I was amazed to see such an auto-reply message!! Made me think a lot about the level of dedication to work that great men put in!
I am not on vacation, but I am at the end of a long time delay. I am
located somewhere on Earth, but as far as responding to email is concerned,
I appear to be well outside the solar system.
After your message arrives at gnu.org, I will collect it in my next batch of
incoming mail, some time within the following 24 hours. I will spend much of
the following day reading that batch of mail and will come across your
message at some point. If I write a response immediately, it will go out in
the next outgoing batch–typically around 24 hours after I collected your
message, but occasionally sooner or later than that. Please expect a minimum
delay of between 24 and 48 hours in receiving a response to your mail to me.
If your message is hard to understand or responding takes real work,
the response could take longer.
So please wait 48 hours after sending a message before you resend it,
remind me about it, or ask if I have received it. If it has been less
than 48 hours, the absence of a response from me only means you have not
given me time to answer.
If you are having a conversation with me, please keep in mind that each
message you receive from me is a response to the mail you sent 24 to 48 hours
earlier, and when writing it, I probably had not yet downloaded your later
If you are in big hurry to speak with me, and one day’s delay would be
a serious problem, you can ask my FSF assistant to phone me. Send mail to
<email@example.com> saying what you would like to talk with me about,
and giving your telephone number. You can also call the Free Software
Foundation office at 617-542-5942 (weekday Boston business hours) and
ask them to phone me on your behalf. If it’s really important, try both!
An intermediate measure is to email me your phone number and ask me
to phone you.
But if there isn’t enough hurry to warrant phoning me, please don’t bother
the FSF people. The mail you already sent me will reach me before any mail
they could send me now on your behalf. I will respond as soon as I can.
If you do not wish to receive this message ever again, please send a message
to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject “OFF”.
Otherwise, you might receive a reply like this one up to once a month.
(This is an auto-reply message that the author received from Richard Mathew Stallman. This is posted here with all rights from RMS himself.)