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Google has done a great job of making Gmail an easy-to-use email service, but one thing that has always bothered me is the fact that they automatically add people you email to your contact list. It might not be such a bad thing for your personal email accounts because the chances are pretty good that you’re only emailing people who you contact often, but when it comes to business accounts this kind of behavior can get rather annoying.

Luckily Google has finally come up with a solution that will please both those who like the behavior and those that don’t. What they do now is move everyone that you email or reply to into a “Suggested Contacts” group, which you can view in the contacts manager. From there you can move any contacts to your more permanent contact list.

Don’t worry, any contacts that show up under the Suggested Contacts will still be accessible by typing any part of their name or email address in the “to” field of a new email. That means you’ll never really notice a difference in the behavior unless you are managing your contacts.

By default Google will move frequently emailed contacts into your “My Contacts,” but this too can be disabled. To change this preference click on the “My Contacts” section in the contact manager, and you should see the setting appear where your contact details are normally shown. Unchecking the “Automatically move suggested contacts…” box prevents Gmail from ever adding contacts without your consent.

Gmail Homepage [via Google Operating System]