Wednesday, October 29, 2008

*UPDATE* Wilmer on the Web - My Bad???

We recently reported the receipt of Wilmer's first City Newsletter and published it as a public service. Unfortunately, we actually read it and tried some of the links and email addresses it contained. Now the City says there aren't any emails and it has no contract with the person or firm that registered http://cityofwilmer.org
* UPDATE * As a result of our report, the URL http://www.cityofwilmer.org has been disconnected and no longer responds to internet queries.


According to the Wilmer's First City Newsletter, there's a link for comments that reads: "Send Comments or suggestions to City Hall or www.wilmernews@cityofwilmer.org".

This is an invalid Internet email address, but it does resolve to the city's new web site home page. On that home page there's another email link to "info@cityofwilmer.org".

As a conscientious (not contentious) reporter, we directed a public information request email to the address on the web page, which was returned as undeliverable (meaning "not there" or "invalid"). We had also conducted a "WHOIS" search on the domain name to see who and where it was registered - typically this reveals the creator or "web master" over a web site. We attempted to contact the registrant by telephone, but were unsuccessful as no voice mail was available.

When our email was returned, we reissued it as a fax message to city hall. Click Here to View the Fax Public Information Request

Within hours we received a reply from city hall indicating that there had been no contract or payments to develop the web site with the individual/company that had registered the domain name. Further, that there were no city email addresses in existence.
Click Here to View the Response Fax message from City Hall

We contacted Acting Mayor Matias Leal to clarify the situation and are currently awaiting his response. We will dutifully update this report as the information becomes available.

If WPC "goofed" by publishing the newsletter in the first place, we'd like to know why it was sent before the information was correct and available. If, on the other hand, the city believed that Internet links published on paper wouldn't really be checked out, we have no interest in helping the city look stupid as that had already been successfully accomplished long before this publication's inception.

3 comments:

Josh & Jen said...

okay... wow.

www.wilmernews@cityofwilmer.org

From my point of view as a web designer, that's just funny. :-)

Josh

John said...

When the "Wilmer News" was composed, it was anticipated that we would have a City Website. This has not come to pass. I neglicted to delete the email address off of the "Wilmer News" This was entirely my fault and I apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

John Eggen

Editor Publisher said...

RE: John Eggen
First off, I think the first issue of the Wilmer News is truly fine - I got my hardcopy in the mail today and it looks great.
I did call Chief Wells to confirm the impounded money was going back to its' owner. ;-)

It looks like the intended website is going to be a great help to the city, the residents, and potential business. It IS a shame that the domain name is active but obviously not ready. One day I hope Wilmer does have a website - at least it looks like a great beginning. Perhaps the community working together can make it a reality. In the mean time, add a "splash" page that says coming soon - or even better, just load the Wilmer News PDF file as the home page. Let's talk offline.