White House E-mail follow-up

Dave Kristofferson kristoff at NET.BIO.NET
Fri Feb 12 00:13:46 EST 1993


Steve Modena posted the Compuserve address for reaching the White
House a while back so I thought that you would be interested in seeing
the follow-up.

				Sincerely,

				Dave Kristofferson
				BIOSCI/bionet Manager

				kristoff at net.bio.net


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-----------------------------Original message----------------------------
As this subject has come up on info-nets, I thought I'd send out this
update.

   January 31, 1993

                Important Information RE: E-Mail to the White House

        Yesterday, I saw several postings related to the E-mail address
   for the White House.  Along with a good number of others, I worked
   throughout the campaign as part of a network of E-mail volunteers
   for the Clinton campaign, so I can pass along some important
   information about that E-mail account.  The account is actually the
   personal compuserve account of Jock Gill.  Jock worked hard (along
   with a handful of programming volunteers, BBS operators, listserver
   maintainers, and computer sophisticates at places such as Marist
   College, MIT, San Francisco, Chicago, and elsewhere) during the
   campaign to put together an E-mail system for national campaigning.
   The system was later expanded to accommodate all three major
   Presidential campaigns.  It was an innovative, highly successful
   effort and it played a huge role in getting campaign position
   statements out to a wide public.  Things posted from that address
   found their way into the virtual reality as the messages got passed
   along many networks from their original posting.  Several weeks
   before the Inauguration of President Clinton, Jeff Eller was
   appointed by the President-Elect to have overall charge of
   establishing something which has never existed--an interactive
   public access E-mail system into the White House and into other
   offices of the administration.  Jock Gill was then hired by the
   administration to work under Jeff Eller.  Currently, Jock Gill is
   working in an office located in the Old Executive Office Building
   across the street from the White House.  At this point, he is
   working alone, without a staff.  His current assignment is to use
   the E-mail system (as during the campaign) to issue official copies
   of White House statements, the texts of press briefings and press
   conferences, copies of Executive Orders and Presidential Memos, and
   the like to the virtual world of E-mail.  Since the compuserve box
   is a regular personal mail box, it gets filled quickly, especially
   given the high volume of mail now beginning to arrive with the broad
   dissemination of his address.  Those of you who have sent E-mail to
   that address may well have received an error message stating that
   the box is full.  That's another way of saying it has been
   overwhelmed.  Jock has asked those of us who have been part of the
   volunteer E-mail team to help him out while he works to get a good
   interactive system up and running.  Basically, he has asked that
   everyone cooperate and not begin sending a barrage of E-mail to that
   compuserve address.  The White House itself employs a large staff to
   handle snail mail.  Actually, at this point in the development of
   the White House E-mail system, you will probably get your message
   through to the administration quicker through ordinary snail mail
   and telephone.  Later, once the administration's E-mail team
   develops the system they want and need, E-mail contacts should
   became the easier route.  All things in their time.  Once the E-mail
   address was circulated together with the heading the "White House",
   everyone understandably believed a real system was up and running.
   Not quite yet.

   SUGGESTION:  Use the compuserve address you have judiciously,
   reserving it for absolutely vital contacts.  Until such time that a
   real public access White house E-mail system is operational,
   consider relying on the traditional means of contacting the
   administration.  Given what they had to start with from the previous
   administration (scratch), I have every reason to expect that Jeff
   Eller and Jock Gill will work well--and as quickly as possible--to
   get an interactive system up and running.  But it will take time and
   patience.  We can all help them achieve that effort best if we
   refrain from acting as if that non-existent system were already in
   place.  PLEASE HELP RELAY THIS CONTEXT AND SUGGESTION TO OTHER
   NETWORKS AND INDIVIDUALS.  Thanks.

                Snail Mail Address and Phone Numbers -- White House

        White House Numbers:
            The President                 (202) 456-1414
            White House Comment Line      (202) 456-1111
                 (To register your opinion on an issue)
            When bill signed or vetoed    (202) 456-2226

            Vice President                (202) 456-2326
                                          (202) 456-7125

        Mailing Address:

            The White House
            1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
            Washington DC  20500

   ------
        Jon Darling
        PITT/Johnstown  -- January 31, 1993


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