tomasz buchert's page

Tagging unreplied messages with notmuch

Some people are very bad at responding to e-mails. Or they don’t check their mailbox as often as I do, who knows. Anyway, sometimes I want to ping somebody about an e-mail that I sent some time ago. Till now, I did it by going through a list of my sent e-mails and resending messages that were unreplied. However, that was somewhat inefficient.

As a solution, I coded a post-new hook for notmuch that tags all unreplied messages. The implementation is rather short and straightforward (see GitHub repo). It marks all replied messages with response and everything else with noresponse. The precise definition of replied message is: a message whose ID is mentioned in at least one In-Reply-To header in your mailbox.

To solve my initial problem, I also tag my sent, but unreplied messages with noack so that I can easily obtain the list of people to ping eventually. I also have the backlog tag which groups e-mails sent to me and which I haven’t replied yet.

Feel free to use it if you find it useful.

inspired by classicthesis / 2021