RIP Don Blumenthal

By Neil Schwartzman
Neil Schwartzman

Don Michael Blumenthal, 67, of Ann Arbor, Michigan, died on September 28, 2019. (Obituary)It is with a heavy heart that we note the passing of a dear friend, colleague and member of the CAUCE board of directors, Don Blumenthal, on September 28, 2019, in Ann Arbor, Michigan. He was 67.

Don was an anti-spammer for as long a there was an anti-spam community: he helped design, deploy and maintain the famous 'Spam Fridge,' the repository of junk email maintained by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). He contributed the wisdom he gleaned from that experience to the design process of Canada's Spam Freezer.

Don Blumenthal later worked at the Public Interest Registry (, maintaining anti-abuse work for the .ORG TLD.

Don was a welcome, active participant to the Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG), at the meetings held by the Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group (M3AAWG), the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and, of course, he was a long-time board member of the Coalition Against Unsolicited Commercial Email (CAUCE).

His interests also lay outside the realm of anti-abuse work; Don was a football scout for the Oakland Raiders.

Don Blumenthal worked tirelessly to make the Internet a better place, had a considerable degree of success doing so, and he will be sorely missed by us all. Simply put, he was a tremendously nice guy.

Rest in peace, Don.

By Neil Schwartzman, Executive Director, The Coalition Against unsolicited Commercial Email - CAUCE. Visit the blog maintained by Neil Schwartzman here.

Related topics: Email, Spam


Don Blumenthal always treated me with kindness, Kurt Pritz  –  Oct 06, 2019 8:37 PM PST

Don Blumenthal always treated me with kindness, dignity, and respect, even though he knew a lot and me, not so much. Don was always generous with his time, taking time to make careful explanations and offering to contribute his knowledge and expertise to various issues. Whenever I came across Don, I would always smile. My best wishes and condolences to those who were close to him.

Don was a real gentleman. When Carlton Samuels  –  Oct 08, 2019 12:59 PM PST

Don was a real gentleman.  When I came into the ICANN world and as Chair of the At-Large WHOIS WG, he was one individual who welcomed me and provided me with insights that greatly assisted my deeper understanding of abuse vectors and how they could be contained.

My heartfelt condolences to his family and friends. Rest in Peace, Don.

Carlton Samuels