How to remove auto additional "RE" in subject when you are answering via web Gmail?


There's a link called "edit subject" that you click on to reveal the text box for the subject line.

But you shouldn't change the subject line, unless your reply really has a different topic (subject)! Here's why:

For one thing, if you edit the line just to remove "RE:" then Gmail will treat the message as a new thread and won't match it to the existing thread -- so you lose the benefit of Gmail's great interface, and so does the recipient. If I were the recipient, I'd be annoyed at this.

Another reason is that putting "RE:" before a response is a tradition and a convention, and there's a reason why every mail program on the planet works this way. It indicates that your message is a REsponse REgarding something you REceived. This is a courtesy towards your recipient. Why would you want to not show your recipient this courtesy?

  • 3
    gmail doesn't need the subject line to figure out the threads. The email reply has a "In-Reply-To" header that connects the thread. You can see the header if you "Show Original" on your email message.
    – Eyal
    Oct 18 '10 at 15:30
  • Eyal is completely right, so +1, but some (few) naive mail readers only look at "RE". I remember when I used Outlook Express for reading news back in 1997 or possibly 1998, people complained that their mail readers got confused because my Outlook Express was configured to use "SV" (Swedish version of "RE") when replying to messages. Oct 18 '10 at 21:38
  • Eyal, sorry but I disagree. If I rename a subject line in Gmail, that reply is not part of the thread it was in reply to. I am aware of the x-header and it's gotta have something to do with it (particularly with managing international versions of RE: like AW: and SV:) but it's not enough in itself. Oct 19 '10 at 18:22

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