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Fw: [webwatch] NY Times: White House E-Mail System Becomes Less User-Friendly

From: David Poehlman <poehlman1@comcast.net>
Date: Fri, 18 Jul 2003 15:30:13 -0400
Message-ID: <00a001c34d63$04c36080$6501a8c0@handsontech>
To: "wai-ig list" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Jennifer Sutton" <jensutton@earthlink.net>
To: "webwatch" <webwatch@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Friday, July 18, 2003 3:23 PM
Subject: [webwatch] NY Times: White House E-Mail System Becomes Less

Hi all:

I thought some of you might have time and/or interest in checking this new
email system out for accessibility.  I don't have time at the moment to
navigate through, apparently, nine pages.

White House E-Mail System Becomes Less User-Friendly
Do you want to send an e-mail message to the White House?
Good luck.
In the past, to tell President Bush  or at least those assigned to read
his mail
 what was on your mind it was necessary only to sit down at a personal
connected to the Internet and dash off a note to president@whitehouse.gov.
But this week, Tom Matzzie, an online organizer with the A.F.L.-C.I.O.,
that communicating with the White House had become a bit more daunting.
When Mr.
Matzzie sent an e-mail protest against a Bush administration policy, the
was bounced back with an automated reply, saying he had to send it again in
a new
Under a system deployed on the White House Web site for the first time last
those who want to send a message to President Bush must now navigate as
many as nine
Web pages and fill out a detailed form that starts by asking whether the
sender supports White House policy or differs with it.
The White House says the new e-mail system, at www.whitehouse .gov/webmail,
is an
effort to be more responsive to the public and offer the administration
"real time"
access to citizen comments.
Completing a message to the president also requires choosing a subject from
the provided
list, then entering a full name, organization, address and e-mail address.
Once the
message is sent, the writer must wait for an automated response to the
e-mail address
listed, asking whether the addressee intended to send the message. The
message is
delivered to the White House only after the person using that e-mail
address confirms
Jimmy Orr, a White House spokesman, described the system as an
"enhancement" intended
to improve communications. He called it a "work in progress," and advised
of the public who had sensitive or personal matters to bring up with
President Bush
to use traditional methods of communications, like a letter on paper, a fax
or a
phone call.
He said the White House, which gets about 15,000 electronic messages each
day, had
designed the new system during the last nine months in partnership with a
firm that he would not identify.

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Received on Friday, 18 July 2003 15:30:24 UTC

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