Google Hangouts wasn’t critically acclaimed in the way it probably should have been, and as Google’s messaging mess continues, the service is scheduled to eventually split into other products. Hangouts as we know it is on its death bed, but apparently, that isn’t stopping Google from rolling out a new user reporting feature.

Detailed on a Google support post, Hangouts is getting this new user reporting feature on the web (via Android Police). For a long time now, Hangouts has allowed blocking users who abused the service, most often those with spam accounts. However, that behavior was not reported to Google for further action.

Now, this user reporting option will give Google a heads up when someone is taking advantage of Hangouts in a bad way. When you go to block someone, Google will also give you the option to report the user in question to the company, with a transcript of the last 10 messages sent in that conversation.

We now have the ability to report individuals who are abusing or misusing Google Hangouts. Users who don’t know you will need to send you an invitation to chat. If a spam invitation isn’t filtered, or if you don’t feel comfortable in a Hangout with someone, you can block that individual and now you can report them too. When you report someone for abuse,  a copy of the last 10 messages of your conversation is sent to Google for review.

google hangouts user reporting

It’s more than a little bizarre to see Google bringing new feature to Hangouts at this point in 2019. The company previously announced that it would be shuttering the current consumer version of Hangouts while transitioning users to Hangouts Chat, the new business-focused messaging option. As far as Google has said, that’s still the plan for the platform, but perhaps a new feature like this suggests it will be sticking around a bit longer. We’ll have to wait and see on that front, but I wouldn’t get my hopes up.

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Ben Schoon

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