Dear WGNA eList community,
Ever since the WGNA eList was founded over a decade ago, there has been ambiguity as to its affiliation with the Willow Glen Neighborhood Association. (As I was on the WGNA Board for much of that time, I’m afraid I may have added to the confusion.) The eList was founded as “the electronic equivalent of talking to your friends and neighbors over the back fence”, but it was also used for the sharing of WGNA notices. However, this can be confusing, since not all WGNA members are on the eList, and (as the eList is six times larger than WGNA) apparently most eList users are not members of WGNA.
To simplify and clarify matters, we are now splitting the WGNA eList in two -- the WGNA half and the eList half: Notices@WGNA.net and eList@WGBackfence.net. The WGNA eList itself will be discontinued: messages sent there will receive a reminder to use one or the other (or both) of the new addresses.
Other than the address you write to, you do not have to make any changes: you have been automatically subscribed to both lists. Both have privacy policies, both at the present have comparable rules and guidelines, and both are free and non-commercial. A subcommittee of the WGNA Board will administer and moderate the WGNA list; I, with support of Suzy, Helen, and Curt, will continue administering and moderating the WGBackfence eList. To ease this transition, I’ve offered training to the WGNA subcommittee, and Suzy has offered to assist with administration during the transition period should you wish to leave either or both of the lists.
WGNA was founded in 1973. During the twenty years that I served on the Board, I saw the Association work on quite a number of remarkable things, including the master plan for the Los Gatos Creek Trail, the founding of the WG Business Association and the establishment of annual street fairs, the revitalization of Lincoln Avenue, the Urban Stream Restoration Project along the Los Gatos, a presence on the internet even before there was a World-Wide-Web, and the publication of the Historic Walking Tour book. The Association also worked with the City on development policies (historic preservation, the “monster house” ordinance, tree protection, riparian (streamside) setbacks, etc.), and with developers on numerous projects (Tamien, midTown, Longs Drugs, various housing in-fills, et al.). With all the development activity (e.g., the Stadium, High Speed Rail, BART, and numerous high-density developments) being contemplated in the vicinity of Willow Glen, an active and vibrant WGNA is critical: I urge you to join the Association (go to www.wgna.net for details).
The eList will be hosted on a new website I’ve established: www.WGBackfence.net. This is a personal website -- I alone am responsible for its contents -- but I am grateful for the continued support of my support team. We will continue to run the eList on the WGBackfence.net website, as before, in the spirit of celebrating Willow Glen. With the autonomy reaffirmed by the independent website hosting, we will be able to better maintain the friendly and informative home-town back-fence conversational atmosphere for which makes the eList such a collegial (if virtual) place. Quotable recommendations made over the WGBackfence will continue to be collected and added to the updated Community Recommendations webpage on WGBackfence.net.
I look forward to this change. Free of the ambiguity, the WGNA Board will have control over what is posted on their list, and on the WGBackfence eList I will finally feel free to more fully participate in the sharing of thoughts and opinions without having to maintain strict neutrality.
If you Google "Ames Almanack", you'll find a book by Dr. Nathaniel Ames, my (8x)great-grand-cousin, twice removed (and fellow physicist!) who in the mid-1700's published a “cyclopedia of information and amusement, a vehicle for the conveyance to the public of all sorts of knowledge and nonsense, in prose and verse, from literature, history, and his own mind; all presented with brevity, variety and infallible tact.” I intend to carry on this old family tradition on the host website, WGBackfence.net: I hope to use it to share community information and commentary.
We hope to make this transition as smooth as possible, and we hope this clarifies the duality of the former WGNA eList.
~Larry Ames, (former) Moderator of the WGNA eList.