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Re: !! *Very* important Oracle-L message !!

From: Jeremiah Wilton <>
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 2001 09:15:35 -0700
Message-ID: <>

On my web page I maintain an payments paybox, which is for collecting anonymous donations. I think if Bruce sets up a paybox for each list he hosts free of charge, and included a pledge request in the list footers, there will be a steady stream of donations.

Amazon calls this the "Honor System," and it can be found at:

It is basically like paypal, etc, but you can put the paybox inline with any HTML, and it allows anonymous donations. The fee to Amazon is 15% of the total payment per transaction plus 15 cents.

I work for Amazon, so feel free to flame me for shamelessly promoting my own product as a solution to this. As an act of contrition, I promise to pay US$50 into any form of collection that Bruce sets up, Amazon or not.

Jeremiah Wilton

On Wed, 29 Aug 2001, Anjan Thakuria wrote:

> Can we just start pledging ..We have got to keep this form going under. Ideas
> > -----Original Message-----
> > Sent: 28 August 2001 23:29
> > To: Multiple recipients of list ORACLE-L
> >
> > Ok, now that I have your attention, please read the following message from
> > Bruce Bergman,
> > owner of It concerns the future of this list.
> >
> > Please read the entire message before replying.
> >
> > -------------------------------------------
> >
> > Hello ORACLE-L list members --
> >
> > I would like to take a few minutes of your time for a "State of the Union"
> > address, if you can call it that. This is a rather serious message, and I
> > request that you take the time to read this message entirely. I've got a
> > problem that needs resolution this week, and I'm hoping you folks can help
> > me come to a conclusion. This message turned out to be fairly
> > long-winded, so please excuse me for that. :-)
> >
> > Fat City ( is my company, and I am the provider of the list
> > services that you receive ORACLE-L through. I've been hosting Internet
> > mailing lists for over 10 years, and carry quite a few lists, including a
> > big selection of Oracle-related lists (14, in fact). Fat City has always
> > been a labor of love for me. Over the years it has rarely generated any
> > income at all, and it usually does not cover my expenses -- most of the
> > time
> > it is a monthly loss for me. The vast majority of my 60+ mailing lists
> > have
> > been hosted for free, at my expense (as is the ORACLE-L list, for example).
> > Yet I have absorbed these costs because I enjoy hosting discussion lists
> > and I know a lot of lists can't afford to pay for quality service.
> >
> > I am soon to be one of the Rhythms Orphans. Rhythms, my DSL provider, has
> > gone bankrupt and will be out of business by 10-Sep-2001. I need to find
> > another provider of high-speed Internet in order to continue operations. I
> > am at the point of either folding shop completely and going out of business
> > myself, or trying to make Fat City a viable, money-making endeavor. I need
> > to make this decision by this Friday (for financial and planning reasons).
> > After Friday, I am committed one way or the other.
> >
> > My upstream ISP and I are on very good terms, and in fact, I've been a
> > customer of theirs since 1985! As a result, they have graciously offered
> > to help me out of this situation at considerable expense to themselves.
> > I'm not at liberty to discuss the terms of the contract I would engage in
> > with them, but suffice to say that is one of those once-in-a-lifetime
> > opportunities that I'd be a fool to pass up. I have this offer personally
> > from the President of that company, if I want it. Simply said, my ability
> > to take them up on their offer and switch Fat City over to a dedicated T1
> > or
> > better solution revolves around being able to generate quite a bit of
> > additional
> > income per month, and very soon. In an effort to be open and up-front with
> > you folks about this, I basically need to generate an additional $500 more
> > per
> > month. Right now that seems daunting, but I've been working hard to line up
> > that
> > additional income, and I believe I can do it. Just not right away. My
> > estimates are that it will take me four or five months to come up to that
> > level. I need to get out there and sell website hosting and list hosting
> > packages, and get new customers. That takes time, unfortunately. I need a
> > buffer to enable me to get past this startup phase.
> >
> > After some discussions with Jared (the list owner), and some encouragement
> > from him, I am coming to you to ask for you help in keeping Fat City
> > financially afloat until I can be self sufficient. I'm not asking for a
> > specific dollar amount from anyone, nor am I *expecting* anything from you
> > folks. But if it is within your power to contribute some money towards
> > this
> > end (and yes, I know these are hard financial times for everyone), I am
> > hoping you can help. If I can get sufficient promise of funds that will
> > see
> > me through the next few months, I am willing to jump in with both feet and
> > make Fat City a viable business. If it looks like the contributions are
> > not
> > sufficient to enable me to do that, I will cease operations within the next
> > 45-60 days.
> >
> > Let me be clear about a few things: If I *do* cease operations, I will give
> > all of my lists time to find new list providers, and will make every effort
> > to aid the shift over to the new provider, provide list dumps, archives,
> > mail forwarding, etc. Even though Rhythms goes out of business on
> > 10-Sep-2001, I have secured service until at least 10-Oct-2001 to enable
> > this to happen. So don't worry about having to rush into your conversion
