I upgraded to the new Google Calendar and it’s great, except now I’m not getting email when someone invites me to an event. How can I turn that back on or re-enable it?
Google launched a spiffy new redesigned Calendar system for 2018 [check out my Intro to Google Calendar 2018] and there’s lots to love about open layout and bright, cheery color scheme. There are, however, some settings and configuration options that are a bit inexplicable. Seems like all the big services just have a hard time figuring out how we users actually want to manage our privacy and what we choose to share and manage and what we don’t. I’m wondering when Google will start offering privacy wizards or other software utilities – with or without the new buzzword “AI” – to help us manage it all across Gmail, Calendar, Docs, and similar.
There’s a saying in the engineering world about “the next bench”, and I’m pretty sure it originated at Hewlett-Packard: It’s the idea that engineers, hardware designers and software developers should basically focus on building things that they want and need. You know, avid skiers designing skis, pro swimmers designing swim trunks, race car drivers working on vehicle design, and so on. Which works as long as your target audience is, well, yourself. When it isn’t – like the millions of non-Google fans and users of Google tools – it can be more than a bit problematic.
But… let’s get back to topic, shall we? To enable email alerts for invitations in Google Calendar, your first thought might be that’s something that can be specified when the event is created in the new Calendar design. When I add Christian to my new event, however, you can see that there are precious few options:
In fact, clicking on the tiny silhouette means that they’re an optional attendee and “X” of course chops ’em off the list.
Hmm. Okay. So perhaps in Settings? That’s accessible from the gear icon:
Chose “Settings” and you’re getting warmer, but rather surprisingly none of these actually offer the email alert setting you seek:
Go a bit further down on that left side, however, and you’ll see a list of your calendars. Click on your main calendar and… voila! a set of options appear that include the option you seek:
As highlighted, you want to choose “Event notifications” here and you’ll find that there are a variety of different events that can then send you an email as desired:
You’ll notice that “New events” was set to None on my Google Calendar settings. That’s the problem. Change that to Email on yours and you should get email invitations for events just like the good old days!