Gmail has never been my favourite webmail client, but the ‘new’ gmail makes me want to break things. Have a look at the screenshot below:
Rather than sending obvious spam to the spam folder, or not displaying it in the first place, Gmail now sends it to the top of the list in the Promotions tab. But there is no way to deal with these ads from the list. No, to get rid of them, you have to open the advert. and ‘dismiss’ them. One. By. One.
I only had two of the bloody things to get rid of today, but what about tomorrow? My only option is to write the promotions tab off as just another spam folder. But wait….
…Gmail decides what to put into that Promotions tab, not me. This is a sample of what gets stuffed into the Promotions tab by the Gmail algorithms:
Most of this stuff is ‘promotional’, including the political emails, but sometimes important notifications do end up in the wrong place [one of my big gripes about the new Inbox] so I can’t just shut the door on the Promotions tab and its PAID advertisements completely.
There are workarounds, of course. For example, I could manually create labels for the few important emails that do end up in the Promotions tab, which would allow me to never see that particular tab again. But I shouldn’t have to, even to pay for a ‘free’ email client.
Unfortunately, I suspect paid ads like this are just the start of an avalanche. Once other ‘free’ email clients see the money Google will rake in from these paid ads, they’ll jump on the bandwagon too, and the rise of ads will continue until people stop using free email clients. Inevitable but revolting.