> > if
> > things don't work out. I would also like to clearly state that this is not
> > some attempt to blackmail or coerce anyone into coming up with money. This
> > will either succeed or fail based on what you folks can comfortably and
> > willingly contribute. If I had the ability to cover this startup period
> > myself,
> > I would definitely do so. If Fat City ultimately goes under, it wil NOT be
> > your fault, and I hold no one to blame. That's just how the Internet cards
> > are right now. I do not want anyone to contribute if they don't have
> > the money, or if things are tight at home, or anything like that. I would
> > like contributions to be made from those who are able to make such a
> > contribution willingly.
> >
> > Also, I don't want anyone to send any money right now. Basically I just
> > want a show of hands of those who could contribute something to this cause.
> > Send me ( or Jared ( an E-mail saying
> > what amount you'd be willing to contribute. If you would rather donate
> > anonymously, perhaps Jared could collect those donations. I will "pass
> > around the hat" until Friday morning, at which point I'll see if there were
> > sufficient pledges to enable me to move forward. If it seems like there
> > is,
> > then I will come up with a way for you to honor your pledge (probably
> > either
> > directly to me via check or via PayPal, most likely). The funds can be
> > collected in the next few weeks, but I must make my decision on Friday. I
> > apologize for the late notice on this, but I was not given this offer by my
> > ISP until late last week.
> >
> > In return for your contributions, I promise the following things:
> >
> > - I will use all contributions ONLY for the express purpose of paying for
> > my
> > Internet service costs
> > - I will continue to host the ORACLE-L list for free for the forseeable,
> > indefinite future
> > - I will make no more requests of this list for contributions of this sort
> > - I will provide a full accounting and update to the list on the costs and
> > how the funds are being used
> > - I will make improvements to the list that will enhance your features and
> > performance (for example, faster turn-around on list postings, etc)
> > - I will at least carry though for the next calendar year unless I have
> > catastrophic financial failure
> >
> > Please note that the ODTUG organization is already making a considerable
> > contribution by way of a monthly payment for service, so they are already
> > aware of this situation and are actively helping out. There are a good
> > number of people here who are on the ODTUG lists too, so I wanted to point
> > that out ahead of time and let you know that they are being very helpful.
> >
> > Another way you could contribute would be to come to Fat City for your list
> > hosting or website hosting needs. I had just started offering website
> > hosting services before this mess started, and obviously, a monthly paying
> > customer is far better than a one-time contribution. If you go to
> > and click on the "Website Hosting" link, you can
> > check out the packages I offer. In an effort to get new customers, I am
> > willing to waive all setup fees in order to bring new customers on board.
> > If you become a customer here in the next couple of months, that would help
> > tremendously. If you have an interest in hosting your website (personal or
> > business) with us, -or- a want to start a new mailing list, please contact
> > me for details.
> >
> > I know this is a lot to ask of you folks. You are entirely welcome to just
> > tell me to jump in a lake, and that that's how business is right now. But
> > I
> > know many of you personally, either from ODTUG conferences or from other
> > Oracle events, and I also know how staunchly you support this mailing list
> > with useful information, humor, helpfulness and an eye toward quality. I
> > would like to think that you find Fat City to be the best place to host
> > your
> > list, and that you will want to help me out so that I can continue to
> > provide the list to you folks free of charge. I made a promise to Jared
> > years ago to host this list for free because I think it is one of the best
> > and most valuable resources out there. I intend to honor that promise to
> > him by continuing to provide it for free. If it turns out that I must
> > close
> > shop and call it quits, at least I will have known I did my best to make it
> > succeed, and I did so without having to reneg on committments I had
> > made in the past.
> >
> > I am being open and honest with everyone because I believe that this is the
> > best way to succeed. I believe you appreciate this kind of approach, and I
> > want you to know that regardless of what happens, I certainly appreciate
> > every consideration you give this request. Whether or not this succeeds, I
> > know that you are a great group of people and I wish this list the best
> > luck
> > in this life, or the next. :-)
> >
> > Remember, time is of the essence. The sooner I hear from people who
> > can help, the sooner I can nail down a line of approach. If you have any
> > questions or concerns, please E-mail me.
-- Please see the official ORACLE-L FAQ: -- Author: Jeremiah Wilton INET: Fat City Network Services -- (858) 538-5051 FAX: (858) 538-5051 San Diego, California -- Public Internet access / Mailing Lists -------------------------------------------------------------------- To REMOVE yourself from this mailing list, send an E-Mail message to: (note EXACT spelling of 'ListGuru') and in the message BODY, include a line containing: UNSUB ORACLE-L (or the name of mailing list you want to be removed from). You may also send the HELP command for other information (like subscribing).
Received on Wed Aug 29 2001 - 11:15:35 CDT

Original text of this message