The official IRC channel for GNU Emacs is #emacs on Libera Chat (a new network set up by the former freenode staff). Connect by pointing your IRC client to irc.libera.chat:6697 (TLS).
There are several IRC clients available for Emacs - see the client section of InternetRelayChat for options.
The Libera.Chat IRC channel #emacs is a place where people can ask questions and hang out with other Emacs folks.
The chatter is in English and EmacsLisp, but other flavours of Lisp and French, Finnish, German, Hindi, Portuguese, Swedish, Icelandic, Tagalog, Persian, and who knows what else are heard from time to time. Pour les francophones, allez voir aussi SalleEmacsFr. Para la gente hispanoparlante, también vea CanalEmacsEs. See EmacsChannelDemographics to get a sense of who’s on the channel.
Public logging of the Emacs channel is forbidden. (See EmacsChannelLogging.)
Below is a list of all the Emacs-related IRC channels on the Libera Chat IRC server:
In addition to Libera.Chat's network-wide policies, we have some of our own rules (some of which are redundant):
/ignore. If an off-topic discussion gets heated or starts to drown out on-topic discussion, please take it elsewhere. If a discussion disrupts Emacs-related help, bring it to the attention of a channel operator. See the Law and Order section below.
/awaymessage will be enough.
Violators of this code of conduct may be temporarily or permanently banned from the channel.
If you need the help of a channel operator (usually for kicking and banning obnoxious fellow channel members), you can get a list of these from fsbot. Just say:
To call the ops, use
ops <nick-to-complain-about> [reason]. Make sure you have a clear reason for getting in touch with the ops, such as code of conduct violations.
In the background the Libera.Chat servers maintain an access list for the channel. Try it for yourself:
/msg chanserv flags #emacs
ChanServ will reply with a list of people who have some sort of power on the channel. These are the important flags:
The most powerful flag is the founder flag (+F). Currently (2021 May 26) bandali has it.
If you’re in trouble:
ops can add themselves using
,ops-list is also <nick>
The channel is probably logged by a gazillion bots (and human users). Some of the bots one might encounter are described below.
In addition to addressing the bots like any other person, by prefixing the message with the recipients nickname and a colon, the bots understand a variety of special syntax among the traffic. For example, fsbot parses strings surrounded by pairs of double commas.
The bots generally provide help if you ask them for it. Better do that in private though, to keep it off the channel.
Fsbot, an instance of ErBot, is the simplest to use. It has pointers to nearly all the pages on this wiki, among massive amounts of other usefulness. Fsbot commands start with an initial comma. It’s cunning enough to respond to other syntaxes too.
<kensanata> ,setfonts <fsbot> me thinks SetFonts is at http://www.emacswiki.org/cgi-bin/wiki.pl?SetFonts
offby1 runs this bot in the channel. Its sole useful feature is using http://tinyurl.com to convert long URLs to short ones. Other features, only arguably useful, include entertaining its author; spewing random quotes on demand; a “seen” feature similar to birny’s; and a Scheme evaluator (handy for confusing Lisp novices who are unclear about the difference between Emacs Lisp and Scheme). Its source lives at https://github.com/offby1/rudybot.
After spending some time on the channel, one’s mind might start suspecting the EmacsChannelPeople are mere slackers, doing little else than idling on their beloved channel. The EmacsChannelDemographics certainly proves such accusations downright rubbish. These “slackers” come from all aspects of life and are involved a vast range of most Useful Things indeed. Besides they’re so busy doing their Useful Things, they have only time to idle on the channel, and not chit-chat all day long. Many have even automated the joining process (f.ex. ErcEmacsChannel), to minimize the distraction. If the channel does seem rather quiet at times, a gentle stir usually attracts audience.
It would be naive to think only strictly Emacs-related issues were discussed on the channel, especially on a channel where ‘strict’ itself is such an unpopular idea. At times discussions, especially about politics, can get rather carried away as we all so well know. It might be best to take it to the IdeologiesChannel when that happens. All in all, the Emacsfolks being such a well-behaved lots, there isn’t much to EmacsChannelMaintenance beyond fighting EmacsChannelHarassment.
This community used to be on freenode, but this was taken over by the new freenode staff on May 25 2021 UTC and shut down as part of a larger hostile takeover of the freenode network (see freenode now belongs to Andrew Lee, and I'm leaving for a new network and andrew lee just seized over 700 channels on freenode because they mentioned libera.chat in their topic), prompting the community of #emacs to migrate.
The #emacs channel on freenode is now run by the new freenode staff, and no longer has anything to do with the community that was previously on freenode.