Press Release: Boxbe introduces social utility for Yahoo! Mail, Outlook and Gmail

November 29th, 2007 by

Email nods to social networking with ‘Email by invitation’

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – November 29, 2007: Boxbe, a company that lets consumers regain control of their incoming email, today announced a social utility for email. Boxbe’s free service gives the millions of users of Yahoo! Mail, Microsoft Outlook and Gmail the ability to protect and ensure the delivery of messages from friends, family, co-workers and even entire domains, such as: amazon.com, americanexpress.com or yourfamilyname.com. With the release of Boxbe’s new service, users of Yahoo! Mail, Outlook and Gmail can now create an ‘email guest list’, which ensures that they receive messages only from those people who matter to them.

“Going beyond Email 2.0 Boxbe’s guest list makes email more like instant messaging or social networking: People who want to reach you must first get your permission,” said Thede Loder, co-founder and president of Boxbe. “Boxbe allows you to treat your friends’ email with the respect it deserves, and reject any message that tries to invade your inbox without an invitation from you.”

In the same way that social networks require users to accept friends to share profiles and exchange messages, the Boxbe guest list allows users to control which messages can get through and which need permission. Setting up a guest list is simple:

  • The system imports the addresses you already have saved and allows you to select those you want to accept messages from
  • anyone not on the guest list who sends you a message receives an invitation to join your guest list, and remains on a waiting list until you verify the message and approve the sender.

This process stops spammers and brings order back to email. Unverified messages are not arbitrarily blocked or deleted; they are simply held in a waiting list where they can be viewed or forwarded at anytime. Consumers can also choose which businesses can reach them by name or by category; they can specify with total privacy which marketers can reach them and what products they are interested in.

According to a research report released by the Pew Internet & American Life Project, more than half of email users (55 percent) say they have lost trust in email because of spam.

“Email is such an essential tool we use in all areas of our lives, personal and professional, yet it has not kept pace with the way that people communicate these days,” continued Loder. “We are committed to working with companies like Yahoo, Microsoft and Google to restore people’s faith in email by screening out unwanted messages and letting in those that matter.”

Boxbe is able to offer this innovative service in part due to the “opening-up” of some of the industry’s leading e-mail services. For example, in March 2007, Yahoo! announced the opening of its Yahoo! Mail Web Services, a multi-tiered set of open Web services that allow developers to build software and services around the world’s No. 1 Web mail platform.

“I invested in Boxbe because they have created an innovative service that makes email usable again. Consumers have always had to deal with inboxes that are clogged with irrelevant information. With Boxbe, now they can focus only on those emails which really matter, from those people who really matter to them,” said Esther Dyson, Boxbe investor and board member.

Boxbe is backed by leading investors: Draper Fisher Jurvetson, the original investor in: Hotmail (acquired by MSFT), Skype (acquired by EBAY), Baidu (BIDU), and Overture (acquired by YHOO), among many others; and Esther Dyson, an influential commentator on the impact of emerging technologies and markets, and an investor in Flickr (acquired by Yahoo!), Medstory (acquired by Microsoft), Brightmail (acquired by Symantec) and Postini (acquired by Google).

About Boxbe
Boxbe lets you easily create an email guest list that ensures you receive messages from people and companies that matter to you. Boxbe is completely free, and takes only a few minutes to set up. Boxbe’s free service works with most popular email products and services, including Yahoo! Mail, Microsoft Outlook and Gmail. Boxbe is a privately held company, headquartered in San Francisco, CA and online at: www.boxbe.com.

Media inquiries
Andrea Heuer
Consort Partners
boxbe@consortpartners.com
Tel: +1 (917) 886-5113