• 04.15.11

Gmail Now Prevents Embarrassing Mistaken-Identity Email Messages

What about Bob? He won’t be forgotten or confused with others anymore, thanks to a new Gmail default mechanism emerging from Labs.



Gmail Labs is a repository of fun and helpful stuff–so helpful, in fact, that we often wonder why Labs features don’t become Gmail fixtures more often. Starting now, Gmail has decided that two Labs features– “Don’t forget Bob” and “Got the wrong Bob?”–both deserve to enter the Gmail canon. A few of the Fast Company staff found these additions live in their accounts today.

And here’s one I could have used last week, when I wanted to email my editor Tyler Gray and my colleague Greg Ferenstein something. I accidentally sent the materials to Tyler and to a completely different Greg F., a friend who doesn’t work for Fast Company. Whoops. “Got the wrong Bob?” would have caught that error (its algorithm is sophisticated enough to handle Gregs, too, apparently). When I enter the wrong Greg F.’s info, a red “Did you mean” pops up, and offers me up the Greg F. I intended to email. Just clicking that replaces the errant Greg with the proper one.

Read More: Most Innovative Companies: Google

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About the author

David Zax is a contributing writer for Fast Company. His writing has appeared in many publications, including Smithsonian, Slate, Wired, and The Wall Street Journal.