Virtual Memorials Run Well

Virtual MemorialsMaui Tree

In the past few months I’ve been asked to help with 3 virtual services. Here are a few of the things I’ve learned. If you would like my help with a virtual memorial please reach out.  

  1. Probably as with the rest of life, every virtual experience is different and none of them go perfectly. As much as you practice and prepare know that there will be hiccups. They probably do something to humanize the experience rather than put a dent in it. That said, mostly I’ve seen these events be really sweet experiences where people share what they loved about their loved one. Participants have come away surprised at what a lovely experience a virtual memorial can be. 
  2. Do hold a tech run-through – try out things like sharing the screen to show a slideshow and practice spotlighting people and muting people if it’s going to be a big group so that the main person speaking can be heard.
  3. Make sure that the main person who is overseeing the event understands well how to use Zoom or whatever platform you’re using. Also, ideally, hand this role off to a professional or at least not someone who is close to the loved one – so they can experience the memorial and relax into it. 
  4. Know that the event will probably go better than you can imagine. People will share in all sorts of unexpected ways. Every time I’ve run one of these I’ve noticed that the events have a natural flow and really seem satisfying to the people who attend. 
  5. Given that not everyone is an expert with Zoom, it makes sense to hold a short training session early on in the event. In this I highlight how one can change or add their name if they want to; how to use the chat feature; how to turn off one’s video so that connectivity is improved in some cases; how to mute oneself; how to raise your hand; and different ways of viewing – speaker vs. gallery view, for instance. As Zoom continues to change, so does the short tutorial. 
  6. Decide in advance whether you want to record the session or not – and perhaps let participants know if they’re being recorded. 


“We hired Albert to help our family host a Celebration of Life Zoom service for my mother in law. We needed to get organized quickly and invited over 100 people to attend and share stories. We also wanted a live music element. Albert could not have been more skilled and helpful every step of the way. He pulled off a seamless event; and he was lovely to work with. We couldn’t be more grateful! Highly recommend using his services.”  
“Albert helped facilitate a virtual memorial service for my Uncle. It was such a relief to not have to worry about the technology during the service and to have his support for new Zoom users at the service. Albert has a solid understanding of Zoom’s setting and options and helped improve the event. He was kind and responsive and a huge help during a challenging time.”

From the Songwriter Soiree Website – some tips on using Zoom.


Using Zoom for the First Time? Here is a good INTRODUCTION VIDEO on how to join a meeting!

  1. MAKE SURE YOU ARE MUTED (you will be muted upon entry).

  2. Top right of screen: speaker view or gallery view – try those out.

  3. You can click on a person’s square and pin them – then you’ll see them big.

  4. At the bottom is a chat function – you can use that to chat with others individually or everyone at once.

  5. Zoom usually works better using a laptop or desktop over a phone – and on a computer it likes the Chrome browser. With a phone you don’t get all the bells and whistles you would get with the other devices.

  6. Please keep your camera steady.

  7. Confidentiality is important – and I’ll always remind people of this. No screen-shots, no recording. (unless there is consent by the whole group).

  8. If you come in late or don’t quite get the instructions, try your best to listen and follow along 🙂

  9. Scroll around on the screen and see what you see and teach yourself how to use Zoom. Like many programs – it works differently on different platforms. Don’t get hung up on the tech – notice who’s speaking and focus on that.


  1. Use just one mic for both guitar and voice. Using more than one input causes phase cancellation of common frequencies.

  2. Before joining, make the following adjustments to your ZOOM audio:

  3. Go to your ZOOM preferences>settings>Audio. Uncheck “Automatically adjust microphone settings.” (test this out).

  4. Go to Preferences>Settings>Audio>Advanced>Audio Processing: Under “Suppress Persistent Background Noise” AND Suppress Intermittent Background Noise” Select “DISABLE.”

  5. Also check “Show in meeting option to “Enable Original Sound” from microphone. You will then have an option on your Zoom chats on the top left of the screen. Press “Enable Original Sound” during the meeting to use your sound setup the way you intended. Try it out first and have someone hear the difference. It’s a big one.

