Are you slightly annoyed when you write a quick informal email and your email client says: “Your message doesn’t have a subject”? If you are in the email-client-writing business, perhaps this article can show you an alternative way to send emails without a subject.

Send email without subject.

What’s the problem?

Suppose you are writing a quick message and skip the subject like this:

no subject

Sometimes it just does not make sense to add a subject to a trivial email. But every email client I tried in the last 20 years will pop up something like this:

annoying popup

An email subject might be helpful but why does it have to be mandatory? Look at how gmail even makes a missing subject no big deal by just displaying a portion of the email body:


Anyway, I understand it might be helpful to enter a subject. So…

How can we send an email without a modal dialog to warn about a missing subject?

What we need is a clear way to inform the user that he or she is about to send an email with or without a subject. And why not just show it as plain text like this:

missing subject

Now the user is informed and can still send the email with one mouse click. Or the user may add a subject. And if he or she does, we change the text on the button to “Send”:

with subject

That way we can ban yet another modal dialog once and for all!

ban modal dialogs

Written by Loek van den Ouweland on 2016-05-02.
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