by Mike Masnick
Fri, Sep 28th 2012 5:20am
by Mike Masnick
Tue, Sep 11th 2012 4:38pm
from the i'd-say-worse... dept
The service outage was not caused by external influences. It was not a "hack" and it was not a denial of service attack (DDoS). We have determined the service outage was due to a series of internal network events that corrupted router data tables. Once the issues were identified, we took corrective actions to restore services for our customers and GoDaddy.com. We have implemented measures to prevent this from occurring again.While my first reaction to all of this was to wonder who would still use GoDaddy, my second question is to wonder whether GoDaddy looks better or worse if it was its own fault that the service went down so broadly. Mistakes happen, but a company like GoDaddy survives on its ability not to make mistakes at that level. I guess, in the end, it's just yet another reminder of why people might want to look for alternatives.
At no time was any customer data at risk or were any of our systems compromised.
by Mike Masnick
Thu, Feb 16th 2012 7:40am
from the not-cool dept
Many people on the comments assumed the content was posted by us. This can happen to any site that allows public to post content. SOPA may not have passed, but what happened shows that it is already being practiced. All they have to do is to ask GoDaddy to take a site down. We have 2 millions user generated forms. It is not possible for us to manually review all forms. This can happen to any web site that allows user generated content.I'm at a loss as to how this possibly makes sense. Even if the forms were being used for some illegal purpose (and it's important to note that Section 230 does not apply to criminal activity -- just civil offenses), I still can't fathom a reason why it should lead to everyone else getting censored and an internet startup facing a massive hardship wherein tons of users have had their service disrupted with millions of useful forms being suddenly disappeared.
And I won't even bother spending any time on the fact that apparently it was GoDaddy who helped the US government "suspend" the domain.
For a government that insists it's trying to help small businesses and startups, to go and disrupt one and all of its users over some possible illegal usage by a small number of users is just crazy. It's this kind of overly broad censorship (and, yes, this is clear censorship) that is what people were afraid of under SOPA. As JotForm notes, it's important to recognize that the US government already believes it has these powers. And the damage here for a small business is massive. JotForm has been filling its Twitter feed with customer service attempts at helping upset customers, and making it clear it has no information on why the .com disappeared. It looks like the US government asked, and GoDaddy just took away the domain. If you've never worked for a startup, perhaps you can't imagine just how insanely disruptive and destructive such a situation can be. Everyone is so busy working and building a company -- but something like this means suddenly all of their time has to switch over to help all of those upset customers (and doing so without being able to use the site that everyone will go look at first!).
Activities like this will chill innovation and entrepreneurship in the US. Why locate here or even setup under a .com if the US government might kill your business with no explanation at any moment?
by Mike Masnick
Fri, Dec 30th 2011 1:56am
from the not-sustainable dept
Either way, it appears that for those who were hoping for a big boycott on Thursday, that didn't happen. I'm sure some SOPA supporters will use this as fodder to suggest the whole effort was a failure, but that's ridiculous. The whole thing still got a large company that was a huge supporter of these terrible bills to switch its position and recognize that it can't run roughshod over the wishes of its customers. It also helped draw more attention to the overall issue, and helped in getting other companies to back away from supporting the bill. It also got some attention among elected officials about how supporting this bill could get the internet activated. It may not be enough to kill the bills yet, but more politicians are aware of the issues. All in all, getting GoDaddy to change its position was a huge victory against SOPA and PIPA, but remains just one battle in a long and still ongoing war.
Update: There are a bunch of comments insisting that this can't be true, and I'm happy to see more data. NameCheap claims that it had 32,000 domains transfer in, and it's true that Daily Changes isn't a perfect proxy for domain transfers -- but it's a pretty good one. Some are suggesting that delays in processing will show more transfers over the next few days. We'll be watching. It's possible that there were a lot more transfers, but just because people want it to happen, doesn't mean it actually happened. Update 2: NameCheap says in the last week they've received around 80,000 transfers.
by Mike Masnick
Thu, Dec 29th 2011 9:36am
from the as-the-godaddy-turns dept
Yes, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), better known as the folks behind the Academy Awards (the Oscars), launched a lawsuit against GoDaddy back in May of 2010 over this very issue. And, just last week, as GoDaddy was coming to terms with the complaints from the public, AMPAS was in court trying to force GoDaddy founder and ex-CEO Bob Parsons to give a deposition about the company's practices.
