From Evernote Hello to Evernote, Hell No!!

Google Chrome


Update #2 by Dan: We reached out to Evernote CEO Phil Libin to bring this to his attention. He let us know that the feature is supposed to be off by default when you add a person manually AND, if you change the settings the app is supposed to remember the settings. Currently it is on by default aND it doesn’t remember changed settings but that is a bug that will be addressed ASAP.

That’s great news. I also hope Evernote will highlight this functionality in the future so people know it is there in the first place.

Update #1 by Judie: Dan just called to tell me that it turns out that there is a “Send my contact info when I meet someone” option that is checked by default, meaning that the app is installed to send the offending introduction email. You must uncheck the box, and thereby OPT OUT, or this app will send an automatic email to the contact. My advice would be “make sure that you check that box!”

I just downloaded it (on my iPad) to see for myself, and I didn’t find any opt-out check box during the set up process, much less any notice anywhere that the app would send an email to anyone. It was only when I went searching after the fact that I found the option inside my personal info in settings.

I can tell you right now that if I met some guy at an event and then got an email from him moments later saying he was pleased to meet me, I would think it was more than a little bit weird. To top matters off, there is the “If you’d like to remember the people you meet, get Evernote Hello” tag at the bottom of the email, which makes the sender look like they wouldn’t be able to keep people straight if it weren’t for the app.

My opinion is that it would be best to collect a business card upon introduction and scan it later, rather than fool with this app.

I ripped on Evernote ‘Hello’ when it was first released over a month ago. The “meet people and get in contact” app from Evernote seemed to me to be completely unnecessary. And when they suggested you give it to a stranger and allow them to take their own picture with your smartphone … umm no!

Well Evernote Hello got updated, and the update post on the Evernote Blogcast even includes CEO Phil Libin discussing the improvements. Quite frankly when Phil goes into explaining why giving the other person your iPhone in order to take a picture “You almost get a photo booth type experience with them smiling”, I had to wonder if some of the explanations were direct responses to our criticisms. Of course they are not, but each (and every) hole we punched in the app WAS addressed.

The good news is that the update actually makes a crApp potentially useful. So I went to use it and guess what? This is still NOT an app I want on my iPhone, and you probably don’t either. Why? Because it does something I didn’t know about, I don’t want, and something they don’t mention!

Google Chrome

They now let you add someone to the database by using their contact information. That’s great, and I was excited to try the feature. I manually added Judie ,and not five minutes later I got this email from her …

Inbox 26004 messages 3915 unread

Yes, the app automatically sent Judie my information with a “nice to meet you” message! I explained what happened and she replied, “I had no idea that ugly email from you was automatically sent without your approval. RUDE!!!” Rude is, in my opinion, an understatement.

Yes, this functionality is not cool, because I didn’t WANT it to do that, and even worse — it didn’t tell me it was going to do that! And if she had not let me know (right away, thank goodness), then I might have manually added a bunch of people and, unwittingly, spammed them in the process. And, worse, yet, if, like me, you use multiple email addresses it does not appear that you can control which address is used.

Hello Evernote, you have an issue here, and you need to fix it right now!!

Until they do, Evernote Hello — which has the potential to be useful — is still actually Evernote, Hell No!

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About the Author

Dan Cohen
Having a father who was heavily involved in early laser and fiber-optical research, Dan grew up surrounded by technology and gadgets. Dan’s father brought home one of the very first video games when he was young and Dan remembers seeing a “pre-release” touchtone phone. (When he asked his father what the “#” and “*” buttons were his dad said, “Some day, far in the future, we’ll have some use for them.”) Technology seemed to be in Dan’s blood but at some point he took a different path and ended up in the clergy. His passion for technology and gadgets never left him. Dan is married to Raina Goldberg who is also an avid user of Apple products. They live in New Jersey with their golden doodle Nava.