What Does “Message Blocking Is Active” Mean And How To Fix

In this article, we'll discuss what "Message blocking is active" is and also walk you through the solutions

Did you receive a notification on your phone saying “Message Blocking Is Active” while trying to send a text? Or maybe someone falsely assumed you had blocked them, and got upset with you because they got the same notification?

Many users have seen the “free msg: unable to send message – message blocking is active.” error a couple of times, and this could get tiring, especially when we need to send an urgent message. And the fact that text messaging is a very vital part of our communication every day, any issues with getting information across in a short time could be heartbreaking.

In this article, we’ll discuss message blocking is active is and also walk you through the solutions.

What Does “Message Blocking is Active” Mean?

When “message blocking is active” displays when you attempt to send a message on your phone (Android, iPhone & T-Mobile)This is one of the commonest reasons for message blocking is active notification popping up. It’s essentially when either the sender or the receiver is a part of the blocked contacts lists of each other. You could try to verify this by contacting each other and see if the call goes through or not. Parental controls might also be inadvertently enabled in some cases. it means that you have blocked your phone from sending messages to the contact or the recipient has added your phone number to block or blacklist.

Why is message blocking active?

Here’s a list of the possible reasons why the “message blocking is active” notification might show up.


This is one of the commonest reasons for message blocking is active notification popping up. It’s essentially when either the sender or the receiver is a part of the blocked contacts lists of each other. You could try to verify this by contacting each other and see if the call goes through or not. Parental controls might also be inadvertently enabled in some cases. 

Service outage

The “free msg: unable to send message – message blocking is active.” error message could mean you have a service outage. So you’d want to give it a few minutes or hours before retrying as there is a chance that your network provider is doing maintenance, and might have paused the messaging service.

Short Code issue

This seems to be the explanation as to why a lot of T-Mobile users are experiencing this issue. You will need the guidance of experienced technicians to solve this problem. 

Text message app restrictions

The “free msg: recipient unable to receive message – message blocking is active.” error would mean that the recipient has restricted messages coming from a certain group of users. Some messaging applications might have issues working seamlessly with your carrier. If any of these was used, you might have to check to see if you can manually allow these applications. If there isn’t an option to allow these applications, then you might not be able to resolve this issue on your own.

Unsuitable Plan

In this case, you might have picked an option that doesn’t allow your phone to receive or send premium messages. Even though this feature is made use of by only a couple of messaging apps, it’s still an integral prerequisite for them to work effectively. 

Data plan issues

You also want to be sure of the plan you’re subscribed to. If you are trying to send text messages from a Data only plan, then there’s a chance that the message wouldn’t go through and you’ll get this error message.

Basic troubleshooting steps:

  • Restart your device.
  • Turn off Wi-Fi to make sure you’re using your device network.
  • Check whether the number you’re messaging is on the device Block or Spam List. If it is, you won’t be able to text to that number.
  • Update the time and date on your device and enable auto-update.
  • Uninstall any downloaded messaging apps.
  • Contact your carrier ask them to guide you to make sure the short message service center (SMSC) setting accurate.
  • (Android only): Clear the messaging app cache a & b steps is a guess, not knowing what device is having the trouble. Check your device settings for device maintenance, or device care.
  • App cache: Choose Email & Messaging > Manage messages.
  • SMSC setting: Choose Apps & Accessories > Manage apps.
  • (Apple only): Check the following: Is the text being sent through iMessage? If so, see iMessage Help instead. If you or your contact had an iPhone and switched recently, turn off or unregister iMessage & FaceTime. iPhones continue sending via iMessage until it’s turned off, so you’ll miss these texts if your phone doesn’t have iMessage.
  • Update your device software to the latest version.
  • Delete texts and text threads. You can back these up beforehand using apps from the app store.
  • If available, try texting the same number using another device, or other means other than your cell phone. This test will help determine if the person on the receiving end of the text has turned on a feature returning blocking active.

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Check If The Number Or Email Address Is Correct

Make sure that you’re using the right phone number or email address. If necessary, delete the contact entirely from your phone, and re-add them as a new contact with the proper phone number (including the area code). Go to Settings > Messages > Blocked and make sure that they’re not on your block list.