  6. Now you will see a button in the upper-left corner during the meeting, which lets your turn Original Sound on or off. We recommend you turn it on when you will be playing an instrument. You may need to turn it off when you are speaking or singing without playing an instrument.

  7.  Start your own meeting in the App and record yourself.   When you end the meeting, the software will compile a video that you can watch and listen to.  You will only sound as good online as that recording. Make audio input adjustments to reduce distortion and test again.

  8. Please consider doing a test beforehand with another friend using zoom to test your sound.

  9. Play around with volume and or position from the mic to get the best sound.

  10. What has worked well for many: Using a Mac audio interface for audio input with a good quality microphone with compression and EQ being applied through interface software. But use what you have! The built in mic can be just fine.


The Timber Industry of Today Part 1-5 – Logging in Oregon

Here’s a 5-part series from Vernonia’s Voice.  Enjoy

VoicePt1Timber2020 – August 20th, 2020





Do you Like Mitch McConnell and what he’s done to the United States?

Mitch McConnell has got to Go. Let’s help.

It’s time to send Mitch McConnell packing. The senator from Kentucky has had a stranglehold on the US Senate for years. He’s broken the Senate pretty much and it will take years for that body to come back to being a more useful place that works for US citizens. We suddenly have a slim chance to remove Senator McConnell from his perch via 2 senate run-off elections happening in Georgia right now.

Senator McConnell stands in the way of pretty much everything I believe in. Nature. Women’s Rights. Black Lives Matter. Equal pay. Fighting for living things to survive the climate crisis. Please contact people you know in Georgia and encourage them to vote. This is probably the most important election in our lifetimes. Yep, that important.

Thank you – feel free to wake up other friends of yours who might have friends and family in Georgia.  Winning this election for Jon Ossoff and Reverend Raphael Warnock will lead to a brighter future for all of us. Please take a moment to make a difference.


Georgia on My Mind

The upcoming election in Georgia will set the tone and pace of how our lives go for the next two years. If we win the 2 senate seats – Jon Ossoff and Reverend Raphael Warnock – we’ll have a little better chance to get serious about the climate crisis. So many things will be possible that will be blocked by Mitch McConnell and his cronies if Georgia votes Republican in these races. Let’s all help get out the vote in Georgia for the next few days.

The day after I was aware that there were to be two senate runoff seats in Georgia I decided to do some things to win these seats for Democrats. Here’s why and some guidance about what you can still do to help.

I’m a musician, so whenever I’m asked to contribute my mind goes to music. Georgia on my Mind has been an ongoing theme for many during this upcoming election. I’m also a marketing guide – so my main mode is email newsletters. So, I combined the two.

Here are the four newsletters I’ve sent to my list and tried to send further as well via social media.

  1. If you didn’t know, now you know
  2. See possibilities, dear Georgia – John and Eecole write a song
  3. Featuring an awesome Broadway for Georgia
  4. You’re getting very Peachy

​This is Important

For the children

For your neighbors

For you

​Get busy!

For lots more information on these two races and how you and your friends can get involved, click here.

Please copy the url of this post and share it on social media:

Credit: HTML help from Dan Kaufman at DKG Promotions

Editing: Hannah Kaufman



LunchClub. Have you tried it? I’ve had 23 meetings with somewhat random people set up by LinkedIn in the past 2 months since it began. I’m sure it’s possible to match with someone and have something cool come of it. And.. I’d much rather be doing this with people in my community. In case you want to try out LunchClub, there’s a link to it below. If you want to try out LunchClub with me, visit my website and set up a 15 minute appt. with me and we’ll take it from there. 

LunchClub: – I get nothing by inviting you, btw. But you might 

Albert’s website:

I just figured out an aspect of this service that’s reminiscent of a Black Mirror episode. Once you’ve had a meeting with someone you have the ability to send out a note about how the meeting went. That can then be tweeted from their interface. But there’s more. I believe your “review” of the meeting also gets sent to anyone who accepted your invitation to Lunchclub, thus potentially turning it into a marketing vehicle for both you and the person you met with. 

