back to article Google makes Gmail EVEN NOISIER, or should that be nosier?

Google has added more intrusive buttons to its email service as it continues to try to spread its ad goo across its vast online estate. Mountain View débuted its so-called quick action buttons in May this year to allow Gmail users to respond to certain types of messages without having to open them first. It meant that Gmailers …

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Alternatively, if you're using an Android device ...

... the K-9 email client is your friend.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Alternatively, if you're using an Android device ...

Can you elaborate?

I simply use the standard email client but wisely set all downloads to "Text only" (as I do for *all* my email clients). Then again, I refuse to use the Gmail account Google so nicely forced donated to me during my Play activation and will not even log on to check to see how much spam it has been filled with.

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Re: Alternatively, if you're using an Android device ...

> ... the K-9 email client is your friend.

Affirmative!

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And that is why . . .

I finally gave in and started using Thunderbird as my email client for Gmail.

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If google ever believed in "don't be evil"...

...they certainly don't any more. It's not alone in creating walled gardens, taking away choice, stripping privacy and forcing services on its users, but it is the most aggressive -- with the possible exceptions of Microsoft and Apple. And that's pretty fricking bad.

For instance, Google's recent fiascoesque changes to Youtube require youtube users to have a google+ account and share their youtube likes, dislikes, comments and viewing habits on Google+. Why? To force users to use Google+.

What was that? "If you don't want to share your kitty-video habit with the world, create a throwaway anonymous account"? Yeah that used to work, but if Google AI gets suspicious about your account (for instance you log in from a new device) it now requires a cellphone number as validation, or you wont be allowed to log in. So much for privacy.

#fuckgoogle

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Re: If google ever believed in "don't be evil"...

Alternatively, you could just turn off the sharing. You may need a Google+ account, but sharing is optional.

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Re: If google ever believed in "don't be evil"...

Alternatively, you could just avoid the urge to join the pre-pubescent Youtube idiots in the comments section.

And guess what? AdBlock strips ads from Gmail. Wonder of all wonders.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Sharing optional

Yet "sharing" your personal and private information such as your IRL name and/or contact phone number, in order to activate your Google+ account, is not.

So, as remains, #fuckgoogle.

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JDX
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Re: Sharing optional

It's sad that to many people. Google is the most 'evil' thing they're aware of in the world. And it's not even like we can assume most of these idiots are Americans.

But hey, people being murdered for their beliefs is far away... having to use your real name is much closer. And I'm probably being silly to suggest having to provide your personal information is perhaps a rung or two down the ladder of evil.

Since we're being cool and trendy I'd better jump on the hashtag bandwagon too (what a moronic habit that is while we're on the subject).

#MiddleClassInternetWarriors

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Re: If google ever believed in "don't be evil"...

An account is required if want to simply vote to like/dislike a video or, more importantly, save anything to a favorites list.

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Re: Sharing optional

> to many people. Google is the most 'evil' thing they're aware of in the world

The most evil thing I'm aware of in the world is the on-going genocide in Syria, followed by the situation in a series of mega-oppressive dictatorships like North Korea, Zimbabwe, Iran and Chechnya. In what way does that preclude me from saying "fuck google for making a pig's ear of Youtube"?

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FAIL

From a satisfied Google+ user ...

YouTube video

NSFW (depending where you work)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: From a satisfied Google+ user ...

Another "ha ha only serious" video on the whole saga, one that made me snort:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M45pYqVsreI

(somegreybloke's characteristically deadpan take on it all..)

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Headmaster

Re: From a satisfied Google+ user ...

I suspect it's less safe in the US than it is in the UK.

Why is it full of Americanisms if she's British? Youth of today. Bah.

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Google slow?

Off topic, but has anybody noticed that Google search is slow these days. I mean when you click a result, there is a delay before it shows the page. Google seems to visit another google.com address in between- you see the URL flash in Firefox too quick to read. I am not talking about content linked to the target page or CDN data, this is something that happens while the search results are still showing, before your browser gets the new URL.

Bing feels quicker.

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Re: Google slow?

Google, Bing. A curse on both their houses.

I'm using DuckDuckGo.

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142

Re: Google slow?

Could this be the system wide SSL that Google has introduced? I know they've made vast improvements on SSL latency, but that was focused on user/server data. wonder are they finding that latency becomes an issue when every step internally involves an encryption/decryption cycle that it didn't have before?