The article linked above, by Eriq Gardner at THResq, notes that many people believe that the completely mixed messages come from Parsons'... unique style of managing the company:
... in advance of a February cut-off date for discovery, AMPAS wishes to depose Parsons, whose “fingerprints are all over GoDaddy’s domain name monetization programs,” according to the brief.Now, as I stated when AMPAS filed the lawsuit, this case seems pretty ridiculous, and it seems pointless to blame GoDaddy for the actions of its users registering these domains -- even if (as the lawsuit contends), GoDaddy makes money from people parking these domains. We called it "absurd" at the time... and we stand by it.
And in the process, perhaps get some answers about why Parsons has seemingly been two-faced on the piracy front.
One example given is a post that Parsons wrote for his personal blog. In it, Parsons takes issue with the practice known as “kiting,” where registrars take advantage of a 5-day grace period to put up mini-Web sites loaded with search engine bait. Later, on his blog, Parsons discussed a trademark lawsuit against Dotster – “a registrar who hasn’t exactly been a stranger to domain kiting,” he said – for registering many misspellings of trademarked names, and associating them with search engine pages.
“This is exactly AMPAS’s complaint in this case,” says the plaintiff. “That its marks are famous and well-known; that GoDaddy monetizes domain names incorporating AMPAS’s trademarks – having received 60 cease/desist letters from AMPAS – yet continues to park domain names incorporating AMPAS’s marks.”
But it's even more absurd in the context of SOPA/PIPA. You would think that, being subject to such absurd lawsuits over enabling infringement (oh, and don't forget the other similar lawsuit against GoDaddy from the Michael Jackson estate...), the company would be extra sensitive to laws that would put it at greater risk. It really calls into question what people are thinking over there, even if they have "backed down" from their support of the bills.
by Mike Masnick
Thu, Dec 29th 2011 7:20am
from the timing-is-everything dept
However, GoDaddy seems to be focusing on what's worked for it in the past: advertising with scantily clad women (and Danica Patrick in particular). Apparently it's been putting full page ads in the NY Times (and other papers?) with Patrick covered strategically by a sign.
And... the strategy may have worked so far.
While tons of domains transferred out at the end of last week, this week has been a bit of a different story. On Monday, it looks like GoDaddy basically broke even, with 18,401 new registrations and 14,853 transfers in... vs only 8,862 transfers out and 24,120 domains deleted. That netted out to an increase for GoDaddy of 272 domains. Tuesday was even more positive for the company. Even though another 16,662 domains were transferred out and another 27,564 were deleted, there was a big bump in new registrations: 31,574 (perhaps driven by new ads?) and another 15,452 transferred in. Net change? 2,800 in the plus column for GoDaddy. Finally, that same trend continued for Wednesday: an impressive 33,251 new registrations and 17,549 transfers in. That goes against 15,524 transfers out and 30,634 deletions. Net: 4,642 more domains under GoDaddy control.
Left unanswered: is this a lull before a bunch of transfers today? Or has the whole boycott issue subsided?
by Mike Masnick
Tue, Dec 27th 2011 2:17pm
from the keep-editing dept
Of course, it's unclear why the Judiciary Committee only puts up a list of (rapidly shrinking) supporters. If it wanted to present the various opinions on the bill, shouldn't it actually show the large and growing list of SOPA opponents?
by Mike Masnick
Tue, Dec 27th 2011 12:15pm
from the turning-into-an-election-issue dept
Perhaps a little crowdsourcing is in order. Can we figure out who's already registered to run against the incumbent supporters of SOPA and PIPA, and reach out to get their opinions on the bills and of censorship of the internet?
