For one to listen to rechilus within the framework of halachah, it is not sufficient that the listener be justified in paying attention to the information being conveyed; the speaker, too, must have constructive intent. If the speaker is unaware that the information he is relating is of significance to the listener, then he is guilty of speaking rechilus. The listener, then, is cause for the speaker’s transgression and has violated the prohibition “Before a blind person do not place a stumbling block” (Vayikra 19:14), which prohibits one from causing another Jew to sin.
Thus, it is the responsibility of the listener to explain to the speaker that the information is important for him to hear and is therefore not considered gossip.
If the speaker was already in the process of relating the gossip to others when a person to whom the information is relevant appeared on the scene, he would not be guilty of causing the speaker to transgress. Even so, it is proper for the listener to explain why he is listening, so that the others will realize that he is not transgressing and that he considers their non-constructive listening a sin.