People Who Net
146-5 Chrystal Te
Santa Cruz CA 95060-3654
Internal Revenue Service
c/o McCaslin Industrial Park
2 Cupania Circle Monterey Park CA 91755
Dear Ms Jules:
The answers to your 30 attachment questions, 6 computer-related questions, and 6 research questions follow. My signature as President, People Who Net is at the very end.
1. People Who Net is educational - people with psychiatric disabilities instruct each other and the community on useful and beneficial subjects about mental health and mental illness - and charitable - relieves the poor and distressed, works to eliminate prejudice and discrimination. The purpose of People Who Net is to use the Internet to provide self-help and peer-support to people with psychiatric disabilities, people who experience mood swings, fear, voices and visions. People Who Net does this by using e mail discussion lists and some related World Wide Web materials. E mail discussion lists, or lists, are managed by computer software programs that run the computer. The software programs have a command vocabulary - they call each e mail address that is part of the list a subscriber or member. They call adding a name to the collection of e mail addresses that makes up the list subscribing or joining. And they call the person that is in charge of that list and its subscribers an owner. Lists are a way to send an e mail message to one e mail address - the list name and address - that goes to many readers, the list members or subscribers. Despite the language of the software, there are no fees or memberships in the sense of joining an organization or paying dues. Subscribers use the e mail messages to contact each other, via the lists, to share information with each other about mental health services, symptoms, medications, accommodations, changes in disability benefits and laws related to work and disability benefits.
3. People Who Net is a self-help organization that does not charge to participate. People with psychiatric disabilities share with each other how to manage their lives and their diagnoses. There are no fees.
4. The tasks involved in managing a list are done by volunteers who are themselves list subscribers. The tasks include learning about how to send commands to the software and can include leading the e mail discussions.
5. The results of our research will be presented at mental health conferences and put on the Internet on a World Wide Web page. The Research and Publishing Checksheets and completed at the end of this list of questions.
6. Lyris is the name of a software program that manages e mail discussion lists. We will get that software from the Internet, make it run on a computer (install), name that computer lyris.peoplewho.net, and invite people with psychiatric disabilities to set up e mail discussion lists that use that computer to receive and send out the e mail. The software program saves all the messages in what it calls archives. Those old archived messages are available by using the World Wide Web. Since today Internet users look first on the World Wide Web, we will also associate with each e mail list information about it on the World Wide Web, a page. The Internet term peoplewho.net is called a domain. A domain name is like a brand name or a corporate name.
7. StateNet is the name of an e mail discussion list. We have state-specific lists for people with psychiatric disabilities in each state to talk about mental health services in their state. The state umbrella list sends occasional messages to each of the state-specific lists. So one message to the state umbrella list would go to all the subscribers of the lists for each state. The software calls the state umbrella list a parent list and the other lists child lists and sets up a hierarchical e mail structure so that one message to a parent list reaches all the people on the child lists and purges duplicates if some one is subscribed to more than one of the child lists.
8. The federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration calls users of mental health services consumers. We use that same terminology which has become standard in behavioral health care. Consumers are people with psychiatric disabilities, people diagnosed with serious and persistent mental illness. Consumers means mental health consumers. Sometimes the phrase used is consumer/survivor. Sometimes that is abbreviate to c/s.
9. We will reach out to the other mental health Internet resources and tell them we have Lyris software available and ask if they would like to use it with us and have an e mail discussion about a subject that interests them or to set up a support list, for instance for people who have depression.
10. The Lyris e mail management software calls the people who administer or manage lists owners. There are tasks involved and it is useful to talk with other people doing a similar job. There are some technical things to learn and sometimes there are skills to learn about guiding the e mail discussions. The owner support list will be a discussion about these tasks. No one needs to own or install Lyris to use our services. All a person needs is e mail access on their own computer, through a public library, through a mental health center. What Lyris and other software programs call owners are people with a certain kind of higher level e mail software computer access and computer privileges.
CONTAC - Consumer Operated National Technical Assistance Center - a consumer technical assistance center supported by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
NEC - National Empowerment Center - a consumer technical assistance center supported by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
NMHCSHC - National Mental Health Consumer Self Help Clearinghouse - a consumer
technical assistance center supported by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
KEN - Knowledge Exchange Network - a technical assistance center supported by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
PIE - Policy Information Exchange - an Internet mental health resource library at the Missouri Institute for Mental Health
MentalHealthNet - the Internet connection for WFMH - World Federation for Mental Health
These are resources that provide educational and charitable services.
12. An electronic dialogue is an e mail conversation, an exchange of typed messages. People Who Net is educational - instructs each other and the community on useful and beneficial subjects - and charitable - relieves the poor and distressed, works to eliminate prejudice and discrimination.
13. Coordinate means managing or directing. It means staying informed about which e mail lists exist at People Who Net and at other places on the Internet and disseminating that information. It also means sending e mail messages about conferences and meetings and available grants and other kinds of mental health news.
