Personal


Friends & Family & Personal28 Sep 2008 04:46 am

Felix

Early this morning we said good bye to our beloved Felix. In declining health over the last year or so, a recent recurrence of an upper respiratory infection was more than he could battle. Tonight he appeared to be having more difficulty than usual in breathing, so before it got to the point of distress, we made the difficult decision to put him to sleep.

As I checked on him before I went to bed, I noticed that his breathing was somewhat labored and he looked generally exhausted from the effort to breathe. He hadn’t gotten up from his spot on the spare bed very much today, so I carried him to his water bowl where he drank profusely, a sign that he’d not wanted to (or couldn’t) get up earlier. A quick check indicated that he was indeed fairly dehydrated (a symptom of his advancing kidney disease), so we gave him a round of subcutaneous fluids as we have done for more than a year. But even with the hydration, which usually perks him up, he was clearly uncomfortable. We knew it was time.

We’d been talking for a couple of months about his health and when we might need to make the difficult decision to put him to sleep. We’d considered it a couple of weeks ago, but a temporarily successful round of antibiotics seemed to clear up his upper respiratory issues for a while and he seemed to be more of his old self… wanting attention, following the sunlight to strategic snoozing spots in the apartment, etc. But about a week later, the infection was showing signs of returning, and his discomfort continued to slowly grow.

Tonight was a painful night for us, but it was peaceful for him. We all got to spend some time with him and he even purred a little as we scratched his tummy while waiting in the vet’s exam room. They took him into the back for a few minutes while the tech inserted an IV line so that, when it was time, things would go more smoothly. They brought him back to us in the exam room and we continued to pet him as he calmed down from the IV process. We continued to visit with him for about 15 more minutes until the doctor was ready.

Jongan and I withdrew to the lobby as Justin volunteered to oversee the event. I had been present at the passing of two other pets and I still have awful dreams about those events, so bless Justin for taking on the task. Justin reported that the end was very calm and peaceful.

We will miss Felix terribly. But I’m comforted by the fact that his remains will be cremated and scattered in the same place as his brother, Tiki, who we lost a couple of years ago. These years were rough on Felix without his brother, so I’m glad they’ll be together again. Meanwhile the three of us will work to keep Maggie happy. She and Felix got along pretty well but she’s been a pretty independent cat in the 2 years we’ve had her… we’ll keep a close watch to see how she fares as she realizes that he’s gone.

I can safely say that all who knew Felix would agree that he was sweet, loving, and had an outgoing and wonderful personality. We will celebrate the richness he brought to all our lives long after the sting of this night passes.

Rest in peace, our sweet boy!

Update (10/7/08): We got a letter today from the UC Davis Center for Companion Animal Health. The vet clinic where we took Felix, the San Francisco Veterinary Specialists, had sent them a donation in memory of Felix. That was very nice of them.

Personal & Sillycon Valley Biz & Spam12 Aug 2008 10:29 am

Word has already gotten out — in no small part due to my screwing up on LinkedIn — so I might as well post about it: August 1 was my last day at Habeas, and August 11 was my first day at Responsys. (The official announcement will be coming soon, so act surprised please!)

I will be serving in the role of Director of Privacy and Industry Relations. This is similar to what I was doing at Habeas, so all of those folks with whom I have interacted in the industry will probably see me doing all the same sorts of things, just wearing a different brand of hat.

To some of my colleagues at Habeas, my departure came as something of a surprise. I actually gave two weeks notice, but Des asked me to keep my impending departure confidential until my last day so as to not add further confusion or speculation to the internal office atmosphere during the pre-merger due diligence phase. So I had to forgo the lavish, tearful going-away party that I’m certain would have otherwise been scheduled. ;-)

While I am very much looking forward to my new opportunity, I do have some regret that I won’t be around to share in the excitement and adventure of merging Habeas and Return Path. I have known many of the folks at RP for many years and they’re a good group of people. I’m sorry I won’t have the chance to work directly with them — and to continue working with all of the great folks at Habeas. However, over at Responsys, we will still be travelling in all of the same circles and I look forward to seeing some of you at various industry events, conferences, etc., going forward.

