Help!!!! GMail Unblocked All My Blocked Contacts


Well, thanks to my GMail chat settings changing at random, I have a sizeable number of blocked contacts. And all of a sudden today, ALL my blocked contacts came unblocked.

It didn’t seem like a random mistake I might have made…. I don’t even touch those settings.

My account has not been hacked. My account saw activity only from the computer I was logged on.

Why does this happen?

Rather, why does this happen only to me?

Or does it…. Has anyone else undergone the same thing? Did it recur?

Folks who designed/implemented GMail, any answers? What can I do to solve this?

And a humble request to folks reading this… pass this post along, share this post… please do something such that it comes to the notice of someone who can help.

About wanderlust

just your average books-and-music person who wants to change the world.
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12 Responses to Help!!!! GMail Unblocked All My Blocked Contacts

  1. karthik says:

    Can’t see why that would happen, but I have a tangential query.

    In about five years of Gmail usage, I’ve never had to block a single address. (Of course, I’ve made ample use of the “mark as spam” button.)

    So, assuming unwisely that the list of blocked addresses is short, you could just block them again, yes? As a temporary fix.

  2. wanderlust says:

    I did that, yes. (obviously!). Not even two minutes of time-lag between when it came unblocked and when i re-blocked.
    but heck, can i keep doing that all the darned time? will i always be jobless enough to monitor my contact list?
    I want a permanent solution.

  3. wanderlust says:

    The worst part is, there’s no way to directly contact gmail support. you have to post on the googlegroup, which gives you idiotic solutions like “change your password”. That clearly doesn’t work for me.

  4. JarrW says:

    Also you can try to comment on Gmail Blog, they may answer your questions there. And if not: Share it on social networks. Hopefully someone will pick up on it and help you out.

    Best of luck.

  5. Shreevatsa says:

    Turn off chat in the Gmail interface, and use a better client for your Google Talk IM πŸ™‚
    [Pidgin, for example, can keep its own blocking list…]

    Why do you need to block people, anyway? Do you have so many creepy contacts who won’t leave you alone? πŸ™‚

  6. wanderlust says:

    @shreevatsa:
    i don’t want a workaround. i want everything to work perfectly. everything, irrespective of what client i use or how often i shift between them (which is pretty often). and heck, it’s nice to point out bugs… that’s the whole point of a beta release anyway.
    as for my blocked list, check the previous post on gmail quirks which’ll tell you why at all i have blocked contacts.

  7. Shreevatsa says:

    Well yes, we all want things to work perfectly πŸ™‚ But the fact is that all IM networks and protocols suck, and XMPP just happens to be the least crazy (although Google’s implementation of it is broken in several subtle ways).
    Google is not alone in their closedness; it is just as hard to get bugs fixed in Yahoo or MSN. This seems inevitable in all proprietary systems, which is why so many people have learnt to mistrust anything not fully open. If we choose to use them anyway, we must look out for ourselves on our own. It seems you are not so pessimistic and still expect to get Google to fix things πŸ™‚

    Anyway, that said… it might still be possible to debug this. Things like this don’t just happen (well they do, but it’s more inconvenient for us to cope with that, so let’s assume these things are deterministic), so the first thing you should do is change your password πŸ™‚ [AFAIK the Google logs only show *email* access, not chat access.] Then once you’re sure, you can probably figure out which of your clients is causing it — my guess is that one of your clients is turning on the “Authorize everyone” bit when it connects. Try looking at the detailed log using one of those full-fledged XMPP clients… also you could get someone who is not already a contact of yours to add/talk to you and see what that generates.

    BTW I read the previous post and I still don’t see the problem with simply letting random people be on your chat list — I have a few people added long ago but whom I don’t even know, but they never bother me so I’ve never bothered blocking them πŸ™‚

  8. wanderlust says:

    password: changed. nothing helped. and… the logs show access to both chat and mail… pidgin and gtalk too.
    it’s happened on pidgin, gtalk and gmail chat. there seems to be no pattern to it.
    i don’t like a really long chat list. and… gtalk is sort of a personal-ish space to me… to each his own there.
    whatever the reasons might be, i don’t like deviations from expected behaviour in software.

  9. Amanda Green says:

    man that happened to me too!
    yesterday all my gmail blocked contacts became unblocked!
    I had read that pidgin has a bug and can soemtimes unblock all your contacts, I had seen that happen with my hotmail meesenger acount. But never with gmail.
    Maybe its a similar bug :-/
    Although I had been using my gmail account for over 2 weeks and had not experienced this.
    what do u guys think?

    • wanderlust says:

      my problem was blocked contacts getting unblocked, not the other way ’round… and this was happening even before google+ was designed. it hasn’t recurred in a couple of years, though… guess things are fine.

  10. One of mine keeps going back and forth between blocked and unblocked!!! It’ so frustrating. We are trying to have a conversation and I have to go unblock him again and again. Help!

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