1.18.2021 = there is now a LunchClub “Your Network Strength” rating. See mine @


ASC Webinar Series Ep #16: How To Shape Your Social Sphere

Making Change

How to Effect Change in our World

An explanation of my processes, by Albert Kaufman

There are many ways to effect change in the world. You can talk to one person or many with your idea and if you’re persuasive and your idea is a good one you may be able to see a positive result. I have been an activist since I was a teenager (born in 1961), but in the last 20 years or so I have been weaving what I have been learning as a digital marketing professional with what I have learned previously through various organizing efforts I’ve participated in and led. If I had written this even a year ago it would have been a different article, but now it’s 2020 and things are coming into focus for me in a new way. I hope you like. Feel free to take any of this and try it out for yourself and get back to me. I also am always open to feedback – so, add something in the comments section below or send me your thoughts directly.  

  1. Pick something you want to see changed. This is something I learned from Harvey Jackins who started Re-evaluation Counseling. Pick one thread. Dedicate some time to pulling on that thread – possibly for the rest of your life. Usually, for me, this has been something that has bothered me. I imagine that’s a driver for many people. Or, maybe it’s something you’d like to prevent from happening – the climate crisis comes to mind. One of the first issues that really caught my attention and that I have kept high on my list is population growth. Once I learned about ZPG in 1995 that was the thread for me – and I’ve been pulling ever since. But I think for the purposes of this article I’m going to choose a topic that’s smaller and that I’m actively working on today – Eliminating the use of gas-powered leaf blowers. Do I think that the world has too many people and that that is a major driver of many other problems we face?  Yes. But something that will immediately improve my life and those around me is ridding the world of the nuisance that is gas-powered leaf blowers. So, I will continue on with that topic. 
  2. Do some research and see who is doing what on the topic. If you’re wanting to effect change locally, you might find either: someone once started something and then dropped it; someone started something and it’s still going or – someone started something and there is an effort already underway. But, be prepared to become the driver of the movement. Because that’s what it takes. To really make change you have to put yourself in there. I’ve made this mistake in the past – joining a group that once existed, and it took me a while to realize that no one was really pulling the oars anymore. So, once you’ve sussed out where the issue is, get ready for action.
  3. Start an email list. What this can also be called is an email newsletter. Yes, you can start a Facebook page or group, but really, you’ll want a way that you can send your growing group of supporters information from time to time and thus suss out who might be interested in joining your effort and what their level of interest and strengths are. Personally, I use Constant Contact (affiliate link). I’ve been a partner of theirs since 2008 and have spent years teaching small businesses and nonprofits how to create newsletters and build email lists. That said, any ESP will do. Here is a list of some of the others. I’ve written newsletters over the years which explain why email marketing is one of the highest ROI’s in digital marketing. It’s probably the highest. The main reason is that when you send a newsletter to an interested audience (people who have signed up to receive the news) the open rates are often very high. For my/our effort to eliminate leaf blowers in Portland, Oregon an open rate of our newsletter of 60-80% is not unusual. 
  4. Build your Email List.  Here are some of the common ways to do that: Figure out a link for people to sign up for the newsletter – add that to your email signature – post it to any social media you might also have for your effort – create an autoresponder so that when someone signs up for your list they receive a welcome note that has action steps they can take – create a newsletter and get ready to send it out. This link can also be placed on your website and in any communication you make on the topic, for instance on
  5. Once you have this system in place you can continue to build your list through other tools such as online polls and online surveys. Polls can include a newsletter sign-up link and/or can be sent as an update to signors. Surveys are a fantastic way to further segment your list to find out more about who is there and what they are available to do. Eventually, you will have people drawn to your cause and you can continue to think of further ways to organize your efforts. By this time you may have also found other people who are as committed to the issue as you are, but don’t ever count heavily on people staying with the issue as you are doing. That will just lead to disappointment – peoples’ interest rises and falls – you have to be the steady one. If you do find others who are as excited as you are about the effort – try to start gathering with them regularly. Currently, that’s going to be virtually – but that’s fine and works!As you go, you may find a way to train others in what you’ve learned along the way, but you may need to stay leader for a long time. Take breaks. Have fun with it. I always enjoy mixing fun with activism – that’s part of what’s enabled me to stick with it over the years. Celebrate successes. Even small ones!
  6. Keep pulling on the thread 🙂 Follow DC’s lead


Leafblower-free property




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