Excelsior!

AGLOCO & Personal & Sillycon Valley Biz19 Jul 2007 06:24 pm

I read it on Yahoo! News, so it must be true! ;-) I now work for email reputation services firm Habeas!

I’ve known the folks at Habeas for a long time and I’m really excited to finally get the chance to work with them directly. As Director of Email Policy, I’ll be working directly for Habeas’s CEO Des Cahill in revising (or in some cases, establishing) the policies that will drive Habeas’s new and existing products and services in the growing market for reputation services. I’ll also be bringing my experience in building privacy and security related services and technologies as Habeas expands its offerings into some new and exciting directions.

This move also represents something of a homecoming for me — after several years of work on security and authentication startups, I’m coming back to the issues of spam and email marketing where I first started almost fifteen years ago. A lot has changed in that time, and one of the things I’m able to bring to Habeas is that perspective on the past (a/k/a where all the bodies are buried) along with my experiences in related issues facing other industries.

Here’s the press release which went out this week and was picked up on Yahoo! Business.

Habeas Appoints Ray Everett-Church as Director of Email Policy
Privacy Guru to Lead Habeas’s Email Policy and Compliance Services for Volume Senders

MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA–Jul 17, 2007 — Habeas, Inc. (www.habeas.com), the industry leader in email reputation services, today announced Ray Everett-Church has joined the company as Director of Email Policy.

In this role, Everett-Church will be responsible for the ongoing stewardship of Habeas’s email policy, as well as maintaining working relationships with ISP abuse desks, blocklists and anti-spam technology providers.

The addition of Everett-Church allows Habeas to expand its excellent support services to email senders and educate them on email best practices. In addition, the appointment further enhances Habeas’ ability to provide leadership and guidance on policy and sender requirements for audit, Safelist and compliance services for volume senders.

“Ray is an amazing addition to the Habeas family. His industry experience and qualifications make him the perfect person to help drive our compliance and best practices efforts,” said Des Cahill, CEO of Habeas. “As we continue to provide support and expert analysis for senders that will help them deliver email, Ray’s expertise will bolster our effectiveness in communicating the company’s compliance message to our many constituencies.”

Everett-Church is an internationally recognized expert on privacy law and Internet-related public policy, having served as founder and principal of PrivacyClue LLC and Vice President of Consulting with ePrivacy Group LLC.

Widely recognized as the “dean of corporate privacy officers,” he has provided consulting services to numerous companies such as Microsoft, AOL, Comcast, Pfizer, HSBC and Kimberly-Clark. Everett-Church co-authored “Internet Privacy for Dummies,” and continues to be a frequent commentator on legal and technology issues involving Internet privacy and security.

Prior to practicing law, Everett-Church worked as an independent consultant to the online services industry regarding legal, technical and policy issues.

About Habeas, Inc.
Habeas is an email Reputation Services Provider that offers solutions for legitimate senders to monitor and manage their email reputation to ensure maximum deliverability. Habeas sender reputation services include Habeas Audit for reputation assessment, Habeas Delivery Monitor for managing reputation information, and Habeas SafeList, the most broadly referenced Internet whitelist. Habeas also enables enterprises and ISPs to more efficiently process their inbound email and make better delivery decisions via its Reputation Network. This network is comprised of sender reputation information collected from four and a half million receiving systems in over 190 countries. For more information, visit www.habeas.com.

Some of you might be asking what this means for my involvement with AGLOCO. With the successful release of the AGLOCO Viewbar, the reality is that there is much less need for a full-time Privacy Officer, especially at this stage of the company when the team is so small and resources are tight. Of course there remain many privacy-related issues facing AGLOCO, and that is why I’ll be sticking around, just in a different way. I will become chairman of AGLOCO’s Privacy Advisory Council.