Check If Coverage Is Available In Your Area

If you’re in an area where coverage is listed as “None”, you won’t be able to make calls or sent texts. To make sure that voice service is available where you are, plug your address into our map and check your voice coverage.

An area with no coverage will show up in white.

Confirm That Your Phone Number Is Active

To check the status of your phone number, go to the Device settings page in your account and check that the Status of your phone is listed as “active”.

If your number is suspended or still porting, those statuses will show up here and you will not be able to send or receive text messages.

Try To Send Plain Text

To test whether you can send a text message at all, send a message with just plain text. That means taking out any emojis, graphics, pictures, ringtones, wallpapers, signatures, sounds, symbols or any type of attachment.

Try Calling The Number In Question

If there’s a specific number that you’re having trouble texting, try calling that number. Voice and text messages travel over the same part of the network so if you can call the number you’re trying to text, you should be able to text as well. If you can reach that number by calling, but not with a text message, this may indicate that the receiver has a block of some sort in place. If you get a “message blocking active” error when you try, they may have not had messaging enabled or that they have a block in place.

Conversely, if someone is able to call you but they get a “message blocking active” error, you may have their number blocked for texting or you may need to check that you have text messaging enabled.

Is Messaging Services Enabled On Your Account?

To confirm that text messaging is enabled on your account, go to the Device settings page for your phone and make sure that “Can send/receive text messages” is “Enabled”.

If there is no edit icon at the top of the Messages section (i.e. you can’t update your text messaging settings) then the number is not active.

If someone who is texting you is getting a “Message Blocking Active” error, this may also mean that you don’t have text messaging enabled.

Confirm The Country Code For International Texts

If you’re texting internationally make sure you’re entering the country code correctly. A quick online search will help you find the correct country code.

Confirm Your Email-to-text Address With Any Senders

If someone is trying to use email-to-text to contact you, ensure that they’ve entered your address correctly. It should be @tmomail.net (i.e. [email protected]).

Remember, email-to-text only supports regular text messaging, so if someone is trying to send you a picture or video message, it will not come through via email-to-text.

Power Cycle or Soft Reset Your Phone And Remove The SIM Card

Shut your phone down by holding and pressing the power button on a smartphone, or the Call End button on a feature phone. If you have a removable battery, remove it and the SIM card for about 30 seconds after you’ve shut the phone down. If your battery is not removable then just remove the SIM card. Then reinsert the battery and SIM card and power the phone back up.

How Do I Know If Someone Blocked Me From Text Messaging On Their Phone?

If you simply don’t get replies from whoever you’re texting, it doesn’t mean they blocked you.

First, look for the delivered text right below your message:

If that appears, then chances are your friend or whoever you’ve been messaging is simply not near their phone or doing something else. If they blocked you, then your phone knows not to carry the text, so you will not see that delivered.

Now, if you are texting with someone on an android device while you have an iPhone or vice versa, the messages are called SMS messages and as well as the messages itself, the send button will also be green:

If you’re sending an SMS Message, it will take significantly longer for the message to be delivered, so don’t count on it delivering immediately. If it takes a while to deliver, there’s just a lot of traffic between iOS and Android phones sending text messages between each other.

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However, if you see the error sending a message and you have all of the following:

  • Adequate WiFi
  • Data at three bars or more
  • Your friend has adequate WiFi
  • You know they have good data

Then there is a chance that they may have blocked you. Don’t fret however, this chance is slim, compared to the chances of the other possibilities. When you see this: “Couldn’t send” or “Not Delivered”

Then there is a chance you may have been blocked. However, here are some other things that may have happened:

  • You send a text to the wrong number.
  • You do not have service.
  • Not connected to WiFi.
  • Your friend is not connected to WiFi.
  • Your friend does not have access to data.
  • You are attempting to text an android user or vice versa.
  • Your phone is outdated (at this moment iOS 8 or below doesn’t have enough support to text other devices)

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Diekola Yusufhttps://www.novabach.com
Founder & CEO of Novabach - Yusuf is a Tech enthusiast. Fascinated by Computers and all sort of Technology. He writes news, updates, walkthroughs, guides, troubleshooting tips, and how-to tutorials on gadgets and consumer electronics.

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