Dots in Gmail addresses not as important as you think

Sending an email to [email protected] or [email protected] goes to the same user

Tech Desk February 22, 2018
A Google search page is reflected in sunglasses in this photo illustration taken in Brussels May 30, 2014. PHOTO: REUTERS

There’s always been a lot of emphasis placed on getting the exact email right.

Most email addresses have a period (.) somewhere in between, just to make it more quirky or sometimes because it seems like the only option. Turns out, dots may not be as important as you think.

According to Google, all dot versions of a Gmail address are owned by the same user.

For example, if you own the email address [email protected] and someone happens to add a dot while sending an email to this address, you will still receive it.

Google aims to get 'diverse perspectives' into search results

This means all emails sent to the following versions of your original email address will be received by you:

[email protected]

[email protected]

[email protected]

This is because "Gmail doesn't recognize periods as characters in addresses," according to Google's Blog post. It works the other way round too, for example, if you own the email [email protected], all emails sent to the account [email protected] will come to your email inbox.

It, of course, doesn't work if you start sending emails to [email protected] Google is not alone in making this a 'Dotless' experience with Facebook functioning in the same way.

Sort out your Inbox

This does make life easier if you forget where to add the dots in other people's emails but also is a handy tool to sort out your inbox.

For example, if everyone emails you at [email protected], that will stay as your main email address but if you happen to give your email to someone who could possibly spam you, you can give them a different version of your email address.

Let's go with something like [email protected].

Through this, you can create a folder for all mail sent to [email protected], and automatically star, archive, or delete those incoming emails.

Google raises price of YouTube TV, adds sports, Turner

This particular technique also works with the + symbol, which can be used in any email address to create filters.

For example, you could provide spammers with this version of your email address: [email protected] or [email protected] and manually sort out emails sent to these addresses in a separate folder.

Rather than being bombarded by hundreds of emails all randomly sorted, you can manually set up different folders for different categories using these smart tricks.

At the end of the day, you will receive all emails using the same email account, the difference is they'll all be going to their designated folders.


Jeff Watkins | 4 years ago | Reply Thanks for a relevant article, even if it was about a decade late. Guys, we landed on the moon, too!
Mehdi | 4 years ago | Reply Dot worked in email address, but + in address bounced back.
Replying to X

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.

For more information, please see our Comments FAQ


Most Read