What Happens if You Block Someone on Gchat & Do They Appear Offline?

By David Nield

Google Chat ties into several products and services offered by Google.
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Google Chat is the instant messaging service built into Google services such as Google Plus and Gmail. By default, Gchat lists all the Google Contacts you have previously confirmed. Blocking a contact on Google Chat prevents him from initiating a real-time instant message conversation with you or from seeing your online status, though he can still send you an email message.

How Blocking Contacts Works

People in your Google Contacts list must be manually added to your Google Chat list; you can do this by inviting them from within a Google Chat module (in Gmail, Orkut or Google Plus). This enables them to see your online/offline status and send you real-time instant messages. Blocking a contact revokes these privileges – blocked contacts are no longer able to initiate a conversation or see when you are online. Your name always appears offline in their Google Chat window, but there is no notification that you have blocked them.

Blocking a Contact

Contacts can be found in your Google Chat list by typing the first few letters of the name in the search box at the top. Click the relevant name to open a chat window, then open the "More" drop-down menu. Choose the "Block" option from the list to block the contact and remove the name from your chat list. It can still be found by searching if you wish to unblock the contact at a later stage.

Unblocking a Contact

You can unblock a contact by opening a chat window with the person in question and clicking on the "Unblock" option in the chat window. The same option is available in the "More" drop-down menu. As blocked contacts don't appear in your chat list, you must use the search box at the top of the list to find the relevant contact.

Working Across Google Services

Google Contacts are synced across several services including Google Chat, Google Reader, and Google Plus. Blocking a contact from the Google Plus interface blocks them across all other Google services and properties at the same time. Blocking a contact from the Google Chat module in Gmail only blocks them in Google Chat – they will still be able to see the content you share on Google Plus if they are in your contact circles.