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block list examples

Current real world block list examples. Part of the effort to enable greater social network portability.


The following applications/services have a block or ignore feature.


Adium is a client side open source instant messaging (IM) application for MacOSX.

In the "Contact" menu, there is a "Block..." menu item that is enabled whenever a contact is selected or a chat window is frontmost. Selecting it brings up a confirmation box asking: "Are you sure you want to block USERNAME?" with buttons (Cancel) and ((Block)) where "USERNAME" is the IM address being blocked.

When blocked, in either (both if applicable) the "Contact List" window and/or in the chat window, the status indicator next to the USERNAME turns into a grey disc/oval/talkballoon with a red "x" set just inside its edge.

When such a contact/chat window is selected, the abovementioned menu item changes to "Unblock..." and when selected brings up a confirmation box asking: "Are you sure you want to unblock USERNAME?" with buttons (Cancel) and ((Unblock)).


Dodgeball is a social network location presence service.

On your my profile page (logged in version), on the right hand column there is a section with the heading and message:

friends you are NOT sending messages to

These people will not receive messages from you when you check-in. To add or remove people from this list, click manage friends.

Below the message it lists the people that are in your dodgeball "block list" though they never call it that.

The text "manage friends" is a link to your manage friends page (logged in version) which lists more explanatory / descriptive text, followed by two equal width columns of friend icons. The left column with heading send & receive messages from these people has icons of those that you are NOT blocking, and the right column with heading don't send or receive messages from these people has icons of those that you are blocking. Clicking on an icon in either column moves the icon to the other column.

Only once in the descriptive text is the word "block" used, in this sentence:

Regardless of whether you choose to send to these people or block them, you will still appear as their friend on their profile page.

There is a separate option mentioned in the text to "delete" a friend, where it states:

If you want to delete friends for good, click here. Just remember that if you delete someone, (a) you can't "un-do" it and (b) they can see that you've deleted them.

Dodgeball's block list is quite different from the others here in that it is for only blocking people that you have explicitly added to your friends list on Dodgeball, whereas all other blocking examples are for blocking arbitrary people on the system.


Flickr photo hosting community.

"block this user" link when viewing a user's profile.

block list UI

In the "Contacts" menu, choose "Contact List" which will load the page located at (substituting "username" for your own)

Click the "Your Block List" link near the bottom of the page, which will load the page located at (substituting "username" for your own)

Note the table of contacts.

Lastfm social music listening site.

In the Privacy Controls, near the bottom there is a section for:

Ignore List

with an "Add username" form field and a "Add to list" button.


MySpace social networking site.

block_1.gif (Block User) link when viewing a user's profile.


Twitter simple updates community.

"block ((username))" link when viewing a user's profile, just under their friends list.

Yahoo Messenger

Yahoo! Messenger is a client side instant messaging (IM) application for MacOSX and other platforms.

In the Privacy panel of the Preferences window (accessible from the Preferences... menu item of the first menu Yahoo! Messenger, or Privacy Options from the Profile menu), there is an "Ignore List" tab. Clicking it shows text stating:

Add an ID to your Ignore List to block all messages from that person

with two radio button options:

( ) Ignore anyone who is not on my Messenger List
(*) Ignore only the people below

followed by a text entry/search box for IDs, and a list below it of IDs that have been explicitly blocked.

The default option is "(*) Ignore only the people below" and thus that is shown as selected. As some Yahoo! Messenger users have been experiencing IM spam (screenshot of blocked spammers forthcoming), you may wish to consider changing your setting to "(*) Ignore anyone who is not on my Messenger List".



Verbs or actions in user interfaces that implement blocking/ignoring.

  • block is used by Adium, Flickr, MySpace, and Twitter
  • ignore is used by Yahoo Messenger and /ignore is the IRC command to block messages from a nickname on a server in all channels.
  • Remove block? is used by Flickr on your block list page.
    • on the profile page of a person that is block it says: "You're blocking ((username)). Undo?" where "Undo" is hyperlinked to a page that confirms the unblock.
  • unblock is used by Adium, Twitter.


Nouns used in link text, URLs etc. in user interfaces that implement blocking/ignoring.

  • block list is used by Flickr in the "Your Block List" hyperlink to the list of people you have blocked, see the bottom of your user contacts page, i.e. where username is your "pretty URL" username on Flickr.
  • ignore list is used by Yahoo Messenger.

see also