1

When I receive an email, I can see what the sender has saved my email address as, in their Gmail contacts.

Why is this a thing and can you turn this off? Seems pretty weird if other people can see what you have saved them as.

Eg: Bob: [email protected] has Alice: [email protected] saved as Ali and sends her an email. When Alice received the email she can open the email details and see that the 'to' field says Ali [email protected]

1
  • I can't reproduce this in gmail web nor Thunderbird. Which program does it in your case, could you provide some images?
    – Andra
    Oct 2, 2021 at 18:35

2 Answers 2

1

A recipient email address has the email address but the sender can set a 'display name' that is different from the email address. How this is handled varies by email client. Some will use the email address itself, some will display a text string in addition to the email address, others will display a text string only. Traditionally most full featured email clients allowed some degree of customization. In Outlook you could customize this on an address by address way (e.g. "John (Work) [email protected]" or "John (Home) [email protected]").

Gmail typically uses the "FirstName LastName [email protected]" from your contacts (there are some exceptions that I am ignoring right now for the sake of simplicity).

I supposed Google assumed that it would be okay to refer to people by their names since those were... their names.

If you have a use case for saving contacts by names you'd rather not share with them I would suggest using their first and last names in the first and last name fields, and using the 'File As' field for the 'special' name you want to give them.

0

Gmail typically uses the "FirstName LastName [email protected]" from your contacts (there are some exceptions that I am ignoring right now for the sake of simplicity).

I think what the OP found strange (as do I) is that Gmail seems to display the recipient names as they are saved in the sender's contacts, even if they are saved differently in the recipient's contacts.

I work for a divorce mediation firm, and we have had a few issues recently, where one spouse has saved the other's contact with a less than flattering name, and it appears on emails sent to all the parties.

I'm not aware of any way to manage this issue, other than having an awareness that the names you assign to your email contacts are potentially visible to the recipients. Just adding this for context.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.