Hey Gmail Users,
We’ve been getting feedback from many Gmail users that images no longer appear, or only partially appear, in the emails we send out with product announcements. Yes, it’s driving us crazy, too.

And… it is a Gmail problem.

Google recently took it upon themselves to insert a proxy for html-embedded images in between you and us. They are rewriting the URLs to their own servers and temporarily hosting our images in a cache. Evidently the point is to improve your privacy by preventing us from being able to track your reading our emails (which we don’t do anyway).

So, if you’re a Gmail user and try to open a broken image in one of our marketing mails, you’ll randomly get a 500 Server Error for googleusercontent.com, although sometimes it works. It’s completely ridiculous. I am currently active in several Google Forums threads trying to get this resolved. They done really screwed up bad, and barely anyone is listening over there.

We will make sure any images that are in our emails appear somewhere here in The Stuff so that you can see what’s going on at Nakatomi, even if Gmail doesn’t want you to.

Sorry for the inconvenience. Hopefully someone at Google will wake up to what this is doing to businesses that use this revolutionary technology called “email” for marketing.

More info: Google Blog: Images Now Showing (really should read “Images Not Showing”)
More info: Ars Technica: Gmail Blows Up Email Marketing
More info: Adotas: Google Cashing in on Gmail Caching

Biafrah Winfrey

Cheef Technology Officer
Nakatomi, Inc