Gmail Tip #14: What Happens To Sent Messages?

When you “send” a message, two things happen to it: 1. it gets copied into your “All Mail” view, and 2. it is visible in the “Sent Mail” view. Many email clients and Webmail services let you optionally delete all sent messages by default, but Gmail doesn’t offer this feature. Here’s why…

One of Gmail’s intentions is to get you out of the “trash everything” mindset. This is one of the reasons why they offer 1GB of storage. Providing this extra space gives you the ability to leverage features such as “Search”, “Labels”, and “Conversations”. Most email services limit us to a very small storage space, so we have to continually delete old messages to allow room for new ones. The problem is that though there are definitely many messages that should be permanently deleted, many are important enough to us that we may need or want to keep them for future reference. Gmail’s added space gives us that capability.

In keeping with this “future-thinking” mindset, by retaining the messages you send, Gmail easily and conveniently matches those messages to any corresponding replies onto “Conversations” making following threads of conversation easier. In any case, contrary to some false information being spread, you still retain full control of your messages. Any message, either sent or received, can be easily and permanently deleted as you desire; the same as any other email service.

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