A friend blocks you on AIM and you know about it. What do you do?

Could she be trying to find out if you (and possibly others) have two logins? By selective blocking you can see who notices, and work out if they noticed through having a second account.

I block almost everyone on my various IM programs, and it’s nothing at all personal to the people who are blocked. Sometimes I just don’t have time to talk; sometimes I want to talk to one specific person for whatever reason, so I don’t log off, but I block everyone else. For me, the default is blocked - if you see me online, it means I’ve unblocked you (and whoever else) because I’m free to talk.

Especially on MSN Instant Messenger, who doesn’t let you appear offline and still IM with people.

If anyone confronted me about being blocked, well, one I would find it a little shifty that they had a second ID that they had added me to, but hadn’t told me about. Fine if you want to have a second ID - I have several of my own. But if you’re adding me to that buddy list, and not using that ID to communicate with me, then it looks an awful lot to me like you’re “spying” on me.

Poll results:
Talk to her about it: 1
Don’t talk to her about it: 11
(it may make you look like a stalker: 3)
Talk to her about it if it becomes a problem down the road: 1

Thanks for all of the feedback. At first, the responses were pretty much mixed, but now it’s pretty clear which way the momentum has shifted. I just won’t talk to her about it. If she ever decides to unblock me, cool, and I’ll wait for her to IM me (or maybe a few weeks if she doesn’t). One of the things that life has taught me is that when one of your friends starts to pull back, you pull back even further. It’ll give them the gift of missing you and will leave them wanting more. I just forgot that because I posted this when I was in shock.

Welcome to the board, ShivaRox. I would think that creating another screen name for that purpose would be preferable, because it’s less work in the long run not to have to shuffle around screen names every time you sign on.

The one I talk to her on is the one that I use to talk to close friends. That one is almost always running. The other one, used to talk to college buddies, runs less often. I suppose I could give her the other screen name, but there’d really be no need for her to contact me on it.

I should take the time to explain something here. She lives in my hometown. I go to college away from home, but have a co-op job in my hometown. So basically, when I’m at my co-op job every other semster, I hang out with her and go to parties with her pretty much every weekend. When I’m at college, we chat online and I just see her when I go home for the weekend.

When I posted the original message, I took her pseudo-signoff as a kick in the balls for two reasons. One, I wasn’t exactly in the greatest mood, since I had just gotten done studying late for an exam (as you can see, it was 2:27 a.m. that I posted). Two, I had just come back to school after having gone home for the weekend. So going from seeing her to not even being able to chat with her on the Internet was an abrupt transition.

You’re probably right with regard to the fact that confronting her would make me appear a melodramatic, Internet stalker, jackass. And the fact that I just happen to be male and she just happens to be female would probably strengthen that stalker vibe. I could go into a spiel right now about how male-female friendships can exist but can never be 100% like same-sex friendships, but that will have to wait another day for Great Debates. As for it making me look like I read between the lines too much, well, she already knows that I do too much of that in life anyway.

Your suggestion that I’m into her and frequently check her “Buddy Info” and “Away” messages for updates on her activities is off the mark. Now go reduce a different poster. That’s not to say that whenever I’m bored, I don’t compulsively check people’s buddy info and away messages. But I do that to everyone equally.


Right. I’ve only been blocked for, what, (checks watch) 12 hours now? If I ever really need to talk to her, which I don’t now, I’ll call her. And if I’m blocked for an extended period of time or more frequently, it’ll probably be for deeper reasons and I’ll try to work on those instead. I’m not mad about the fact that she blocked me, necessarily. I’m just mad about the fact that I happened to catch her doing it, completely by accident, and can’t say anything about it.

For those who don’t know, DeadAIM is just like AOL instant messenger, except it allows you to “Clone AIM” and run more than one screen name at once on the same computer. It also has other perks, like a wider variety of emoticons.

Ah. I have Sametime at work and I make myself “unavailable” whenever I don’t want to be interrupted. No insult is intended. If you are in constant contact with this woman IRL then she obviously likes your company.

I used to have a problem with people getting pissy when I didn’t respond to IMs in what they considered to be a timely manner. I think part of it is that I tend to use IM more like email that might be more immediate. If I feel like having a conversation, then great. We can talk now. But if not, I might send you a response in a few hours or a day. But most people expect it to be like a telephone call that requires a quick response. The worst thought that pestering me would lead to a quicker response.

My solution was to set my chat client to never set me away or idle, and then just ignore messages that I didn’t feel like answering right away. Since no one could ever tell if I was at my computer by the messages, it was equally likely that I just wasn’t there to see it. When people complained about that, I told them exactly why I had done so, and it generally shut them up pretty quickly.

This girl just has a different way of dealing with not wanting a particular conversation right then.

Also, if you like DeadAIM, check out AIMutation, which is a free open source program with the same functionality.

Hey, buddy, I’m not trying to reduce you, so chill out. In other words, don’t take shit personally. If anything, my response was intended to jerk you from the realm of mopiness into one of detachment and indifference about the subject. If your friend and you are as close as you say, then casually bring the blocking situation up: *(phone call) Hey, friend, how’s it going? I’ve been missing you online recently, just wanted to make sure you’re alright. * OR Damn, you must be swamped with school/work/etc. because I never see you online anymore.

See, it’s that easy, and you won’t leave a bad stalker after-taste. But on a side note, treading with caution if I measure your response correctly, could it be that you’re exhausting her with your mopiness? Do you treat her like the best friend/therapist/shoulder to lean on? If so, stop. She might be getting sick of it. creeping away every so delicately
Oh, and thanks for the warm welcome, dude! ;j