads in your search results, ads to the left of your video, ads before the video, ads during the video
You're right of course, all of these will probably disappear soon :(
Anyone with Android phones, what's the default way to check your emails, IMAP? If yes, then there is still some hope. :-)
Today seems to be an interesting day on HN.
First, Google's ad revenue's are down ~5%, every jumps up and down saying the end is near and they need to shape up before they fade into irrelevance.
Now a hint of a forthcoming feature where they are doing just that, making a change to increase revenue and people lose their minds.
Lets think about this. The feature is under Promotions, a section already laden with junk for most people. Are we all saying that John from "matresses online" can send me news about this weeks greatest sleep position and special offers like 5% off pillow fluffing, but Google couldn't input it's own ad, which would likely be tailored to your interests in any case? If you signup to promotions for numerous sources (enough to warrant the promotions tab) you might appreciate the ad, no? If you don't, well you'll never be in the Promoted tab in most cases anyway, so it likely wont affect you all that much (assuming they wouldn't inject ad's into main inbox stream).
In my case, as a journalist, it includes a huge amount of useful email. Either way, I'd have to check it often, because Gmail's sorting into categories is abysmal. (For the same reason I have to check the spam folder multiple times a day. It contains a high proportion of legitimate email.)
However, it's a moot point because I turned the tabs off within a day.
I don't know... I don't know how Google decides mail goes into the Promotions tab, but I have no junk in there. The things that went into my Promotions tab were:
-My auto insurance policy
-A notice from my vet saying my cats were due for vaccinations.
-Some (but not all) emails from my college's Alumni association (which probably would be considered promotional)
-Emails telling me my phone bill was due.
-Email confirming a car rental.
-Emails telling me that my auto loan payment was due.
-Email from Walgreens telling me that I have a prescription that was due for refill, and to reply to that email to automatically refill that prescription.
-Some emails that sites send after you create an account with them.
All these are important for me, but I wouldn't consider any of them promotional material. I don't sign up for promotions.
I went and disabled these silly tabs...
You may be thinking of the share price which in after hours trading dropped 5% but recovered most of that this morning. Or perhaps you're thinking about the Cost-Per-Click metric which decreased somewhere around 5%.
1. Google has been doing this for years. It was known as "adwords". It's multi-billion dollars tool that gave birth to SEM.
2. It is limited to promotions tab. Promotions tab is where users go to check their promotional emails. I doubt Gmail will move them to real inbox. In fact, they will be foolish to do so. It's pretty smart move.
3. It is clearly marked as an ad with yellow background. So user is clearly informed about advertisement.
It's understandable that users are freaking out a little. But c'mon gmail has been doing ads in their inbox for a while. Email is extremely personal medium and they will be foolish to move ads from promotions tab to inbox tab. Google has lot of smart folks on their teams so we can trust them for the same.
1. This new "feature" is basically automated filters. Most folks who've used gmail for years have at least some filters set up. Google didn't say anything about throwing ads in the promotions tab, so this is a little...strange.
2. Slippery slope. How long until this populates the main inbox tab? I bet google could even charge differently depending on which tab you want your ads to show up in.
3. XMPP Federation. Google Reader. Google Wave. How long will it be until Gmail is either axed or full of so many ads that it's unusable?
4. Does Adblock / NoScript block these? Can it?
5. The history of Gmail was that it was a next-generation email service and started as an invite only club. Now, every email provider under the sun gives similar features, and gmail hasn't changed much. Personally I think that this is a good thing, it shows that the service is stable and the ideas were correct. But people at Google might think otherwise and might want to try to "innovate" more. Sooo... ads.
2. I doubt they will populate primary inboxes with ads. They created promotions tab for that so they must've thought about it long and hard. Believe me, when people like me who work in ads businesses think about introducing new ads/formats, we worry about lot of things. Ads are not about making money. Ads are about ensuring users find them useful, brands also demand that. Lastly, even if I run ad related business, I'm an average user too, I have my family who have no clue about how digital advertising works. So whatever decisions I make is important for me, my family and my users given it's implications.
3. Google axed some of the products you mentioned cause they were not sustainable for them. I doubt that will be the case for Gmail. It's most popular web-mail service.
4. No they can't as far as my knowledge goes. But someone might figure out a way to block them.
5. I was part of invite only club in 2004. And I also miss some of the cutting-edge innovations that gmail brought e.g. storage, speed, agility etc. I personally find these auto categorizations to be extremely useful. It has cleaned up my cluttered inbox. And ads are also part of it but their impact is minimal.
No. It files all your emails that it classifies as promotional but non-spam. That won't include Google Offers and Zagat if you're not subscribed to Google Offers or Zagat (for me, it's mostly events & careers newsletters). It's just an auto-categoriser (a new UI for smart labels), it doesn't invent new emails that weren't there before.
I think you misunderstand what that tab is for. It's not a place for Google advertising; it's a place where promotional emails from any site are automatically sorted into - to keep them separate from other useful email. E.g. a clothing website that sends emails about weekly sales - that'll end up under Promotional.
the "Promotions" label is applied to your incoming mail that is best classified as a "Promotion", such as any promotional email from sites you shop at - it's not additional content that Gmail is feeding you.
Unfortunately there isn't much out there :/
For me, Gmail is only an email aggregator for my multiple email accounts. At home I keep on using a trusty desktop IMAP client.
- No push on iPhone (as far as I can see)
- No Calendar integration
I personally don't use any of those things anyway but I can definitely understand why that would be a dealbreaker for a lot of people. It's great for email and the webmail interface got way better recently. Their blog is also pretty neat, they go into a fair bit of technical detail about new features and how they solved certain bugs: http://blog.fastmail.fm/2012/11/26/inter-tab-communication-u...
Anybody have any suggestions? Self-hosted or otherwise.
I'm resistant to adopting this kind of technology: I'm no security guru, but the idea of having Apache/PHP invoking Postfix directly as an executable (i.e., not via SMTP/ whatever) makes me feel nervous.
I don't know much about roundcube, but afaik it works by talking to your SMTP/IMAP servers.
Fair point. Perhaps "often agreed" would be better.
Email aliases don't count against the 5 account limit, and you can have as many as you like on whatever domains you like. Adding a domain doesn't use up an account slot, so you can set up forwarding addresses for multiple domains for no extra cost.
After all, all these moves are understandable - they now have nearly 50K employees, shareholders have high expectation on the "growth" and they need to invest on projects like glasses, self driving car and maybe mars exploration! Where does the money come from? I would expect Google will receive less criticism if they simply remove the "Don't be evil" from their company motto - then we can say Microsoft/Yahoo! is doing the same thing, why complain?
Not without IMAP it can't. I can't believe Microsoft is dragging their feet on this.
For balance: linux and open source in general.
Maybe I should go back to good old mutt..
Google knowitall overlords logging your whole digital and physical life. Media bubble. Emails shared with spooks.
Ads are annoying. I get that. This is less annoying than youtube ads. Less annoying than TV ads (even if you can fastforward them). Anyway, annoying is not the same as evil. Gmail is convenient. Ads are annoying. If (annoying > convenient), use something else.
PS isn't faceboob already doing this?
Just think of Promotions tab as a new SPAM folder.)
It's very likely a test. Google does a lot of testing that ultimately is not publicly released.
The tabs were pretty much useless anyway, because the sorting is so bad. I have one important category of mail that's already tagged with a label, and Gmail had examples under three different tabs. That's so incompetent it's almost malign.
But maybe it will become mandatory in due time?