If you are a Gmail or G Suite user, you are likely not getting my updates (including this one). You are not alone. Google has blocked my domain in its communication products and all messages from me (blog updates, emails, etc.) are going to spam for most users of those products (and “unspamming” or saving my email in the address book are not effective at preventing my messages from going to spam). This started with my emails back in August and has now extended to my blog updates (around mid-September), and the number of complaints I’m getting is increasing.
There are things I can do as a website owner to ensure my domain and the emails I send are not “spammy,” such as making sure the site is updated (I’m having technical difficulties with my theme, so that’s outdated, but the site is otherwise about as updated as possible given the constraints of a shared hosting environment) and my email configuration conforms to standards (it is, I check regularly; but my emails, particularly the newsletters, are often considered spammy given the number of links contained in them – since the links are what make the newsletters useful, there isn’t much I can do about that).
My search results are not yet affected, but that may be next, given how things have progressed.
A quick search online has yielded some interesting information: Google apparently does this to a number of websites, with no explanation (I certainly can’t figure out why), and there is no way to resolve the problem (because Google does not offer technical support for the free products it offers) unless the affected website switches to a paid service with Google (personally, I call that extortion, but that’s just me).
What Google has done is harming my business (my students and followers who email me are not getting my replies in a timely fashion because no one checks spam anymore, thanks to Google – the spam folder is basically hidden and you have to look for it). I have spoken to someone at my congressman’s office (what’s happening to me does not fall under the antitrust investigations happening with the tech giants) and also filed a complaint with the California Office of the Attorney General (my complaint will be “used to develop information about patterns of business activity which might indicate the need for formal investigation or law enforcement action” – in other words, I’ll likely be out of business before anything is done).
The current workaround I have for Gmail users is to set up a filter to funnel all emails from my domain to the inbox (instructions). But that only works for my emails, not the blog updates (those are sent through WordPress). You may need to check your spam folder regularly going forward if you want to see updates from me (might be a good idea to do that anyway; a lot of emails from the UCs end up in spam too).
I had a good run. This has been fun. I’ll keep working until the tide of Google overwhelms me. If I don’t hear from you or you don’t hear from me (because Google highjacked the communication), I wish you well.