Godaddy, you jerk


#1

I registered yet another domain today (terrible habit to have) and I noticed something odd when i was at the godaddy cart review page.

They do a nice little tricky number on you by presenting their domain registration plans in a manner that suggests that you can ONLY hide your personal contact info if you choose a business registration. Which is 4 dollars extra. On top of that, when you DO choose it, it shows up as 4 dollars for the business plan, PLUS another 4 dollars for “private registration services”.

Well foo, I thought that’s what the business plan was for. Alright, well I’ll remove the business plan then if I don’t need it for private registration.

Really though, “private registration services” for 40% of the domain cost? That really should be free. Oh well.

To make matters worse, I only just noticed that I don’t need the business plan for private registration. I’ve registered a few domains through them with business plan private registration. In other words, 8 dollars on top of the $9.95 yearly registration fee. Oh and by the way, you have to be extra sure that you’re only paying for a year. Their default selection on the dropdown is for 2 years of registration. Shady? Nah… everybody knows we naturally measure time in increments of two years.

Anyway… I say to myself “hey… i remember dreamhost giving me a free domain when I signed up way back when. That means they’ve gotta be a legit registrar. I wonder if they trick their customers into paying 80% more than necessary.”

So I head on over to dreamhost.com, and staring me right in the face is the “Domains” tab. I enter some random domain to test out their registration process. Unfortunately, the privacy policy page that is linked to mentions nothing of proxy contact info.

Worried, yet not without hope, I travel to the trusty wiki.dreamhost.com and type in “private domain registration”. 3rd result on the list is “Domain WHOIS Privacy Service (1,513 bytes)”. Ah yes, 1,513 bytes of a potential better way.

I scan the page for some info and see that DreamHost addresses the issue of privacy by saying that

Oh come on DH, don’t jerk me around…

But wait! They understand after all!

I continue to read about how DH kindly offers their “proxy” contact info for anybody who registers domains through them. For free! No seemingly required business registration plan! Not even a four dollar “private registration fee”!

And that brings me current. GoDaddy, today I realized that you are no gentleman. Come renewal time, I’m moving to DH.

And honestly, I should have realized this way earlier. I’ve been hosted here since Nov 05. GoDaddy isn’t any cheaper, there’s no reason I should have had my domain and hosting services separate for so long.

The moral of the story: If you register your domains through somebody else and are mainly hosted here: ask yourself why. If the answer is “they’re cheaper” then good for you. If your answer is “cause I’ve been using registrar x forever”, you might want to reconsider the validity of that reason.

Oh, and DreamHost: it would do you guys well to include a blurb about the free whois privacy service on your privacy policy page. Or better yet, mention it directly on the domain registration page. Had I been a potential customer with no knowledge of the wiki, I could have easily assumed it’s a service you don’t provide.

Ok, I’m done now. That was a nice vent.


#2

But what about their $1.99 .info domains?

Seriously, I have thought about registering a .info domain through them, but I have to admit being worried that there was some trick and that I’d end up paying more.

Your tale does not fill me with confidence regarding GoDaddy’s ethics. On the other hand, those GoDaddy girls are really hot.

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#3

although many many people told me that GoDaddy is good, I still do not mind where I register my domain. There is no difference to me.

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#4

NameCheap is a pretty good registrar that offers privacy for free…


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#5

It used to not matter for me either. It was only until recently that I decided that I don’t want my private info available to anybody who looks up my domain(s). In this regard, GoDaddy is a terrible choice. They charge for something that others do for free, and if that’s not bad enough they’re sneaky about how they address the issue, squeezing in yet another 4 dollars.

http://foohonpie.net/images/godaddy.png

I want to say maybe it’s my fault for just reading it wrong. But looking at that table in that picture (specifically, the bottom row), what else is a customer supposed to assume? They obviously make it seem as though you have to pay for the deluxe plan to get private whois info. And that’s not the case.

I’m normally not one to whine and moan, and I’d hate to come across as such. But I clearly see the intent now, and I doubt such a presentation is by accident. You want to charge for private registration? Alright, I can accept that. But really, making it so it seems that you have to buy the deluxe plan as well to keep your information private… that’s too shady for my tastes.

The company-customer relationship is a very delicate thing. Maybe I’m being over dramatic, but this whole thing leaves a bad taste in my mouth.


#6

I believe they start billing you $2.88/year after the first year, though.


