Forwarded by Gleason Sackman, net-happenings moderator
---------- Text of forwarded message ----------
Date: Thu, 3 Jun 1993 13:40:04 -0400
From: Andrew Blau <blau@EFF.ORG>
To: Multiple recipients of list COMMUNET <COMMUNET@uvmvm.bitnet>
Subject: House of Reps announces Internet Connections, too
>>> ANNOUNCEMENT OF ELECTRONIC MAIL SYSTEM BY HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
>>> Chairman Charlie Rose and Ranking Minority Member Bill Thomas of the
>> Committee on House Administration announced today the pilot program of the
>> Constituent Electronic Mail System.
>>> This groundbreaking new service will allow citizens to communicate
>>> directly with their Member of Congress by electronic mail. The House
>>> of Representatives has established an electronic gateway to the
>>> Internet, the vast computer network that is used currently by over 12
>>> million people worldwide. Participating Members of the House have been
>>> assigned public mailboxes which may be accessed by their constituents
>>> from their home computers. In addition, many libraries, schools and
>>> other public institutions now provide, or soon will provide, public
>>> access to the Internet.
>>> The Members of the House of Representatives who have agreed to
>>> participate in this pilot program are: Rep. Jay Dickey (AR-07), Rep.
>>> Sam Gejdenson (CT-02), Rep. Newt Gingrich (GA-06), Rep. George Miller
>>> (CA-07), Rep. Charlie Rose (NC-07), Rep. Fortney Pete Stark (CA-13),
>>> and Rep. Melvin Watt (NC-12). These Members will be making
>>> announcements in their congressional districts within the next few
>>> weeks to make their constituents aware of the new service.
>>> The Constituent Electronic Mail System represents a significant
>>> effort by the House of Representatives to expand communication with
>>> constituents. With the tremendous growth of electronic mail over the
>>> past several years, and the increasingly inter-connected nature of
>>> computer networks, the new service is a natural addition to the
>>> current methods of communication available to constituents. At the
>>> present time, House Members involved in the pilot program will largely
>>> respond to electronic mail messages from their constituents by postal
>>> mail, to ensure confidentiality.
>>> Constituents of House Members participating in the pilot program
>>> who wish to communicate with those Members will be asked to send a
>>> letter or postcard stating their interest to the Member's office. The
>>> request will include the constituent's Internet ``address,'' as well
>>> as that constituent's name and postal address. This process will allow
>>> Members to identify an electronic mail user as his or her constituent.
>>> The pilot e-mail program will continue until sufficient feedback
>>> from participating offices has been collected to allow improvements
>>> and modifications to the system. When House Information Systems and
>>> the Committee on House Administration are satisfied that the system is
>>> sufficiently error-free, other Members of the House will be allowed to
>>> add this new service as technical, budgetary and staffing concerns
>>> For more information, Internet users are encouraged to contact the
>>> House of Representative's new on-line information service. Please send
>>> a request for information to CONGRESS@HR.HOUSE.GOV (see note).
>>> NOTE: Please be advised that the commercial ``at'' symbol is not
>>> recognized by some computer systems when transmitted electronically.
>>> The ``at'' symbol is an important part of the electronic mail address
>>> for the U.S. House information service, and should be inserted in
>>> place of the question mark in the following example: