Gmail "User Happiness" Survey

closeThis post was published 12 years 10 months 7 days ago. A number of changes have been made to the site since then, so please contact me if anything is broken or seems wrong.

Something weird happened very early this morning. My Gmail account displayed a link (“New! Take our survey!”) in the top bar in the red “what’s new” color. I clicked, and it took me to a standard Google survey, complete with free-form boxes for expressing what I did and did not like about Google Mail (the survey absolutely refused to mention the word “Gmail” anywhere). I took the opportunity, of course, to suggest my list of features:

  • Signatures
  • Multiple signatures, associated with different custom From addresses
  • HTML in signatures
  • Putting the signature above quoted text in replies and forwards
  • Read/return receipts
  • Splitting and joining conversations
  • There was no way to provide an email address, so obviously the feedback is intended to be anonymous (though it knows I’ve already taken the survey; it said so when I accidentally re-POSTed my answers while trying to get at my answer text for archiving). It will be interesting if Google ever acts on all these suggestions we users give them.

    The rumored AIM integration, the new interface in testing (no, not the latest code change), the neglected Google Talk client for Windows… A lot of ideas are out there, and until now Google (or its “Trusted Testers”) has done nothing but leak an occasional screenshot (how do Google Blogoscoped, Googlified, and ZDNet get those pics?). It’s time for a release. And I hope HTML signatures are part of the bargain. Please, Google? “All I want for Christmas is HTML sigs.” 😛 That’s my most-wanted feature right now.

    It appears that my mom’s account also has the survey link, so I don’t think it’s anotherReport Bug“-type thing. Unlike that fleeting link (which is still present in the old UI), it appears to be present for all accounts and versions I have access to. I’ll try to persuade her to take the survey later. I’m guessing it’ll be around at least 24 hours, which gives me about 18 to convince her, at the least. Assuming I’m right about my time estimate, that is, which is no guarantee.


    I am an avid technology and software user, in addition to being reasonably well-versed in CSS, JavaScript, HTML, PHP, Python, and (though it still scares me) Perl. Aside from my technological tendencies, I am also a theatre technician, sound designer, violinist, singer, and actor.


    1. Ionut Alex Chitu

      < < until now Google has done nothing but leak an occasional screenshot (how do Google Blogoscoped, Googlified, and ZDNet get those pics?). >>

      Actually it wasn’t Google that leaked the screenshot, but someone who tests a not-yet-released version of Gmail. And the screenshot wasn’t posted at Google Blogoscoped, Googlified, or ZDNet (at least not originally).

    2. @ionut alex chitu: I’m guessing that, at this stage, the people testing as-yet unreleased versions of Google apps are working for Google, or are closely related to Google employees. Nevertheless, I’ve updated to be a little less specific. Thanks!

    3. Ionut Alex Chitu

      Yes, they’re called trusted testers.

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