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#7

Right now, the first year is only $.99–but it goes up after that. There are places with cheap .info prices, though… not just for the first year.

In most cases, the thing to watch out for with cheap domain prices (any extension–not just .info) is whether the pricing is only good for the first year or not.

The downside to .info domains would be that spammers burn through them. The average person could set a spam filter to block all @.info senders, as well as any message that contains a .info URL… and never lose a piece of good mail. I’ve done that before with .biz and never trashed anything worth reading.

There are good sites/people that use the extensions, but they seem to be greatly outnumbered by spammers.


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#8

Similar to $22.40 for first year of hosting…

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#9

Personally I dislike “proxy contact info”. Every time I actually have a need to contact a domain’s owner due to them doing something fishy, their server spewing out spam or their domain being used as a spamvertized site, I find proxy contact info there. Yay, another layer of indirection. Great stuff. As if the P.O.-Box companies in Denmark were not enough.

It’s easy enough to set up a mailbox for domain registrations that is really really picky about what gets through. Nobody is asking you to give up your spamfree personal mailbox (as if such a beast existed) to the whois information service.

Not to say that YOU are going to do something fishy, it’s just been my experience that those who do will crave “private” registrations. If you want to remain “private”, use a subdomain of dreamhost.com :wink:

My $0.02, YMMV :slight_smile:


#10

One would certainly think that there are similarities, but I think the distinction between the way DreamHost advertises and markets and the way GoDaddy does is an important distinction.

DreamHost says: Hosting as low as $7.95 a month.
DreamHost referrers say: Get your first year for only $22.40.
GoDaddy says: Register a .info domain for $1.99 a year.

What they don’t tell you:

  1. GoDaddy chooses not to tell you that the offer is only for the first year. (and I can’t figure out when you find out it’s only for the first year)
  2. DreamHost chooses not to tell you that you need to prepay for 2 years to get the $7.95 a month price. (but they tell you on the link)

To me, this difference is a big one. You have to decide for yourself whether it’s important to you.

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#11

ok. i have a domain in Godaddy and it is going to expire. They won’t auto-rebill me right. I just want to let it go.

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#12

That depends on your settings. You’ll need to log in and see if you have it set to auto-renew.


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#13

your info domain would be $1.21 after the fees racket and then your whois information would be harvested unless you get yourself into the EXTORTION that is domains by proxy. Godaddy will sometimes call the whois contact number for a domain… if the number is not valid they can seize your domain. fun huh?

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#14

Believe it or not, domains aren’t “supposed” to be privately registered: They’re supposed to have contact information available to all. Maybe this is an outdated relic of an era with no spammers or identity thieves, but it’s the way it’s “supposed to be”. If you don’t like that, then you can pay your registrar for a proxy service. DreamHost happens to offer this service for free, while Go Daddy does not. That’s business—as far as I’m aware, a registrar can and must close down any domain that lists fraudulent information for its contacts (at least that’s what that silly ICANN registrar accreditation agreement says)—why shouldn’t a company then check to ensure the legitimacy of the information submitted to it? DreamHost, after all, has some very stringent anti-fraud systems in place for new accounts (as the number of complaints about false positives indicate). Fraud in a domain name registration seems no different than fraud in other data you submit to your registrar.

Having a profitable business model doesn’t make a company evil. If you don’t want the undercoating the car salesman tries to push on you, then don’t buy it, but don’t complain when you regret not purchasing the add-ons.

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#15

I logged in GoDaddy, but could not find the settings. Ha…

Now I do not know whether they will re-bill me. Good luck to me!

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#16

Just log into your account, then go to the “Manage Domains” section. Click on the domain name and it will bring up the info page. In the first column, you should see "Auto Renews: " with either on or off after it, plus a link next to it to change your settings.


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#17

Thanks for the reply :wink:

It says Expires 7/26/2008 Renew Now. Does it mean that I’ve already disabled auto-renew?

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#18

You clicked on the domain name once you were in the “Manage Domains” section, right?

If not, you’ll just see when it expires and the renew link, but if you click on the domain name, it will bring up more info.

On that page, the "Auto Renews: " line is right under the "Expires On: " line. If it says off, then it should just expire.


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#19

thanks for the infor. I just turned off Auto-renew. I knew they will turn it on by default.

sorry DH. I borrowed some space from your forum :wink:

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#20

In GoDaddys “My Account” there is a section called “My renewing items”.

If DreamHost would offer registering of international domainnames, I wouldn’t need GoDaddy!


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