14. HSRI is the Human Services Research Institute, a contractor of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. HSRI runs four e mail discussion lists for mental health professionals and mental health consumers. When we are established, we will talk with them about analyzing how e mail lists are used in mental health and what success the lists have and maybe compare activities of lists for mental health professionals with list for mental health consumers.
15. Our organization has no members. The phrase means to consider whether People Who Net should become a member of other organizations, for instance whether People Who Net should join the World Federation of Mental Health.
16. The library is an Internet collection of electronic files that have already been sent to the e mail discussion lists. We plan to select some files, format them and make them available on the World Wide Web.
17. Gopher is the name of a software program that finds electronic files. It was popular before the World Wide Web and is rarely used today. We had some electronic files in a gopher collection, the MADNESS gopher, which is no longer available,. The files are now on a computer compact disk. We plan to select some of them and make them available again through a library on the World Wide Web.
18. C/s means consumer/survivor, language of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The Knowledge Exchange Network federal Technical Assistance Center has a database in place. We plan to ask SAMHSA if we can take over and operate that project. Some mental health consumers who want to be available to other, so theu submit their own names and some information as a database record.
19. We would like to not be dependent on grants and donations. We will explore selling Internet related tools or services to the mental health field to support our charitable and educational activities. We would make sure that any activity of this sort complied with IRS regulations.
20. Mental health consumers are often more comfortable with other mental health consumers. We might develop an introductory Internet training led by mental health consumers and offer it to community mental health centers and mental health support groups. This is another possible way to generate some income. Training has now become available for everyone on the Internet about the Internet so this may not be something we will do.
21. The Alternatives Conference is sponsored by SAMHSA. This years, in October in Texas, is I think the fourteenth. It is a conference planned and organized by mental health consumers for mental health consumers and it focuses on peer services, peer support, jobs and housing. We might apply for a SAMHSA conference grant to add a day onto the Alternatives conference, a pre- or post-conference meeting to have a day devoted to Internet issues - getting computers, getting Internet access, privacy.
22. There are many mental health conferences every year. Most of them send out a Call for Papers or a Call for Presentations. Some of the people who use People Who Net answer those Calls and are invited to make an educational presentation about what mental health consumers are doing on the Internet.
23. We might develop an introductory Internet training led by mental health consumers and offer it to community mental health centers and mental health support groups. A Master Trainer would train Trainers. Trainers would conduct on site Internet trainings. Demand for this activity is much less strong than it was. We will probably on do this on the Internet and not have these positions.
24. The federal Department of Education, through the National Institute on Disability Research and Rehabilitation, funds programs that might interest mental health consumers. People Who Net would find out about these and disseminate the information. The various state Departments of Rehabilitation offer plans and programs for going back to school, getting home computers, earning some while maintaining disability health benefits. People Who Net will share information about these by e mail.
25. We know we are reaching people with mood swings and helping them because people tell us this. People send messages to the e mail lists about how helpful the messages have been, about their mental health diagnosis and how they are managing their symptoms. People seem especially appreciative that the e mail messages are available all the time. People say typing in a message helps to define the situation and that in itself relieves stress and then a quick e mail reply from another person helps even more. People say the e mail messages ease the sense of isolation.
26. Yes, free of charge. No gross receipts.
27. So far, what we have done has been done by volunteers with their own computers and their own Internet access accounts. We have no expenses. We would like to expand, start to hire and pay some staff people. The first step is to have IRS approve our 501 c 3 status. Then we will apply to foundations or the government for some project grants. If we are awarded one, we will have a budget and expenses related to the project award.
28. People Who Net has no pamphlets, contracts, literature, brochures or any signed agreements.
29. The public street sign at the intersection says "Chrystal Te" so I use that on official material. I think it is not a mistake but another abbreviation for Terrace.
30. Ive tried to write this in lay terms. This is the first time Ive completed a 1023 and I submitted our actual work plan that we developed. Your questions made me realize how much mental health and computer jargon I was taking for granted.
Questions about activities involved with computers
2. We have no literary projects, tapes, or videos.
3. There are no such activities
4. If we had such materials, they would be distributed free or at actual cost.
5. We disseminate material from e mail discussions through the Internet, through e mail discussion lists and through the World Wide Web.
6. We do not plan to file for any formal copyrights.
1. We are planning to write some computer software to count how many people send messages to various e mail lists and what subjects generate more or few messages.
2. Research projects are determined by the interests of people who read and write to the e mail lists. If someone has an idea that they post to everyone else in a message and there is some interest, they develop the idea and we see if there is someone who might fund that idea. There isnt any formal determination and selection process.
3. We have no plans to have contract or sponsored research or contracts or grants.
4. Any results would be made available on the Internet and be part of conference presentations if invited. There would be no organization or timing preference.
5. If there were any patents, copyrights, processes or formulas they would belong to People Who Net or the grantor and that would be specified by in the grant contract. We have none of these now.
6. We have no reports of People Who Net research activities.
Sylvia Caras, President
People Who Net
146-5 Chrystal Te
Santa Cruz CA 95060-3654