Out of Focus Reply

Why complain about email overload? Take advantage of the fact that you get a ton of email every day, especially when you’re away. It’s interesting that hardly anyone uses a creative “Out Of Office” message these days (I admit, nor do I).

Today I got an interesting OOF message that immediately caught my attention, from an agency using it to promote one of their clients.  Here’s what I got from Tom De Bruyne (Boondoggle Amsterdam):

I am currency out of the focus. I will make my comeback on Tuesday July 28th. Please contact my comics at Boondoggle for surgeon matters. I will cancer your male asap.
Kind rewards,
Tom De Bruyne

Below this message it had a small banner for Berlitz:


The banner obviously referring to the fact that people say strange things whenever they are not good at foreign languages.

I just loved it! Berlitz is known for creative advertising (just thinking about the ‘What are you sinking about’ video makes me laugh) but I never had seen such an original auto-reply just yet. Great stuff Tom! Just tell them Berlitz people to do something about their website, it looks horrible.



  1. Cam Beck says:

    That’s pretty clever interjection of relevant humor. A lot of companies wouldn’t ever allow it.

  2. [wallie] says:

    I used to refer to http://www.uglypeople.com for the people who miss me badly, in my OOF :-)

  3. Buzzing Bees says:

    Excellent! “I will cancer your male” :-)

  4. Philippe says:

    Our dear colleague Jeroen is OOF.

    Look at his out of office reply:
    “Hi there and thank you for whatever you did that resulted in your reading this message,

    I am out of the office and will try to forget everything. I will think of nature and watch fluffy clouds go by. Accessing my mailbox is not really part of my short-term plans. I will return in the office on August 11th.

    For urgent issues that need my personal attention, you can try to contact me on my mobile but I may lose track of the device over the next couple of days intermittently as it doesn’t fit in most of my shorts. Sorry!

    For urgent matters concerning the current MSN.be site you can send a mail to (alias)@microsoft.com and this esteemed colleague will most probably be able to help you with your request.

    Thanks for your appreciation,


    PS. this mailbox is not monitored during my absence, but no worries, I trust it will be able to cope with the lack of supervision for a couple of days :)”

  5. Imke Dielen says:

    copy paste ;)

  6. Philippe says:

    Copy paste indeed :)

  7. Kris Hoet says:

    I really have to start thinking about a more interesting OOF message, mine seems more boring by the minute :)

  8. Jeroen says:

    Thannks, this is really too much honor…
    By the way Kris, putting a little more effort into my message was actually inspired by exactly this blogpost, so you are the influencer that set this in motion.
    Cool to see it come full circle and end up as a comment on the same blogpost again :)

  9. Kris Hoet says:

    That is very cool indeed… still need to change my OOF for next time though :)

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