This week, we’re taking a look at the basics of Gmail.

Monday, we took a quick tour of the inbox. Click here to read that tip.

On Tuesday, we learned the basics of composing a message. Click here to read that tip.

Today, let’s explore reading and responding to messages.  To open a message, just click on it in the inbox.

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For basic tasks like printing and forwarding look at the right corner of the open message. To print, click the printer icon. To open the message in a new window, click the arrow inside the square. Clicking the star icon will mark your message as important.

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To forward the message, click the arrow icon next to the star.

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For more options, click the three-dot icon next to the arrow. You’ll see options to forward, print, create a filter, add the sender to your contacts list, block the sender, report it as spam, or even download a copy of the message. It’s pretty much a one-stop-shop for the most common actions you’ll take regarding an email.

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At the top of the message, you’ll see a row of icons.

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To learn what an icon does, try hovering your mouse over it to view the label.

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Let’s learn about your options for the message.  At the far left is Archive. This is for messages you don’t want to keep hanging around your inbox, but might need o access someday.  Next to that is the icon for marking something as Spam.  It looks like a stop sign with an exclamation point inside. And next to that, is a trash can, which is pretty much the universal symbol for Delete.

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Your next two options are to mark as unread (the double envelope icon) or to snooze the message.

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If you choose to snooze a message, you can pick a time where you’ll be reminded to attend to it again.

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Your next options are the folder with the arrow inside. That will allow you to move your message to a different label (folder.)  Click the label icon next to it to assign a label (file folder) to your message or to create a new label.

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Click on the three-dot more icon for additional options like marking as important or unread, adding a star, or creating an event or task. We’ll get more into how to handle that in a future tip.

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