How To Tell if Someone Blocked you from Sending Text Messages
Most of our communication in 2021 comes through texting, whether you’re using basic SMS or a more advanced client like WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger. Whether you’re chatting with your friends in a group chat or updating your parents on your new job, texting is an easier and more straightforward form of communication than placing a phone call.
Of course, you may run into a situation where you’re forced to block a number you don’t want texting you, or you begin to wonder if someone has blocked you when they stop replying to your texts. Each phone is different, but there is a comprehensive guide on number blocking available.
Navigating the wide range of social norms and changing habits of friends and contacts is a never-ending process. The speed at which social media has allowed us to change habits, methods of communication, and what annoys or pleases us is simply amazing. If you’re able to keep up with it all, you’re in the minority. If you occasionally find yourself puzzled at what’s going on in the world, you’re not alone.
We all know you can block someone’s number from calling and texting you, but can you tell if someone blocked you from just texting them?
You definitely aren’t the first person to wonder this. Let’s take a look at whether or not you can tell if someone blocked you from sending them text messages.
Can You Tell if Someone Blocked Your Texts?
First and foremost, can you tell if someone blocks you from sending texts?
Unfortunately, if you use standard SMS on your phone, you’ll never get an alert that you’ve been blocked. As par for the course in the digital age, there aren’t any apps (that we know of) that send a bright flashing message that says “You’ve been blocked.” There are some tale-tell signs that the recipient has blocked your phone number of course.
If someone is not responding to your texts, there are a few things you can try to confirm whether you’ve been blocked or not. Keep in mind that blocking a cell phone number acts very similar to having your phone number disconnected or changed. Your friend or contact may have simply updated their number and forgot to let you know.
Also, it isn’t possible to block texts without blocking the phone calls as well. If you can call someone but your messages are ‘Undelivered’ then there’s another issue (but the good news is they didn’t block your number).
Let’s take a look at the signs you’re blocked.
- Depending on the circumstances of the last conversation – This may be obvious but if your contact said something like “I’m blocking you!” and now you aren’t able to get them to respond to your texts; you’ve probably been blocked.
- You can’t see their social media pages – Before you get upset, check their social media pages. If you don’t find their profile on Facebook, Instagram, or others they frequent; they’ve blocked you. When someone goes through the process of blocking another person, they’re likely to block them on all forms of communication
- You can get through by using another person’s phone number – Try calling the individual from a different number. If there’s an error message, it’s likely the phone is disconnected. If the call goes through just fine; you’ve been blocked.
- The Read Receipts – This works for iPhones and newer Androids. Assuming the contact has read receipts turned on, you can easily determine if you’ve been blocked by the message receipts.
There are a lot of reasons to suspect that someone has blocked your texts if you aren’t able to get through. Understanding the items listed above is a great start.
Technology isn’t perfect. Someone could be completely out of the network or service area. Try some troubleshooting before making conclusions. There are a lot of reasons your texts may not go through.
- iPhone Users – iPhones have the oh so nifty iMessage feature. If you’re not getting through to an Android, check to ensure that SMS is turned on in Settings. If your phone is sending an iMessage to an Android, it simply won’t go through
- Android Users – If you’ve previously had an iPhone and upgraded to an Android, disconnect your phone number from iMessage. The system may be confused about your OS change causing missed text messages between users
- Check the Contact – Go to your contacts and make sure the number includes the area code. Then try the message again.
- ScreenTime – If someone is receiving your calls, but not your texts on an iPhone it’s likely due to ScreenTime. This nifty feature means you can set up times your phone’s messaging system works. If you can’t text a friend, they may have ScreenTime set up.
If you call the number and hear a ‘number unobtainable’ message, you may have been blocked, but it could also be a network error. The exact message differs depending on the network but it might be something like, “Sorry, the number has not been completed as dialed.” Some network glitches have made it so Sprint users couldn’t connect with Verizon users and so forth. Call your carrier, try calling another contact who uses the same carrier, or wait a few days.
If you’re still able to call other numbers like normal but aren’t able to connect with one person, you might have been blocked.
Text Messaging vs. Chat Apps
Cell networks are not configured to report back to the sender when delivering SMS. The data layer was added to the legacy voice layer when mobile devices first began demanding data as well as voice. Cell networks were never designed for the kind of feedback necessary to allow you to know if your message was delivered or not.
When sending a text message, you compose and send the message on your phone, the phone OS packages it up so the cell network can understand it, and then the message is sent. The closest receiving cell tower acknowledges your message and adds a mark to your account to keep track of how many SMS you have sent for billing. That is the only feedback mechanism currently available in the cell network.
Purpose-built messaging networks such as iMessage, WhatsApp, and Telegram do things differently. They had the advantage of a clear plan before building their network and ‘feedback to sender’ was one of the key elements they all wanted to include.
Cell networks evolved whereas chat networks could be built from the ground up with the primary vision in mind. That’s why you see ‘Delivered’ or ‘Read’ when you send messages using these apps. It’s also why third-party chat apps tend to offer more features and a better experience than factory-installed SMS messaging apps.
You may use the data network of your cell company but the messaging is controlled by the servers owned by the chat app.
How Does Blocking Work on Phones?
You only have a few options to find out if someone blocked you from texting them. You could try messaging them through WhatsApp, iMessage, Telegram, Snapchat, Facebook, or one of the numerous other applications that use your phone number to enable communication.
Message the person on a different medium to see if they answer. If you see a ‘Delivered’ message or equivalent but get no reply, it’s a sign that they’re ignoring you.
The person who blocked you has no idea the communication was ever attempted. Newer phones make it so easy to block someone that all you have to do is click on the contact or phone number and hit “Block Caller.”
Frequently Asked Questions
Not knowing whether you’ve been blocked or not can be incredibly uncomfortable. If you have more questions, we’ve included some more answers here!
Will someone see my number or texts in a group text if blocked?
If you’re using SMS or even iMessage and you’re in a group with someone who you’ve blocked or has blocked you then no. You won’t see their number nor will you see the messages they send.
Is there a way to send a message to a blocked recipient?
There are plenty of ways to get a message to someone even if you’ve been blocked, but not from your phone number. You can change your phone number, use a third-party texting app, or send them a message on a social media platform.
Can I *67 a text message?
Based on our tests in 2021, we used multiple phones on multiple carriers to send *67 text messages and each time received a notification that the phone number was invalid.
However, this could be due to restrictions on spamming other people’s phone numbers so it may be possible and there’s no harm in trying it. Simply open a brand new text and dial the number with *67 at the beginning. Your phone will send you