Mute email conversations

Gmail (and Mail in Google Apps for Business) offers the abil­i­ty to lớn mute con­ver­sa­tions and hide them out of your way… But only if they’re cer­tain types of con­ver­sa­tions. The mute func­tion fails lớn work on arguably the most annoy­ing of con­ver­sa­tions. Here’s away to lớn fix it so that mute actu­al­ly mutes any thread.

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Though unknown to lớn many users, Gmail includes the abil­i­ty khổng lồ mute acon­ver­sa­tion lớn save sầu your san­i­ty và inbox from con­ver­sa­tions threads have sầu out­lived their rel­e­vance to lớn you. Where you’ve just received the first mes­sage about who wants lunch CC’d khổng lồ your entire office or have giv­en up thir­ty mes­sages into lớn athread, you can mute the con­ver­sa­tion so that it (some­times) nev­er again appears in your inbox. The thread will still be saved in Gmail, avail­able if you need it, but out of the way, auto­mat­i­cal­ly archived by the Mute com­mvà. Again, that func­tion has some caveats.

How lớn Mute Conversations

Muting one or more con­ver­sa­tions from your Inbox or any label/folder, fol­low these sim­ple threesteps:

Open or con­ver­sa­tion or, in danh sách view, select one or more conversations.Cliông xã the More but­ton above your message(s).Choose Mute from the More thực đơn (see Figure 1).
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Figure 1: Choosing Mute from the More thực đơn khổng lồ hide the con­ver­sa­tion và all new mes­sage in its thread from theInbox.


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If you have sầu key­board short­cuts enabled in your Gmail trương mục (& on your domain for your users in Google Apps for Business), press­ing the Mkey on your key­board will mute acon­ver­sa­tion with­out neces­si­tat­ing the use of the Morethực đơn.


Upon mut­ing, acon­ver­sa­tion will instant­ly dis­ap­pear from your Inbox, the­o­ret­i­cal­ly nev­er lớn return again. You can still find the con­ver­sa­tion archived accord­ing to any oth­er labels applied to it. To unmute athread, select it và choose Unmute from the Morethực đơn.


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You can find all mut­ed con­ver­sa­tions by search­ing Gmail for is:muted.


Except It Doesn"t Work

The prob­lem with Gmail’s mute func­tion, the rea­son many mut­ed con­ver­sa­tions keep com­ing bachồng to the Inbox as if nev­er mut­ed in the first place, lies in this caveat from Gmail help: “Muted con­ver­sa­tions will only pop baông chồng inlớn your inbox ready for your atten­tion if anew mes­sage in the con­ver­sa­tion is addressed to lớn you and no one else, or if you’re added to lớn the ‘To’ or ‘CC’ line in anew mes­sage.” In prac­tice, that caveat means that mute does­n’t work on one of the most com­tháng clas­si­fi­ca­tions of gmail for which mute is desired--forum threads và mail­ing lists. Many diễn đàn và mail­ing các mục appli­ca­tions include your address in the TO or CC lines. Ergo, mute is defeat­ed for email from such sources. Because many peo­ple pri­mar­i­ly, or only, want lớn use mute for diễn đàn threads and mail­ing list mes­sages, Google’s excep­tion khổng lồ mut­ing ren­ders the entire mute func­tion useless.

And that’s why I’ve sầu cre­at­ed asolu­tion lớn fix mute’s self-defeating caveat.

Like apply­ing mute itself, the fix is athree-step process:

Make alabel inGmail.Add asim­ple Google script using the instruc­tions và script below. (Don’t be fright­ened by the word “script”; it’s just acopy & paste process, và I’ll talk you through it with­out you ever hav­ing to write aline ofcode.)Mute one or more con­ver­sa­tions as normal.

Step 1: Create a Label in Gmail

If you know how lớn cre­ate labels in Gmail, cre­ate one called “Muted” or what­ev­er else you like. You can even nest the label below par­ent labels.

If cre­at­ing Gmail labels is new to you, fol­low these steps after open­ingGmail.

In your Gmail Inbox, clichồng the gear icon in the upper-right cor­ner và choose Settings from the thực đơn as in Figure 2.
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Figure 2: Accessing Gmail’s Setting thực đơn via the gearicon.


Click on Labels from the tabs list along the top of the main win­dowarea.Your view may dif­fer from mine (see Figure 3), with more or few­er sec­tions. Find the Labels sec­tion & clichồng the Create New Label button.
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Figure 3: Labels, which act lượt thích tags and fold­ers in Gmail, can be cre­at­ed & edit­ed from the Labels pane inside Gmail’s Settings.


In the New Label dia­log enter the name for your new label (see Figure 4). That should be Muted. You can also choose lớn nest Muted beneath, or inside, anoth­er label that will act as apar­ent khổng lồ Muted. cảnh báo that if you choose to nest the label beneath apar­ent, you will need lớn mod­i­fy aline of the copy-and-paste script below before it will work foryou.
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Figure 4: Creating anew label lớn enable true mut­ing of conversations.


Cliông chồng OK in the New Label dia­log to lớn cre­ate the Muted label.Return khổng lồ your Inbox by click­ing it in the left column.

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With the Muted label cre­at­ed, you’re halfway khổng lồ hav­ing aful­ly func­tion­al conversation-muting func­tion inGmail.

Step 2: Add a Simple Script to lớn Google

If you’re already famil­iar with cre­at­ing Google scripts, feel không tính phí to lớn jump down to the copy & paste por­tion. Otherwise, let’s start at the beginning.

Click the New but­ton on the left & choose from the pop­up menu More > Google Apps Script. Up will pop ascript edi­tor lượt thích the one in Figure 5.
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Figure 5: Creating anew Google Apps Script.


