How Should I Respond?

I'm about to head off to the London School of Economics to do a master's degree in their philosophy department. I just logged into my LSE e-mail account for the first time, and discovered I had one message, from LSE, saying, "This message was automatically generated, and you should ignore it."

Now, if someone said, "Gene ignored the sign at the beach that forbid swimming," that would mean that I did go swimming. By analogy, in order to ignore a message that says it should be ignored, it seems I should not ignore it. But, if I do that, then I am ignoring it.

You see my dilemma. I suspect this is some sort of test from the philosophy department to see if I am really up to the mark, and I'm very anxious about how to respond (or not).


  1. Some philosophers might ask, "How do we know the message even really exists?"

  2. Send them a reply along the lines of:

    "Just out of curiousity, why would you set up a system which sends messages to users and state that they should ignore them. To see if they receive the message properly?"

  3. You should probably respond in kind:

    "You message has been successfully ignored. This response was generated automatically by my good manners instincts and thus should be also ignored."

  4. You should probably respond in kind, like this for example:

    "Your message has been successfully ignored. This response was automatically generated by my compulsive good manners instinct and should thus be ignored."

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