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Black Helicopters

Re: Google slow?

"Google seems to visit another google.com address in between"

You sure that's not google.nsa?

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Re: Google slow?

Slow-mo video reveals the fleeting link to be

www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=9&ved=<string>&url=http://www.bbc.co.uk/....

So they are putting your search on file then forwarding to bbc.co.uk (or wherever) but stripping the "q" query so that BBC and other webmasters can's see the query terms. We already knew about the stripping bit - a sharp practice that violates protocols and withholds information from web site owners who then have to use google analytics.

Summary: Google slows you down in order to track you more thoroughly and penetrate more deeply into the business of other websites, pushing them towards Google... and so on.

Difficult to smile about anything Google does today.

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FAIL

Re: Google slow?

"... but stripping the "q" query so that BBC and other webmasters can's see the query terms. We already knew about the stripping bit - a sharp practice that violates protocols and withholds information from web site owners who then have to use google analytics."

.....Except that they aren't doing that

It's up to the browser to send the referer(sic) string, and this value is expected to be the URL of the linking page.

The only way they could hide this would be to use a POST rather than a GET for their search form, but still the browser could be rewritten to compensate for that if required (though, breaking expected protocols in the first place.)

Ultimately, whether to send referring information is entirely down to the browser. Google has sod all control if your browser decides to tell a web site the URL of the previous page.

So, if you are seeing any protocol violations, blame the users browser, or maybe any proxy they use - nothing to do with Google.

What *does* happen, however, is related to Google now allowing users to use https access.

The standards specify that a browser mustn't send referral information if coming from a secure site. If they did, *that* would be a protocol violation. Again, this is a browser thing - nothing to do with Google.

Ironically, the closest Google come to protocol violation in all this is in the ways they try *to* get the browser to send query data for https links - the exact opposite of stripping it!

They previously did this by first directing the browser to a specially crafted non-https address, which then bounced to the final destination, so making the browser pass referrer info through as a consequence. However, I think they now do this with a custom header, which capable browsers can parse appropriately.

Either way, the redirect mentioned by the original poster has nothing to do with query-stripping, but instead, history gathering, and presumably some kind of click-through statistics.

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Orlowski?

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Comments seem to be appearing without prior moderation, so probably not!

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Anonymous Coward

I was wondering the same thing especially with the line

"as it continues to try to spread its ad goo across its vast online estate"

Have you visited the Register without Adblock on recently? It is getting ridiculous, there is hardly a gap left for the article with the ads forcing everything to squeeze into a little tiny space.

It actually feels like those old search engines in the Pre-Google days that Google came along to replace with simple text ads.

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While marketing is important to Google,

they need to move them back to their basement cubes where they belong and stop letting them muck up what use to be clean and easy to use interfaces.

These new button options don't annoy me nearly as much as the new cryptic grid that replaced the easy to read labels that once graced the top of the gmail interface. I've also noticed the minimalist Google search page seems to be dying. All too frequently these days it has some other special thing going on.

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Happy

Re: While marketing is important to Google,

Well I don't think they should totally get rid of the marketing people. They actually seem to have an idea of how to create a noticeable button. Whereas the new GMail UI designers seem to have been brought up in the Egyptian hieroglyphics school - where if you translate this then the Gods will bring a curse down upon you...

So what we need to do is send the techies into the marketing department. Where their natural grumpiness and cynicism will destroy marketing from within. And get the marketroids sent to developing, where they'll be unable to make any further changes to the product, but we might get some shinier buttons. Win - win methinks...

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I love gmail

I use it for all my network backup and ups status messages and alerts.

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Doh...it's how they make money...can we back to REAL news now?

Any innovation that Google make may benefit some users, and may therefore be used or experienced by users and bring an audience for ads. This is not news, this is the modus operandi for crying out loud...it is a business model that everybody is well aware of.

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Ha

First they moved competitive promos into the separate tab so that users will not see them. So Groupon, LivingSocial and others get fvcked.

Step 2, they made responding to Google Offers straight from the email listing. Well played Google, well played.

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Re: Ha

a) My Google Offers go to the Promotions tab, along with other promotions. b) Anybody can structure their emails to provide the same convenience that YouTube and Google Offers enjoy by adding a little schema.org markup, see https://developers.google.com/gmail/actions/overview

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Re: Ha

They can but they don't. That's why non-Google vendors are now posting instruction videos and how to's on their site, as they know their emails will be missed by default. Google made a choice for you what you want to read and what you want to skip. Gmail is now de-facto vehicle for Google ad delivery with other vendors blocked. G+ is a personal data scrap vehicle, or trying to become one.

