So I sent a brief email of concern to GoDaddy support over the domain censorship issue, and received a response from the rather important sounding “Office of the President”, although the tone of the email isn’t terribly Presidential:
Thank you for contacting us. Your correspondence has been directed to the Office of the President.
The situation with the Web site RateMyCop was absolutely NOT about censorship in ANY way.
The site’s operator has publicly disclosed the concerns were over bandwidth. More accurately, Go Daddy’s concerns were about how the RateMyCop site was far exceeding the amount of server usage for which it had contracted.
This customer paid for a shared server plan. The connections to his site were six times more than an entire ‘shared server’ accommodates. While he was paying for a service that cost $14.99 a month, his site actually required a much more extensive set-up.
Basically, he was paying for compact car, when he really needed a semi-truck.
The customer was not willing to work with our staff to resolve the issue.
While the “censorship” allegations certainly make for an edgy “story,” they simply had nothing to do with this situation.
Well, their story is definitely plausible, in which case it is a bit unfortunate that everyone jumped on the “censorship” story line (for all the normal reasons its bad to “Cry Wolf”). I sent the following response:
Dear Sir or Madam,
Thank you for your prompt response to my concerns.
I’m happy to accept your explanation on the issue of ratemycop.com,
however there are other anecdotal accounts of GoDaddy shutting down
user’s domains for dubious reasons, most notably relayed on the
Frankly, I would like nothing more than to stick with GoDaddy, since
I’ve personally been happy with your pricing and your service
(although I do wish your user interface was less cluttered), but even
a small risk of a domain being shut down at short or no notice is
unacceptable, as it could have a dramatic impact on my business. I’m
sure the same is true of all of your customers.
Perhaps you could consider creating some kind of customer bill of
rights which could offer some assurances that GoDaddy will only shut
down a domain when legally compelled to do so?
I hope there is a substantive way you can respond to these issues,
such as my bill of rights suggestion, rather than just treating it as
a PR problem.
We’ll see if they respond. On the up side, at least they’ve now learned that if they do ever do anything like this, there will be hell to pay.