Every Webmail service has spam filters that do a reasonable job, but what do you do about unwanted messages that aren’t really spam? Such messages might be newsletters you had to sign up for to join a Web site or register for a special offer or mailing lists you can’t unsubscribe from. “[Such messages are] legitimate email,” Chris Jones, a Microsoft vice president, said. “But you no longer want it and it’s haunting your inbox.”
Instead of going back to the Web site or digging through the mailing list instructions, we hit delete every time or we mark it as spam. However, marking real email as spam makes it harder for the system to find real spam and deleting it just postpones the problem. In fact, Jones said the figures on Hotmail indicate that “people spend more time deleting message than reading messages.”
Gmail has a "Filter messages like these" option under More Actions but that takes you through all the steps of building a rule by hand. With the new version of Hotmail, you just click the Sweep menu and choose "Delete all from…" then make sure you tick the box marked "Also move future messages" and they simply vanish. It took five minutes to clean up a Hotmail account that we’d abandoned two years ago because of the numerous mailing lists and newsletters that clogged up all the real mail. After we completed the task, none of them have since reappeared. If you want to keep getting the messages without having them fill up the inbox, use "Move all from…" and send them to a folder. It’s much faster than setting up a filter to get the same results in Gmail.
Don’t want to get these emails any more? Sweep gets rid of all messages from this mailing list and any that might have otherwise arrived in the future.
Use Sweep, which is very simple, to move messages you want to read but wish to move from your inbox.
You can do the same thing in Gmail manually, but more clicks are required.