(Proverbs 26:22 KJV) The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.
Is this a word for the speaker or the listener? The Bible is clear that the one who spreads gossip is involved in sin. Does the same thing apply to the listener? I think it might be a type of “age of accountability”. When someone starts to speak you don’t know what they are going to say. There comes point when it becomes clear what is going on. That is the time to disconnect. Sometimes all you can do is refuse to pass it on. More often we need to learn to cut them off and walk away. It isn’t easy.
I find that a simple “no” is often not enough to stop the person who says, “Do you want to know a secret”. Often the “secret” is a bit of juicy gossip that they obviously want you to pass on.
So? Obviously we need to not spread gossip. Maybe we need to be more aggressive in refusing to listen.