Later this Summer, we hope to be announcing the names of a few more people who will be joining me on the Privacy Advisory Council. Together, this body will be on-call to advise and counsel the AGLOCO executive team as they continue to build out the service. We’ll meet regularly with the executive and technical teams to review current practices, look forward to new services, and tackle the challenges that inevitably arise in trying to deliver the best value to members. I believe very strongly in the future prospects of AGLOCO (heck, I’ve got 38,000 referrals!!! Thanks David Lawrence! ;-) ), and am committed to doing everything I can to see that AGLOCO continues on is excellent trajectory towards success.

AGLOCO & Personal & Podcast & Sillycon Valley Biz21 Nov 2006 11:34 pm

As many astute readers of this blog may notice, I’ve not been blogging too much lately. And if you’re also a listener to The David Lawrence Show, you will have a good idea why: I’ve been up to my eyeballs with the launch of my new company, AGLOCO.

AGLOCO — which is an acronym of sorts, short for “A Global Community” — is a modern incarnation of the Infomediary concept that I helped to pioneer back during the “dotcom” days with AllAdvantage. At AGLOCO, I am a co-founder (along with a couple of former AllAdvantage founders and a new cast of thousands*) and Chief Privacy Officer. Oh, and de facto General Counsel (at least until we have enough money to hire a better lawyer). ;-)

( * Okay, not a cast of thousands… But we’ve got about a dozen Stanford students that are running most of the operations. Actually, we may very well be the largest single employer of the Stanford Graduate School of Business Class of 2007…)

What is AGLOCO?

At it’s core, AGLOCO is an Infomediary. What’s that?

On the Internet, advertisers and marketers are eagerly and greedily gathering information about you, your interests, your shopping patterns, and other pieces of your personal information. They use this information to build a “profile” which can be used to target advertisements to you. In fact, some “data brokerage” companies will sell that profile information — your information! — to the highest bidder.

An infomediary turns this equation upside down by working as an agent on behalf of consumers to gather the same kind of data profile, but this time the profile is kept private and under the ultimate control of the consumer. The infomediary then pays consumers a share of the advertising revenue. As the community of users grows, and the quality of the targeting profile improves, the infomediary can provide advertisers with a richer and more valuable advertising audience and in turn the infomediary can deliver more value back to the community.

If you look today at the most vibrant communities on the Internet, places like MySpace, YouTube, Flickr and del.icio.us, the members of those communities have made those sites into incredible successes. When MySpace sold to News Corp. for $580 Million, how much money did the users of MySpace make? When YouTube sold to Google for $1.65 Billion, how much of that money went to those lip-syncing Korean guys and the other thousands of users who made the site such a success?

Don’t get me wrong: I think the folks who create exciting websites and think up innovative “Web 2.0” concepts deserve to be rewarded for their creativity and their vision. But so do the users, without whom those sites would be nothing more than cute little ideas with no audience. Now, some will say that the users of YouTube or MySpace get value because they get the enjoyment of participating in the community and creating wacky webpages… all of which they get for the low, low price of FREE!

Yeah, well… one of our founding team stumbled upon a quote that sums up my feelings: Sometimes “Free” is Too Expensive!

AGLOCO will be the only (at least until somebody swipes the idea) Internet community where all the Members who come together to make it a success will actually share in the wealth created by their hard work and dedication. If “Web 2.0 is all about user empowerment, AGLOCO is empowering a virtual revolution!

For more information, please check out AGLOCO and if you want to sign up, please use my referral number: AGLO-0009. You can also learn more about AGLOCO by checking out my exclusive Podcast Interview with David Lawrence. I did a written interview for the AGLOCO website, too.

Listen to the Podcast here. <img src="http://www.privacyclue.com/podcasts/podcast.jpg"

To read more about AGLOCO you can also check out the following blogs where AGLOCO’s launch is already generating a lot of interest:

AllAdvantage Is Back – GigaOM (11/03/2006)

AGLOCO launches – will pay you to surf the Web – VentureBeat (11/20/2006)

Web 1.0 Undead Rise: AGLOCO – TechCrunch

AGLOCO – AllAdvantage team launches new(ish) business – E-Consultancy (11/20/2006)

AllAdvantage 2.0, AGLOCO Launches – GigaOM (11/20/2006)

Now I like AGLOCO even more – McCall’s Notes (11/20/2006)

Personal16 Oct 2006 02:35 pm

Today, Justin and I are officially San Francisco’s newest homeowners.

