Thursday, 16 March 2017

Changing Email

The king is dead. Long live the king!

After more than 26 years, I no longer own the RAMA.COM domain. It has been transferred to new owners and I no longer have my old, original email address. I first acquired this domain in 1995, shortly before the arrival of Windows95. Already but this time I had been using this new “Internet” for research and email. Over the years I have used Uniserve for email routing as well as hosting my own email for a long time. At the peak of my technology usage, I had a full server room in my basement with multiple servers and full backup systems, all racked up neat and tidy.

Alas, times have changed and so has my life. Forced retirement thanks to ALS has meant I no longer need, nor have need of, major technologies. The value of the RAMA.COM domain, given my financial state, was such that selling it was the smart thing to do. So I did. My original agreement with the purchasers was that I would have access to for the remainder of my life. However there is no contract for this; it would appear their server side has changed, meaning I no longer have access to that email. So I am compelled to change.

This is a challenging change in some ways, one of so many in my life. It is another example of how having ALS has forced me to make changes I would otherwise not have to make. Without ALS, I would still be working and would not be interested in selling my RAMA.COM domain, regardless of price, until price got ridiculously stupid high. Now, however, the money is more important than the domain. I am living longer than expected; that costs money.

The reason behind the challenge in this change is that after so many years, "" is embedded almost everywhere in my online life. It is my login for many accounts. It is my online presence, even for this blog. I have changes all over the place which will have to be made over time. Things will break. Things will fail. Corrections will have to be made. Lots of them. It's work and effort I don't need.

The emotional stuff is secondary in this case. Yes, has been me for a long time. But not really. I am still who I am. Only my online name is changing. I will still be Richard McBride. I will still be "rmcbride" in my email address. Only my domain has changed. But that's it, really. It used to be MY domain. Now it is no longer. It seems I am losing something else which has been mine for a long time, thanks to this damned disease. I am so tired of this process.

On the plus side, my new email address is in place and working. I have contacted those people in my email address book who need the new address. My blog will still be here. Facebook will need only a minor change, along with NetFlix and a few other online accounts. Everything else will change organically. When it breaks, I will fix it, most likely with only a few keystrokes. At least this change is virtual, not physical. Once I get the corrections done, it will remain stable. I am grateful for that.


  1. You don't have to have ALS to experience the loss of identity via the web. I founded and Terry joined 5 years later and provided significant help in building a small, successful, customer service business. We sold it to family but still, they rebranded and removed us from the website. We just no longer exist. It's been a huge loss for us but mostly for me since it came from my life and I feel I gave it birth. It's now gone. It's nothing compared to the losses that Terry has experienced with ALS and there's no comparison but it just hit me reading your post that identity losses happen with and without disease. Divorce. Even retirement. Sell the business (as you did your domain name). Poof! There you go! Absolutely no evidence that you existed, that you contributed, that you birthed and carried an important career that affected lives, provided a living for a staff, gave companies better customer service ratings, fulfilled your soul. So the loss isn't so much "thanks to this damned disease" - perhaps it feels that way and is in part the reality. I would not rob you of your feelings. But would RAMA always be yours? Always be You? At what point did it need to be somewhere else? I'm a PALS ... I lose a bit of Terry everyday. I see the exit door advancing and can't stop it. My superpowers don't include curing ALS and as someone who loves Terry deeply, everything in me says it's part of my job to protect him ... I can't. ALS is relentless. So take all that for what it's worth and grace for me if it offends you. I too feel my identity has been lost; erased; scrubbed away. Peace

    1. Wonderfully, well said. I get it. Clearly so do you.