RIP Eric Ward #URLwire www. Pioneer link building expert

The search industry lost a legend. Eric Ward link building pioneer and search industry expert who taught all of us  died Monday, October 16. He was only 58 years old.

They buried Eric and I just wanted to share some personal memories about the man who was a true www pioneer with outstanding morals and sense of purpose who generously helped everyone including me.

Eric was just a superb human being! and  if you read the information below and aren’t familiar with who he was you’ll begin to understand the enormous impact he had on the net. He was a mensch.

Eric looked out for me aka the Educational CyberPlayGround, Inc. by looking out for another www pioneer named Gleason Sackmann the originator of Nethappenings  Newsletter TM ©1989  and other mailing lists that he managed from Jan. 1993 to 2004. Eric knew Gleason’s work and used to post his own URLwire K12 news to Gleason’s Lists.

Gleason also published announcements of brand new K12 school websites in the US. Folks sent that website information to Gleason who now had a list of the first K-12 websites ever built in America known as the  “K12 Hotlist of Schools” ©1993 which was an online public #folklife project built by the nation and is now in it’s <3rd life> published using open source code on the

Gleason was another mensch. He was an  mailing list builder and retired in 2004. At that time he asked me to take over the database and his mailing Lists. I talked with Eric about this whole transition and he was very supportive and offered his encouragement and advice. He even gave the domain to me – having thought to buy it a long time  before  Gleason retired in order to protect  it – for Gleason’s sake. Talk about foresight, and generosity of spirit!!  Ever heard of anyone doing that for someone else? No you haven’t. That is the kind of man Eric was – He did that.

First to wire North Dakota’s K-16 schools to the internet #10 on Newsweek’s prestigious List of “50 People Who Matter Most on the Internet.” Newsweek, Dec 25, 1995 / Jan. 1, 1996

  • In 1994, we did not include wireless in the prescription for the infrastructure. Most of the work that I know about was done by Gleason Sackman who wired the K12 Schools in North Dakota and Dave Hughes (Crystal Radio Sets / Ham Radios) , who was supported by the National Science Foundation and was started and finished after this initial document was done. And the School systems applying for the Erate, may need the ability to use wireless for a variety of reasons.
  • 1992-1996 Top of the page Net Scout Project, InterNIC and UW-Madison Department of Computer Sciences
  • 1998 awarded SIG/Tel Educational Telecomputing Outstanding Service Award.
  • Began listening to shortwave broadcasts in 1956.

Memories of Eric:

Years and years ago Eric and I spoke about the way things were going after he refused to allow google to buy him out. He questioned that decision, and it worried him.

I’m glad he didn’t sell out. He was the one who always preached to site developers to link to what is best for people NOT for a machine and certainly not just for the sake of profit!

Remember the google statement “Do No Evil”?  Turns out it was Eric who had principles. He didn’t want google to be evil or have any racist machine algo be in control of  what Americans read, learned, and then believed  just for (insert name here) profit!

To Big to Nail? To Big To Jail? Do no evil – yea sure .. SHAME  on Russian Emigrant Sergi Brin whose net worth was $37.9 billion in 2016, and as well all know the Russians penetrated U.S. voter systems, top U.S. officials say

Eric Ward was THE example of a straight up guy and what we wish SEA search engine behavior was about.

All the lawyers and lobbyists the SE’s money have down in Washington trying to  worm they traitorous ways out of the trouble they have caused  Americans won’t change how their racist lousy algos distorted the election and promoted fake news.  Sergi, Jack, Zuck et al all have the data that shows what happened! They have been active participants in Moscow’s information warfare against the United States.

We need to have laws to reign them in,  tax them,  control what are allowed to accept for advertising money,  force them to turn over the election data they have right now and get judges to jail them.

A free internet doesn’t mean free to make more money being evil. There are consequences in this world for that.

Eric Ward a www pioneer was a man among men, the man who wouldn’t sell out and should have been in charge of the ways search engines at #alphabet #facebook #google #twitter #youtube #linkedin  etal conducted themselves.
Trump defends tweets as key to White House victory

Eric’s passing is heart breaking for all of us who have been  building websites for over 25 years under the tyrannical thumb of machines owned by Sergi Brinn et al. since 1998.

RIP Eric Ward, he was a true man of the net and in all ways that he conducted his business and  his life. I’m proud to have known him and shared time with him on this journey.


Eric Ward says “NetHappenings and K12 Newsletters is designed to reach the educational marketplace, thus reaching administrators, principals, and teachers at a great price!”

Search community mourns loss of veteran link builder Eric Ward

April 6 1997 URL Wire first recorded in the wayback machine
” My contacts know me, trust me, and cover the Web related news I send them. Like I have been since 1994.”

Online since 1991 Educational CyberPlayGround®  launched on July 9, 1998 recorded by the wayback machine in 1999.

©The Hot list of Schools online was the  first list of  the K12 schools URL’s  made in the United States. It started in 1993. Folks  sent their URL info to Gleason who announced it on his NetHappenings mailing list the first and oldest K-12 Mailing list in the world started in 1989.

Example:  Arbor Heights Elementary in Seattle, Washington was either the 9th or 10th elementary school with a web site in the world and started August 14, 1996

I launched the Hotlist database  on the Educational CyberPlayGround July 9, 1998. This was the first one in the United States up online. It is a public folklore project and K12 Internet History. giving everyone the ability to search and find a school’s website or if they even had one! Since then folks have kept submitting their school info and urls to me. And believe it or not every submission was checked for accuracy by me.

Announcing a New Web Source editors, writers, and reporters can contact me.It’s been 20 years and we needed to get things up to speed so and the project has morphed again using open source Linux and Drupal.  We thought it best to migrate everything to a new home and the first Hot List of Schools online list has now become the  ©The Hot list of Schools online but there is still a lot left to do.

Eric was a legend part of the net DNA so Raise a Glass:

I think he would have been the first one I told about this project when I was ready… but it’s too late. With his Library and Information Systems / White hat background, I know he would have loved to know this nethappening is still alive!

Everybody Sing: Don’t it always seem to go
That you don’t know what you’ve got
Till it’s gone.
 Joni Mitchell

The search industry has lost a legend. Eric Ward, who many knew as the link building pioneer “Link Moses” and taught so much to so many, died Monday, October 16 2017. He was 58 years old.  Ward was, in my mind (and the minds of many in this industry) synonymous with link building. For many, he was the expert in all things link building. ~ Danny Goodman

About Educational CyberPlayGround, Inc.®

Educational CyberPlayGround, Inc. strives to help Teachers, Parents, and Policy Makers Learn about: Music, Teaching, Internet, Technology, Literacy, Arts and Linguistics in the K12 classroom.
This entry was posted in NetHappenings. Bookmark the permalink.

What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s