Dreamhost domain registration vs. GoDaddy


#1

Given this recent item about GoDaddy suspending domains without notice based on a complaint:

What is Dreamhost’s policy on similar issues regarding domains registered with them? Do they enforce any TOS regarding what the domain is used for (or allegedly used for) and suspend or remove domains without prior notice, as GoDaddy does? I’m asking because I have some domains registered through GoDaddy and I’m thinking of switching them in protest of their actions, but want to know if DH is actually a better place to put my domain registrations in that regard.

(Not that I’m doing anything with any of the domains that I think is remotely a violation of either GoDaddy or Dreamhost’s TOS, but I just dislike on principle a registrar acting as judge, jury, and executioner like that.)

– Dan


#2

DH host websites as long as they are legal.

I can’t answer in the name of DH, but if there is a webpage with a big security flaw (with hundreds of username and password) it’ normal to (at least temporary) disable this website.

When you have to act fast, you can’t wait for a court or a juge to ask for it.


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#3

I disagree. While I can understand why a host might take down a site that contains objectionable or illegal content, I don’t really think a registrar should be disabling domains because of content, unless ordered by the relevant authorities to do so. In my opinion, GoDaddy has set a dangerous precedent here.

As for DreamHost, I think the best option would be to contact DreamHost themselves and ask for their position on issues such as this.

Mark


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#4

My feelings exactly! The host has certain responsibilities, in the U.S., under DMCA, and I expect they will be presented with takedown notices from time to time. A registrar taking it upon themselves to “take down” a site (even for the “safety of the internet” to paraphrase the abuse guy at GoD*ddy) is just not right - there is no “process” or oversight except what they feel is appropriate, and I don’t think they should have that power.

–rlparker


#5

I believe there must be come rules about this.

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#6

I agree with Raz2133 and rlparker, I don’t believe it is the registrars place to be disabling domains, any issues should be directed to the company hosting that domain, since that is where the objectionable/illegal content if any is located. This is not a good precedent GoDaddy have set imo.


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#7

I just hope that all the negative publicity over this particular case will result in some concrete guidelines on exactly what a registrar can and can’t do, if such guidelines do not already exist.

I think that many of the people siding with GoDaddy in this case have ‘missed the point’ entirely. Allowing registrars to arbitrarily take down domains for content reasons is a slippery slope. I don’t think anyone would seriously argue that the content in this particular case should have remained accessible, but it was not the registrars responsibility to remove it.

I mean, where do we draw the line? Will we see future cases where domains will be taken down because they contain content offensive to a particular government / company?

Mark


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#8

But are there any examples of DH stepping in as a registrar and changing nameservers? They’ll suspend hosting accounts, just like every other host out there… but GoDaddy basically hijacked the domain name, as a registrar.

Having said that, I’ve used Godaddy for years (still have domains there) and never had any problems.


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#9

The discussion/situation you linked is not similar at all. In the linked situation, the host suspended operation of a site they felt had been compromised. In the situation the OP was posting about, a registrar disabled a domain name.

While the “results” may appear to be the same, there is a world of difference in the decision making process, and the various constituents’ responsibilities and potential exposure. :wink:

–rlparker


#10

[quote]The discussion/situation you linked is not similar at all. In the linked situation, the host suspended operation of a site they felt had been compromised. In the situation the OP was posting about, a registrar disabled a domain name.

While the “results” may appear to be the same, there is a world of difference in the decision making process, and the various constituents’ responsibilities and potential exposure.

–rlparker[/quote]
Indeed, the way GoDaddy handles such matters impacted me personally, which is why I went to DreamHost.

Here’s a link to an article I posted on the subject, which explains it all:

http://macnightowl.com/newsletter/2007/01/28/newsletter-issue-374/#godaddy

By the way, after just about a month, I can say that DreamHost smokes GoDaddy when it comes to performance, even though our bills are a mite higher now.

Peace,
Gene Steinberg
Co-Host, The Paracast
http://www.theparacast.com


#11

Perhaps it has something to do with this dreamhoststatus.com post. Although, Jeff did state in the comments that critical sites were legally protected.

Mark


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#12

That could very well have something to do with it. A quick “google” will make it pretty obvious that the “tide has turned” a bit on the whole “sucks sites” situation.

For years it was pretty much a crapshoot - the court rulings were pretty inconsistent, with the “suck site” operator prevailing at times and the trademark holder prevailing at other times. That seems to be changing, as most recent rulings have landed squarely on the side of the trademark holder.

The content of critical sites may well be protected legally, but the “law” seems to be evolving more toward supporting the trademark holder when it comes to the use of a trademark in a domain name, “parody” and “criticism” considerations notwithstanding.

Of course, given that quality, and content, of that particular site (old content, not updated, few contributors, puppet-population, etc.) “natural selection” might have just kicked in resulting in its demise. No real loss. :wink: .

–rlparker


#13

[quote]Gene,

Any remotely credible complaint of spamming will get Dreamhost to take you down too, or at least make you scramble and beg for a 2nd chance.

BTW, anybody know where dreamhost-sucks.com went? Coincidence? Extraterrestrial action?[/quote]
The key in your response is “credible complaint of spamming,” which is not one lone complaint about an announcement for a free program that contains family-friendly content.

I agree that, with compelling evidence of spamming, the registrar and/or host may indeed be put in a position where they have to make some important decisions. In this case, however, the client needs to be given proper notice to explain his or her actions and provide the requested indemnification.

But I think you see the distinction here between the former and the latter. I’ll vote for the latter every time.

Peace,
Gene Steinberg
Co-Host, The Paracast
http://www.theparacast.com


#14

I suppose it could, if you launched a “google bomb” for your search. Using any reasonable series of appropriate and relevant search terms makes the whole handling of your search by any change in “google-bomb” handling completely irrelevant.

Or, you could use another search facility, or just research the last couple of years WIPO trends reports, or use any other method of research that suits you.

Whatever method of research you use, the fact is that the trend on the handling of “suck sites” disputes is changing, partly because of a WIPO report on trends in domain name dispute decisions, published in March 2005.

"On ‘sucks’ sites, it agreed that non-fluent English speakers would fail to recognize the negative connotations of the word. " - Source

–rlparker


#15

Maybe Dreamhost doesn’t suck anymore? :smiley:


#16

No.


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#17

It’s a matter of how the registrar and/or host provider handles it, however. They could simply email the sender and ask what happened. In most cases, it can probably be easily explained as a mistake on the part of the recipient, or unintentional.

If the company goes overboard in investigating the matter, however, threatening to demand a “tribute” payment to keep from suspending a domain, or hold it hostage from transfer without paying an exorbitant fee, that’s another issue.

The first is proper due diligence. The second is excessive, and unjustified.

Peace,
Gene Steinberg
Co-Host, The Paracast
http://www.theparacast.com


#18

…and then, shortly, a GoDaddySucks version, no doubt. This guy obviously has patently “bad luck” with hosts. :wink:

–rlparker


#19

Perhaps there is a generic ‘hosting-sucks’ site in the making. :wink:

Mark


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