After several years of renting and getting the shakes every time we looked at real estate prices in the San Francisco Bay Area, we finally took the plunge. What finally did it for us, what finally pushed us over the edge, was the need to find some place closer to Justin’s new office in the South of Market (SoMa) area of San Francisco.

Read more about our home search process, and see some cool pictures of our new place, after the jump…

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News & Culture & Personal04 Apr 2006 02:40 am

We were privileged to meet artist Tom Everhart this past weekend at the opening of his new show: “Cracking Up.” The show opened April 1, 2006, in the Entertainment Galleries, a wonderful gallery in the Grand Canal Shoppes of The Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas.

As Everhart’s biography says:

Combining a sense of homage with an explosion of expression, Everhart’s paintings and lithographs are the culmination of a 20-year close association with cartoonist Charles M. Schulz and the Peanuts™ phenomenon. As the only fine artist authorized to artistically render the Peanuts characters, Everhart transcends the appeal of the comic strip’s familiar faces, transforming them into studies in brilliant, multidimensional color and personal, often comical commentaries on the people and events of our time.

Indeed, as you can see from the picture above, as well as the other photos we took during the opening, “explosion of expression” is only the beginning of a description of this artist’s tremendous work.

In considering which piece(s) to acquire, we were most taken by a series of smaller pieces which Tom calls “Artifacts”. These are small “snapshots” of sorts, ripped from larger sheets of paper down to little 12″ x 15″ pieces. This format was apparently a new adventure for Tom, but based upon the commentary from many in the opening night crowd, they are every bit as captivating as the huge pieces.

In fact, Justin and I stood quietly near by as visitors looked at all seven of the Artifact pieces, and on several occasions, people stopped and pointed out how much they liked the ones of Snoopy’s Ears and Woodstock, the two pieces that we bought. We’ve never bought art based upon what others think — we buy what appeals to us — but it’s always nice to find people commenting favorably on our tastes. :)

Thanks so much to Tom, gallery owners Jack and Carolyn Solomon, and gallery director John Graff for allowing us to be there. Additional thanks to Carolyn and Jack for opening their home for a wonderful brunch with Tom the next day.

All in all, a wonderful time in Las Vegas!

News & Culture & Personal28 Mar 2006 06:31 pm

It’s interesting to see all the news programs focusing on my undergrad alma mater, George Mason University. Finally, I will no longer get quizzical looks when I tell people where I went to college. Well, unless their basketball team goes back to sucking, then I’ll only have a few years’ reprieve.

My time at GMU had its ups and downs. I had a stormy tenure as the first openly gay editor of the student-run newspaper, The Broadside, at a time when Virginia was as conservative and closed-minded as it has ever been. I was Mason’s first-ever finalist for the prestigious Harry S. Truman Scholarships. I co-founded Mason’s gay and lesbian student association, which I understand is still chugging along. On the academic front, I had to scramble around to find a new major when the utter incompetence of the Department of Communications left me unable to make any academic progress towards my intended degree. Thankfully, I found a home, and a degree, elsewhere.

Most importantly, I learned some of my first hard lessons about braindead governmental bureaucracies. I learned about spineless academics and administrator-collaborators who stall, prevaricate, and otherwise conspire to confound progress, biding their time waiting for trouble-making students to get frustrated and move on.

Occasionally over the last decade I have looked in on my alma mater, seeing how they’ve grown and changed over the years. George Mason University was building a sound reputation as a decent state school while I was there, and seems to have continued to flourish.

