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Feature update: Email sending behavior for Groups in Outlook

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Microsoft

We have recently fixed the email sending behavior to a group, where senders had complained about receiving the emails they send to a group, back in their personal inbox. With this fix, senders will no longer receive the emails they send to a group, back in their personal inbox. The sender can receive email sent to group in there Inbox, they have to login to there mailbox  using OWA, and then Settings->Mail->Groups->"Send me a copy of email I send to a group"

 

The primary complaints we heard were about reading the same message users sent to a group multiple times - in their sent messages, and their inbox.

 

We believe sending an email to a person or to a group should be consistent, and this circling back of an email from a group was just leading to confusion, unnecessary triage, and inconvenience for a lot of our users.

 

We understand that some users had started using this inconsistent behavior as a way to confirm if their emails were delivered to a group. An email sent to a group is already available in the group's conversation archive as well as in the sender's sent email.

 

Update (4/7/2017):

Thanks for all your valuable feedback. Though a good majority of our users have embraced this change for Groups, there's also a section of our users who complained about this change affecting their workflows. We value all the feedback from our users and hence we are considering enhancing this feature to address the negative feedback. Please watch this space for further updates on this feature in the coming weeks.

100 Replies
This is the kind of communication I was expecting and that can be also found here: https://products.office.com/en-us/business/office-365-roadmap?featureid=76175

In general that will be nice to have the notification about such updates in Admin Message Center. Another recently introduced change is updating default mailbox size from 50MB to 100MB - also there was no notification (except appearing it in Roadmap Rolling Out section). Or i missed something?

 

Another point is "More info" in Roadmap sometimes forwards us on outdated articles.

 

Anyway, perhaps above is for separate discussion in another thread. As for this feature have nothing against it except no notification was sent.

Thanks for your feedback.

The message center post for this change is live, ID - MC94667.
Indeed both changes are in the Messages Center

Hi Ravin,

 

Found it, was published yesterday. When i missed the notification, sorry. Will try to find one about the change of mailbox size.

 

By the way, i guess that's not for you, but could you within Microsoft to unify the form for the message subject. Some starts from "Updated feature(s):..", some from "Feature(s) update:...". Not a big deal, just easier to check.

Perhaps I need to change my mobile on one with bigger screen... Or check the notifications more often, when i pay more attention to each of it.

Thank you

I don't understand this upgrade - we have users complain that they don't get messages sent to groups in their inbox - so are we taking away the subscribe button too? I don't want to see this go away. Users want the group messages in their inbox. 

Is there any way to reverse this change?  I've got users who want the emails to keep coming to their own inbox

If the Office365 group is nested in a distribution list is the behavior the same? Seems inconsistent in what I have seen so far.

best response confirmed by Ravin Sachdeva (Microsoft)
Solution

@Nicholas Williams - No, there is no effect to group subscription options with this change. Subscribed users will continue to receive all group conversations, messages and events in their inbox as usual.

 

The only effect of this change will be on the sender of the messages to groups as below.

 

Old behavior

I send a message to a group, or reply back to a message from a group. Message is delivered to the group and is available in the group's conversation archive. I would also receive my message in back my inbox.

 

Revised behavior

I send a message to a group, or reply back to a message from a group. Message is delivered to the group and is available in the group's conversation archive. I would NOT receive my message in back my inbox.

 

Would be great if you can help us understand why your users are complaining with this change? What additional benefit does it provide to users when they receive their sent email back again in their inbox? Is it just a confirmation that the message was delivered to the group?

Hi @Joe Savage - Would be great if you can help us understand why you'd like to reverse this change? What additional benefit does it provide to users when they receive their sent email back again in their inbox? Is it just a confirmation that the message was delivered to the group?

 

We believe that sending messages to a group of people should behave the same way as sending messages to individuals. This change is made to achieve parity in email sending behavior to a person or to a group. When I send an email to a person, I do not receive that email back in my inbox. So why would i expect otherwise if I send that message to a group?

@Michelle Proper - can you help me understand the issue in detail - You're saying that you have a DL which has a Group as a member. When you send an email to that DL, you get that email back in your inbox? Is my understanding is correct?

 

We have not changed email sending behavior for DLs. If you send an email to a DL, you will receive this email back in your inbox. This behavior is only changed for Groups.

Yes, we have a DL that has an Office365 group as a member. One member of that Office 365 group sent an email to the DL yesterday and he didn't get a copy. I was curious if the new group functionality overrides the DL functionality and if someone wants a copy of the message they send to the DL they need to cc themselves.

The post that you provided wasn't 100% clear - I completely understand now.

 

I would like to be able to "Force" Subscriptions to group converstations to users inboxes and not let them unsubscribe from the group conversations. 

Yes, they would like to receive it as a confirmation it was delivered. I understand why this might be seen as unnecessary, but I still deal with a lot of users who frequently CC/BCC themselves on all emails as well which is similar.  It's a bit redundant, but if it makes them more comfortable/ confident their message was received, I don't have a problem with it.

 

I agree that the new behavior makes sense for most people and should be the default, but I don't think it's unreasonable to ask that we be given the option to return to the previous behaviour if that's what is preferred by the user, especially since that's the way it's been configured for a while now.

Thanks for your feedback. We will evaluate making this option configurable.
Great to know that its clear now.

Regarding your comment about forcing subscriptions to users in a group, you must realize the delivery does not equal reading. It would always be up to the recipient to read their emails! :)

A nifty feature that exists to ensure delivery of group messages to all the members, irrespective of their subscriptions, would be @all and @mentions. Have you tried them?

We were using Office Groups (and advertising them to users) as a direct replacement of distribution lists with extended capabilities. It was the only possibility to keep communication in desktop Outlook 2010 we still had on some PCs. For us it's not a confirmation of sending, but the message we can filter to a folder like a normal distribution list and reply to it. As we are upgrading from the last Office 2010 copies I try to convince users to the new Groups interface, but starting from "Microsoft broke something again" is not making my life easier. 

In short - configuration option would be great. Getting this option FAST would be even better. 

Thanks for your feedback, Tomasz. I understand your concern.

While we evaluate making this option configurable to serve a use case like yours, CC'ing oneself on a message would be a quick workaround to continue using Groups as DLs. Do you think that option can work for you in the near term?