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October 14, 2010

Gmail Auto-unsubscribe Search

Gmail has a feature that lets you unsubscribe from a newsletter or a mailing list when you report one of the messages as spam.

"You'll see the unsubscribe tool when you mark a message from particular types of mailing lists as spam. If the particular message is a misuse of a mailing list you like to receive, you can Report spam as usual. But if you never want to receive another message or newsletter from that list again, click Unsubscribe instead. We'll send a request to the sender that your email address be removed from the list."


Unfortunately, this feature doesn't work for all newsletters and mailing lists, so it's not easy to see it in action. I've noticed that "auto-unsubscribe" works for Google Groups messages and for Google's newsletters.

To find all the "auto-unsubscribe"-enabled messages, search for label:^unsub.

15 comments:

  1. that is an old feature

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  2. alex you are very slow
    http://gmailblog.blogspot.com/2009/07/unsubscribing-made-easy.html 2009!

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  3. I didn't claim that this is a new feature. The post was only about a Gmail system label that lets you find "auto-unsubscribe" messages.

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  4. If you want to unsubscribe without reporting the message as spam, click "show details" in the top-right corner of the message, then click "Unsubscribe from this sender."

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  5. Interesting.
    You made me curious: do you know more system labels?

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  6. I discovered this wonderful feature more than a year ago much to my sheer delight.

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  7. Thanks for the head's up, how did you hear about/figure it out?

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  8. It will for any mailing list that follows the RFC and provides a list: header. it won't work for other ones

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  9. I didn't know about this - wow! What a thoughtful feature - go Gmail :D

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  10. To find all the "auto-unsubscribe"-
    enabled messages, search for label
    :^unsub.

    Although I've known about this feature for some time and having used it on occasion to great benefit, the tip you've provided about being able to locate messages that respond to the 'unsubscribe feature' is absolutely priceless!

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  11. @Michael: Gmail has many system labels, but most of them are available in the interface (inbox, sent, drafts, spam, trash, allmail, important, chats, buzz). Some other labels: unread, outbox. All of these labels have simplified names that are used in Gmail's code. For example, to find unread messages, you can search for label:unread, l:unread, label:^u or l:^u.

    @Cougar: From the source code.

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  12. I wish that box could also let you unsubscribe without reporting it as spam. (I know you can do that elsewhere.) A lot of people use the spam button even on stuff they legitimately signed up for at one time. (Though this is also on the email senders to make sure their unsubscribe links are easy to find and use if they don't want to get reported as spam.)

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  13. Nice tip.

    It seems to be only picking up on Google Alerts and not the other newsletters I've subscribe to.

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  14. Nice post! Cute that you highlighted an unsubscribe for Digg, a lot of people are doing that these days since their revolutionarily lousy site update.

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  15. Really asinine IMHO to put the unsubscribe feature in the Report Spam button . Gmail could have taken the lead into promoting a usable unsubscribe button via List-unsubscribe header so it would make it easier for people to unsubscribe. Also shame that gmail also is the only 1 of top5 Email ISP that does NOT participate in feedback loop program.

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