Here's the full list of the current co-sponsors for SOPA. If any of their opponents in next year's election are paying attention, they should be using this as a key issue and reaching out to the internet community, ASAP. What happened to GoDaddy can happen to a politician in an instant:
- Mark Amodei [NV2]
- Joe Baca [CA43]
- John Barrow [GA12]
- Karen Bass [CA33]
- Howard Berman [CA28]
- Marsha Blackburn [TN7]
- Mary Bono Mack [CA45]
- John Carter [TX31]
- Steven Chabot [OH1]
- Judy Chu [CA32]
- John Conyers [MI14]
- Jim Cooper [TN5]
- Ted Deutch [FL19]
- Elton Gallegly [CA24]
- Robert Goodlatte [VA6]
- Tim Griffin [AR2]
- Tim Holden [PA17]
- Peter King [NY3]
- John Larson [CT1]
- Ben Lujan [NM3]
- Thomas Marino [PA10]
- Alan Nunnelee [MS1]
- William Owens [NY23]
- Ben Quayle [AZ3]
- Dennis Ross [FL12]
- Steve Scalise [LA1]
- Adam Schiff [CA29]
- Brad Sherman [CA27]
- Lee Terry [NE2]
- Debbie Wasserman Schultz [FL20]
- Melvin Watt [NC12]
- Ben Cardin [Maryland]
- Bob Casey [Pennsylvania]
- Bob Corker [Tennessee]
- Dianne Feinstein [California]
- Kristen Gillibrand [New York]
- Orrin Hatch [Utah]
- Amy Klobuchar [Minnesota]
- Bob Menendez [New Jersey]
- Bill Nelson [Florida]
- Sheldon Whitehouse [Rhode Island]
It seems that anyone running against these folks would be missing out on a huge opportunity not to make the incumbent's support of censoring the internet into a campaign issue.
by Mike Masnick
Tue, Dec 27th 2011 9:09am
from the bye-bye dept
Still, there are plenty of people who don't buy it. It didn't help that the company's new CEO (though he's been at the company in other roles for a while) gave a really weak answer, when pressed on the company's level of support, suggesting that it may have just stepped back from publicly supporting the bills, but hasn't actually switched its full position:
Adelman couldn’t commit to changing its position on the record in Congress when asked about that, but said “I’ll take that back to our legislative guys, but I agree that’s an important step.” But when pressed, he said “We’re going to step back and let others take leadership roles.” He felt that the public statement removing their support would be sufficient for now, though further steps would be considered.Either way, it appears people keep on transferring domains. Before the talk of a boycott happened on Thursday, it looked like GoDaddy was losing about 13,000 to 15,000 domains a day anyway. Then, on Friday, when people started transferring en masse, it jumped to 21,054. On Christmas Day, it looks like another 22,542 transferred out, so it doesn't look like people are all that mollified by the public change in position. Another 26,032 were "deleted," according to DailyChanges. And, remember, the "official" day that people had talked about for everyone to transfer their domains wasn't until Thursday, December 29th, so all of this was happening before the "big day." Who knows if the statements are enough to calm people down. For what it's worth, plenty of people are still registering new domains with GoDaddy and transferring them in, but the transfers out and deletions definitely outweigh the new registrations and transfers in. It was definitely enough activity to make GoDaddy realize it was going to be in trouble if it didn't change its position.
by Mike Masnick
Tue, Dec 27th 2011 8:07am
from the too-little,-too-late dept
I just got a call from #GoDaddy. The rep said he noticed that I'd transferred my 60+ domains away... and wanted to know if I'd tell them why. I got to tell them that it was because of their #SOPA support, and that I couldn't in good conscience give my money to a tech company that would support legislation like that. I told him I was aware that they had reversed their position, but that their explicit support of it in the first place had cost them my confidence in them, as it is at the best viciously ignorant, and at worst, malicious. The rep was quite sincere in his apology to me, asked if there was anything they could do to win me back. He had a "We support IP protections, and now realize that support of SOPA is too broad" song-and-dance routine that probably came in from a PR memo today. I told him "no thanks", and that was that. I'm impressed by the customer service hustle, but it shows that this little incident really spooked them.It really makes me wonder if GoDaddy will ever be able to win back the confidence of many who joined this boycott. Perhaps not.