How to find out, whether the interlocutor "has blocked" me or actually is in offline? (Google)

Dave Warren lists at
Tue Jan 27 14:28:25 EST 2009

On Tue, 27 Jan 2009 13:40:36 -0500, Daniel Atallah <datallah at>
was claimed to have wrote:

>2009/1/27 ?????? ???????? <markoff69 at>:
>> !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
>> However about 2 hours ago I find a way for check a status definition
>> "blocked/offline".
>> Unfortunately, not by means of Pidgin.
>> At once I will make a say that is tested only for Google IM.
>> Whether it will work for other services IM (ICQ, AIM), I do not know.
>> So...
>> PSI, one of numerous clients IM (and one of the best like a Pidgin), allows
>> to make it.
>> If the investigated user is really offline, at attempt to refresh it vCard
>> simply will occur nothing.
>> However if this user has blocked you, at attempt to refresh vCard there will
>> be a message
>> "
>> It is impossible to receive the information on this contact.
>> The reason: Service unavailable.
>> The server or recipient does not currently provide the requested service
>> "
>If this is true (and I don't necessarily think it is), then it is a
>bug in the gtalk server.  It should not be possible to distinguish the
>two scenarios.

There are a couple tricks that might work, but none are moderately

"Offline messaging" vs "Off the record" combine together to yield one
possible bug.

If the recipient is truly off-line, you get an error that the message
can't be delivered or off-the-record mode can't be used or something,
but if the recipient is online but invisible, it doesn't return the same

I vaguely recall that the same trick worked for blocked vs off-line, but
this isn't a particular subtle method as the recipient gets messages
about off the record mode.

Alternatively any site claiming to do such a test could be a phishing
scam, there were a couple sites phishing for MSN credentials once upon a
time, they'd claim they needed your username and password to check your
contacts to see if you were blocked or not.

I stand by my initial answer, if you want to know, act like an adult and
ask the person.

More information about the Support mailing list