Interesting front page story in the NYT this Sunday morning about President-elect Obama likely having to surrender his Blackberry and email privileges for the duration of his term due to security concerns and public information laws. At first I was reading the piece, saying “Boneheads. Email good. Luddites in government, bad.” Then the security concerns were cited and I suddenly thought it is maybe not such a good idea to have the Commander In Chief on the RIM network sending emoticons to the National Security Advisor: “Dude. Chechnya! WTF? Call me! (Go Sox)”

Still, for an administration that is releasing weekly “fireside chats” on YouTube, that is seeking a National CTO, and which delivered on the promise of technology first opened up by Joe Trippi and the Howard Dean campaign,  it seems utterly ass-hatted to take away email. But, unless a secure alternative can be developed, the president-to-be may be in the same boat the president-that-was found himself eight years ago when he sadly signed off of his AOL mail account and told his friends it was nice knowing them electronically.

Author: David Churbuck

Cape Codder with an itch to write

7 thoughts on “Email-in-chief”

  1. I would think there would be similar problems using cell phones. There must already be some heavy-duty encryption scheme for voice over air. I would think one could modify this to use email/data. No?

  2. FWIW, George Bush really never was into email, AOl or other. During the 2000 campaign, while I was at TechTV, we interviewed him.. I specifically asked him about email. He said that an aide carried a Dell computer around and did his email for him. His brother Jed was an avid emailer, and used to email Bush.. but Bush would only respond via a proxy.

    Forget email, though. What does this mean for twitter?

  3. They’ll have a staffer in the white house communications office updating Twitter no doubt. The big question – what type of message.

    Will it be – “Idaho peeps, pls. call your senators in support of the foobar bill” or will it be “The prez just ate a cheese sandwich…”

  4. Sorry, you can’t play “Hail to the Chief” to a person who uses a service with the word “twit” in it.

    Remember the old Whitehouse email system, the one that did in Ol’ Ollie North? Can’t get more “professional” than a system called PROFS.

  5. Ah … PROFS. A system designed to inflict torture upon corporate drones. My first email experience. Then onto Lotus Notes. I must have done something wrong is some other technological life to have those inflicted on me long term.

  6. Christa Avampato – The short of it: Writer. Health, education, and art advocate. Theater and film producer. Visual artist. Product geek. Proud alumnae of the University of Pennsylvania (BA) and the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia (MBA). Inspired by ancient wisdom & modern tech. Proliferator of goodness. Opener of doors. Friend to animals. Fan of creative work in all its wondrous forms. I use my business skills to create passion projects that build a better world. I’ve been called the happiest New Yorker, and I try hard to live up to that title every day. The long of it: My career has stretched across Capitol Hill, Broadway theatre, education, nonprofit fundraising, health and wellness, and Fortune 500 companies in retail, media, entertainment, technology, and financial services. I’ve been a product developer and product manager, theater manager, strategic consultant, marketer, voice over artist, , teacher, and fundraiser. I use my business and storytelling to support and sustain passion projects that build a better world. In every experience, I’ve used my sense of and respect for elegant design to develop meaningful products, services, programs, and events. While building a business career, I also built a strong portfolio as a journalist, novelist, freelance writer, interviewer, presenter, and public speaker. My writing has appeared in The Washington Post, The Huffington Post,,, Royal Media Partners publications, and The Motley Fool on a wide range of topics including business, technology, science, health, education, culture, and lifestyle. I have also been an invited speaker at SXSW, Teach for America, Avon headquarters, Games for Change, NYU, Columbia University, Hunter College, and the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America. The first book in my young adult book series, Emerson Page and Where the Light Enters, was acquired by a publisher and launched in November 2017. I’m currently working on the second book in the series. A recovering multi-tasker, I’m equally at home in front of my Mac, on my yoga mat, walking my rescue dog, Phineas, traveling with a purpose, or practicing the high-art of people watching. I also cut up small bits of paper and put them back together as a collage artist. My company: I’m bringing together all of my business and creative career paths as the Founder of Double or Nothing Media: • I craft products, programs, and projects that make a difference; • I build the business plans that make what I craft financially sustainable; • I tell the stories that matter about the people, places, and products that inspire me. Follow my adventures on Twitter at and Instagram at
    Christa Avampato says:

    Hi Chuck,
    The Obama fireside chats are a perfect way to fuse technology with a technique of the past that worked so well for FDR. It’s a great example of how technology can assit us rather than bog us down. Fireside Chats 2.0.

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