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Hilarious shitstorm brewing for Google

Seems Googles recent changes have somewhat annoyed its user base:

Google's Lead Programmer's Video Response to Criticisms (the video itself is a massive, epic, flawlessly executed troll, but the real entertainment is in the comment section; note that this is the new and improved, troll-and-spam-free Youtube comment system)

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Big Brother

Just say 'enough', it's not that hard.

Hello there ...

Guess what?

There 'is' a very simple, three step solution to all these GMail issues:

1. stop complaining, Google does not give a monkey´s toss about you or your privacy issues.

2. drop Gmail, it will get worse and worse as time goes by.

3. get yourself another, paid but inexpensive email provider.

After all, GMail is not mandatory, or is it?

For the last 13+ years I have had what was once a wonderful (and free) email provider.

I signed up in late 1999 when the one I had went titsup and never had to look back.

A few years later their business model became hard to sustain, so they started charging a nominal yearly fee which I happily went along with: they had given me a great many years of excellent service and tech support for free and was very happy with both.

Two or three years on, probably due to financial problems, their business was sold off to a large reginal ISP which set up the email service I was on using the Zimbra web mail platform, which was not quite the same but was OK. The people who I used to deal with at TS were no longer there but besides that, everything seemed to work well enough and fees remained at the same level.

Some time ago things changed: my email service was taken off the Zimbra web mail platform and put on the Gmail platform, no advertising in exchange for a USD $24,00/yr. fee. I had a few hickups at the start but they were eventually fixed.

But I do not like how things work in GMail and after 13+ years of having the same email address, I have decided to change.

It took me a while but I found one that may turn out to be up to scratch, only time will tell.

For USD $4.95/yr. it's not a problem to try it out and see.

Just my $0.02, as always YMMV.

Cheers.

CIV

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Re: Just say 'enough', it's not that hard.

Seeing as you are changing your email address anyway, go for your own domain and get its email forwarded to your new mail-service.

That way, if you ever need to move again, at least your email address won't need to change.

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Coffee/keyboard

large reginal ISP

The Queen owns an ISP??

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Anonymous Coward

Cool buttons

Now where do I click to disable them ?

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Good thing then ...

That I don't actually use GMail.

I've had an account for years which I've never, ever used then I recently made a new one (shorter name, so less typing) just to register my Nexus 7 with and which has received a few confirmations of app purchases.

I must be the one of the few people in the world who actually uses their ISP POP3 account.

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Anonymous Coward

Jeez, you guys are negative

"The latest Gmail strategy builds on CEO Larry Page's vision to keep the firm's sticky paws wrapped around Google users"

I honestly fail to see what is bad about this new thing, apart from the fact that it does add noise to the UI… And anyway, they already had all the data about your mails, buttons or no buttons.

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Anonymous Coward

What Ads? What buttons? What promotions?

This is very odd. Maybe Google has left me out.

OK, there is ABP --- but even if I disable it, all I see is an ad or two on the right-hand side of the screen.

I'm not complaining! Anyway, I only use it as a back-up address and for android account.

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JDX
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If Google can earn more money by releasing a more useful product, good for them. Even if those two facts are happy accident rather than cause and effect.

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Unhappy

noiser *and* nosier?

We will look back on this as the time when Google got in on the ground floor of stripping peoples privacy for marketing purposes and the yoof were too dumb or uncaring to do anything about it.

The question is will the parasite get fatter and fatter off it's hosts (or "users" as they are politely called) or will the hosts institute "parasite control"?

Will Google be the Smallpox or the Malaria of the 21st Century?

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Instead of being worried about GMAIL users should switch to a friendlier service like Outlook.com or Yahoo Mail.

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So....abou that IMAP access....

Wonder how long until they kill IMAP/POP3/SMTP....or make it a "premium" feature?

When that happens (and please do note the "when"), I think it will be time for me to warm up my email hosting skills, because at that point me and gmail will be parting ways.

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A noisier UI will probably be irritating. Anyone else get occasionally tired of the constantly-changing UI?

GOOGLE STOP MOVING MY BUTTONS.

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