The following message is about following messages. Or not.

The Outlook team went to great lengths explaining to email users how to “Follow” and “Unfollow” a group, to deliver messages to your Inbox. The post in the Outlook Blog takes the reader through Outlook on every platform, just to make sure the message is clear. You don’t have to receive all messages from an Outlook group.

…if members want to engage with a group in the shared workspace only and don’t want emails from the group in their inbox, they can stop following the group at any time but continue to be a member of the group.

That is, visit the group to read the messages sent to the group. You’ll still receive a message in your Inbox if it mentions you. But you won’t receive a copy of each conversation and reply. In Distribution List speak, you won’t receive a copy of every message sent to the DL.

The concept is new to a lot of people who don’t use social media much. But to those who do, we’re familiar with unfollowing a conversation or turning notifications off for a group.

Is email becoming even more “social?” A couple of years ago, Outlook groups added ‘Likes’. More recently, we’re guided towards short replies by being presented with a small message box at the bottom of a thread. We do have the option to expand the box and use a full editor. But it does feel like email in Outlook groups are becoming more like a social media interaction.

Do you think we’ll see GIFs next? If so, will Outlook group owners be able to turn them off for their group?

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