How can I divert or stop Google Voice spam callers from leaving a voice message?

S Knop May 11, 2012
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Using Google Voice, a handy option for spam callers was to add them to a group and then have that group greeted by the ubiquitous pleasant voice telling them the number has been disconnected. It used to be an option. But now the only option is to use the “System Standard” or “Default Greeting” which says the exact same thing: “the Google Voice subscriber is not available. Please leave a message after the tone.”

My point is that I do not want to give these jackasses an opportunity to leave another vulgar message. I want them to hear that my number has been disconnected, just as it has done in the past (for about 4 years or so). Is this an oversight by Google? Or do they want there to be only one option that advertises you as a Google Voice subscriber?

More importantly, is there a work-around? I have found a list of numbers that give various old-school greetings, but to forward you need to have the phone in your possession and enter a code to ensure you’re not doing anything nefarious. I am aware that you can record your own greetings and it gives adequate directions.

I even thought about playing a .WAV file into the mic of my phone… but there has to be a way to get back to where it was originally. Could it be that I have checked the Sprint box for my cell on the “Phones” setup page? Any help would be much appreciated.

  1. Kannon Y
    May 11, 2012 at 6:27 pm

    "Block caller" appears to still be available from the "more" -> context menu, as indicated in the above link, but only for individual calls. And whether or not it initiates the "this line has been disconnected" message is unknown to me.

    As you've said, it doesn't appear in the same location as it used to in the groups section. It's weird that Google got rid of the "disconnected" message for groups because it's indispensable for anyone who gets regular harassing phone calls. For example, I used to buy and sell a bit of stuff on Craigslist, but was eventually overwhelmed by the sheer volume of scamster calls - it made the service more irritating than useful.

    On the positive side of things, Google is doing for telemarketers on phone networks what they did to spam on the internet: they're creating a blocked list of known offenders. So anytime you report a telemarketer, the service gets better for everyone using the service.

    How attached are you to playing the "disconnected" message? If you flag a particular caller as spam you help block them entirely from not just your own phone, but from Google's entire network.

    Anyway, I think that "block caller" may have accidentally been removed as a group option as it appears Google has been attempting to integrate Google+ and GV to some extent. It's my guess that the feature will return in a more transparent location in the near future.