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Confusion About GMail Vs Non GMail Based Email

Long ago, when diagnosing a problem thought to involve email, in Blogger Help Forum: Get Help with an Issue, we would ask a very simple question
Is your Blogger account based on a GMail - or non GMail - email address?
And we would carefully add
Please, do not state your email address, here!
The latter request was to prevent theft of peoples Blogger accounts.

Now, in many cases, we must qualify the question of email address. We also ask.
Is your email provided by your employer, ISP, or school network?
and even
Do you read your email in a browser window, or a local email client?

Modern email distribution is not always homogeneous.

Both questions reflect the complex nature of email delivery, that is a part of Internet reality.

Few people can accurately diagnose their problems, based only on the simple question
Is your Blogger account based on a GMail - or non GMail - email address?
The lines between GMail, and non GMail email accounts - and addresses - are not absolute, any more.

Both GMail and non GMail addresses may be used in a local network.

GMail, and non GMail addresses, alike, may use GMail browser based email, in delivery and display. And GMail accounts may use non GMail email systems, for addressing, delivery, and / or display.

These variations can lead to interesting scenarios such as mysterious loss of blog membership invitations, and of email subscriptions. And options for Blogger account recovery become more complicated - with password synchronisation issues, between the email account and the Blogger account.

Thanks to Google Apps based domains, and the ability to provide non GMail addresses which use GMail, anybody can use a non GMail address with GMail based delivery and display. Some people have even setup Blogger accounts, based on Google Apps based email addresses (again, appearing to be non GMail based) - though this is not recommended.

Managed domains may use GMail delivery, and a non GMail email address.

Corporate email systems, ISP provided email, and schools (of all grades, elementary through university) may use Google Apps based email. Many large local network based email systems have been "upgraded" to use cloud based email, such as GMail, for delivery and display. The results are not always beneficial.

And, thanks to "push / pull" GMail options, where an individual GMail account can be configured by a knowlegeable account owner, even individual account owners can use a GMail address, with non GMail delivery and display - or can use GMail display, for non GMail based address / delivery.

With computer owners who do not care or know about what email system they use, with where the individual messages may be filed, and with security filters that update without notice, loss of email messages is common.

Bounced email does not get dropped into the "Bulk" / "Spam" folder.

Note that "bounced" email may not be treated as spam. Some "bounced" email never gets as far as a spam filter - it may simply be rejected. You will look, in vain, in the "Bulk", "Inbox", and "Spam" folders.

This will interfere with account recovery - if you can't find the password reset email, how do you recover control of the account?

The simple question
Is your Blogger account based on a GMail - or non GMail - email address?
just is not accurate, when diagnosing all Blogger problems.


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