At the top, where it present­ly says “Untitled project,” click và rename the project to “Truly Mute Conversations”. Cliông chồng OK lớn com­mit the new project name.In the code edi­tor beneath the Code​.gs tab, select all the exist­ing text và delete it.Copy the fol­low­ing code và paste it into lớn the Google Apps Script code editor.

function labelMutetoIgnore() var batchSize = 100 // Process up to 100 threads at once var threads = GmailApp.search("is:muted"); var label = GmailApp.getUserLabelByName("Muted"); for (var t in threads) threads.addLabel(label); function archiveMuted() var batchSize = 100 // Process up lớn 100 threads at once var threads = GmailApp.search("label:inbox label:Unimportant/Muted"); for (j = 0; j threads.length; j+=batchSize) GmailApp.moveThreadsToArchive(threads.slice(j, j+batchSize));
NOTEIf you nest­ed the Muted Gmail label beneath or inside anoth­er label, change the val­ue in line four khổng lồ reflect the nest­ing. For exam­ple, if you put the Muted label under the par­ent label Unimportant, you would need to lớn change line four to read var label = GmailApp.getUserLabelByName("Unimportant/Muted");.


In the tool­bar above the code edi­tor cliông xã the disk-lượt thích Save but­ton to lớn save sầu the script. At this point you should have sầu exact­ly what Ihave sầu in Figure 6.
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Figure 6: After nam­ing the script & past­ing in the script code itself, the Truly Mute Conversations script is ready to be autho­rized và scheduled.


Clichồng the Run but­ton, which looks like atyp­i­cal play but­ton of an arrow fac­ing right, and is just afew but­tons away fromSave.You’ll see ames­sage appear at the top for amoment before you’re prompt­ed via adia­log for autho­riza­tion khổng lồ run the script. Cliông chồng the Continue but­ton và then Allow in the sub­se­quent pop­up win­dow lớn allow Google to lớn run the script in your Gmail account.
NOTE

If you receive sầu a “Script func­tion note found: myFunction” error, sim­ply save sầu the script with the Save but­ton in the tool­baragain.


We need khổng lồ sched­ule the script to lớn run on its own peri­od­i­cal­ly, so click the Current Project’s Triggers but­ton in the tool­bar. You’ll find it between Save sầu andRun.When the Current Project’s Trigger dia­log appears to lớn tell you that your script has­n’t any trig­gers, clichồng the linked mes­sage to add one. That will reveal the fields in Figure 7.
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Figure 7: Creating the first project trigger.


Leave the Run field set khổng lồ the first func­tion, labelMutetoIgnore, but change the Events fields to, first, Time-Driven, then Minutes Timer, &, final­ly, Every 5Minutes. You may want lớn change the inter­vals lat­er, check­ing every minute or every 10min­utes, khổng lồ suit your tastes.Cliông chồng the Add aNew Trigger links và repeat the trig­ger con­fig­u­ra­tion, using the same Time-Driven, Minutes-Timer, and Every 5Minutes options but for the sec­ond func­tion, archiveMuted. You should kết thúc up with the same set­tings Ihave sầu in Figure 8. ClickSave sầu.
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Figure 8: With both trig­gers con­fig­ured khổng lồ check Gmail every five sầu min­utes, mut­ed con­ver­sa­tions will now stay hid­den even if Gmail would oth­er­wise put them baông chồng into lớn theInbox.


Save the script from the tool­bar và cchiến bại the Truly Mute Conversations brows­er tab; unless you want khổng lồ adjust the tim­ings or label nest­ing, you won’t need it again. The script is now com­plete và will auto­mat­i­cal­ly run, pro­cess­ing your gmail, every five sầu min­utes until you cthua trận your Gmail account.
NOTE

To edit the script in the future, sim­ply return to https://​dri​ve​.google​.com & double-clichồng the Truly Mute Conversations script.


Step 3: Mute One or More Conversations

All the hard work is done--easy as it was. The final step is to lớn chạy thử out the new Truly Mute Conversations script.

In Gmail, either open acon­ver­sa­tion or select it by click­ing the check­mark field of the con­ver­sa­tion in danh sách view. Make note of the sub­ject line of the con­ver­sa­tion; we’ll search for it again in amoment.Press M or choose Mute from the More thực đơn. This will mute the con­ver­sa­tion, which, if you’re view­ing your Inbox, will imme­di­ate­ly archive sầu the con­ver­sa­tion, mak­ing it disappear.Using the Search field at the top of Gmail, type in the sub­ject line of the email thread you just mut­ed and press Return/Enter. We need lớn find that mut­edgmail.Once you’ve found the mut­ed con­ver­sa­tion, drag it over the Inbox entry at the top of the left col­umn and let go. This will move the mut­ed con­ver­sa­tion bachồng khổng lồ your Inbox, mim­ic­k­ing the behav­ior of Gmail when it receives anew mes­sage in the afore­men­tioned forums thread or oth­er type of con­ver­sa­tion where­in your address appears in the TO or CCfield.Switch bachồng lớn your Inbox, and wait. Within five min­utes the script we cre­at­ed should:Apply the Muted label khổng lồ the con­ver­sa­tion in question.Archive sầu the con­ver­sa­tionagain.

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The pur­pose of the script is khổng lồ over­come the glar­ing caveat in the mute func­tion. Utilizing my Truly Mute Conversations script fills in the hole, forc­ing Gmail to lớn gen­uine­ly silence email con­ver­sa­tions you mark as mute--even if new mes­sages are received with your address in the TO or CCfield.


Chuyên mục: Mail