Unfortunately, when I finally washed my hands of the place, I was so disgusted by my experiences there that I felt compelled to explain to an administrator that they’d turned me from someone filled with pride and strong school spirit — the kind of school spirit which was not exactly in over-abundance at what was in the early 90s (and to some extent still is, so I’ve heard) a soulless commuter school — into someone who didn’t even want to publicly wear a cap and gown for graduation and preferred to receive his diploma by mail.

To this day, I toss every communique from GMU into the garbage can. I rarely acknowledge my time there except as an entry in my stock bio. My diploma does hang on my office wall, but that’s just to make my “Me Wall” look more impressive.

I’m not sure what they could do to redeem themselves in my eyes. If anybody from GMU alumni relations reads this, be advised: you’re not likely to see a penny of my considerable wealth until several of the more annoying professors and administrators of my era are deceased, retired, or jailed.

In the meantime, I continue to be involved with, and a supporter of, my law school alma mater, George Washington University. Instead of encouraging the door to hit me on the keister on my way out of Dodge, the folks at GW recognized a good supporter when they saw one and begged me to become an advisor to the School of Engineering and Applied Science, where I had been involved during law school with several of their Internet-related policy programs and collaborative activities.

Regardless, congrats to the GMU basketball team! You’ve come a long way. Indeed, when I was in school, they made their very first appearance in the NCAA basketball championship. Unfortunately, as I recall they drew Bobby Knight’s Indiana in the first round and got whipped in the first round.

Great to see them going farther, and maybe they’ll go all the way!

Friends & Family & Personal14 Feb 2006 08:23 am

TikiIn the wee hours of Valentine’s Day morning, we lost one of our kitty-boys, Tiki. It was quick — too quick.

On Friday he had his annual checkup and while the doctor said everything was great now, a blood test revealed that he was starting into the very early stage kidney disease — so early that the only treatment option was to change him to a more kidney-friendly diet in his final years. And by most accounts he should have had a few more years at least.

But on Saturday, he snagged a claw while jumping into a chair and twisted/sprained his rear left foot. We took him to the local vet emergency clinic, where the doctor said he would be in pain for a couple of days but would be fine, and sent us home with some pain pills for him. After a day and a half, his swollen foot had almost returned to normal size, but something more was wrong. He refused to get up from his bed, and pretty much stopped eating and drinking. I had spoken with our regular vet that afternoon and he said that if he wasn’t drinking by morning, to bring him in for an injection of fluids because dehydration can be a concern, especially for the kidneys.

He was lucid and responsive around the time we went for some dinner on Monday evening, but a couple of hours after we got back, he started panting and was only barely responsive to stimuli. We rushed him to the emergency hospital where they administered fluids, did various blood tests, and said they thought he would probably be ok after a few days on fluids. So they sent us home. But around 5:20am they called us to say he had gone into cardio-pulmonary arrest and wasn’t breathing on his own. They agreed to keep him going until we could rush over (only a mile away). We said our goodbyes around 5:30am and they helped him finally go to sleep.

Clearly there was something terribly wrong going on that only Tiki knew about. Both the emergency vet and our regular vet are bewildered because this shouldn’t have happened, not like this… not this quickly. The small dose of pain medication he was on, Torbutrol, should have made him pretty loopy (and did), but shouldn’t have had any effect on his kidneys. And even on that, he shouldn’t have stopped drinking water. The blood tests were consistent with being pretty dehydrated, but none of the levels like sodium were high enough to explain what happened.

We will miss him terribly, but our grief is only a fraction of the pain and bewilderment that is in store for his brother, littermate, and life-long companion Felix. But we will support one another and get through this.

Love your pets, love each other. You never know what will happen.

If you feel inspired, please consider making a donation to the Humane Society of the United States. They did amazing work during Hurricane Katrina rescuing animals from the flood zone.

Please also check out Justin’s blog entry about Tiki. I’ve also created a Gallery of photos.

Gay Rights & Personal & Politics01 Mar 2005 10:46 pm

Tonight was my weekly segment on The David Lawrence Show, and we had a fun conversation about today being the first anniversary of Justin and my wedding in San Francisco City Hall, thanks to our hero Mayor Gavin Newsom.
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