Customer Service How(not)to

In late 2003, I came across an ad for a company trying to break into the US markets by offering 3 years of hosting for free. I was tired of home-hosting everything, so started an account, registered a domain name, and evaluated it.

To date, their hosting services have been excellent. I eventually registered a handful of other domains with them and hosted three or four sites there. Finally, once my activities grew beyond it, I made arrangements for a new server with a different company, moved some of my domains to GoDaddy, and left my wife's sites on their servers.

Last year, I did a major cleanup of all our accounts and moved the final three domains to my GoDaddy Control Panel…. and this is when the troubles started.

First, it took them multiple weeks to acknowledge the transfer and they did each of the five domains individually. While it wasn't problematic, it was annoying. Regardless, I now had all of our domains on one control panel and all active through 2007.

Recently, I start seeing charges on my credit card. I initially suspected that my three years of service were over but when I dug into it, I found that I was actually being billed for every domain, despite moving them to GoDaddy.

I contacted their tech support who stated “we do not give refunds”. I pointed out the fact that I was charged for services never provided and wanted a refund. After a long back and forth, I was told that I needed to switch my DNS away from them. Not a problem, but I couldn't do it immediately.

I wake up the next morning to find the remaining sites gone. Poof, nothing, email bouncing or disappearing, and traffic going nowhere. The company simply deleted all of them. I scrambled and had them back online within a few hours, but I was simply amazed at the disregard.

I once again request my refund and was denied. I finally responded with : “At this point, [company] has fraudulently charged my credit card for services I did not request, did not authorize, and did not receive.”

I finally called them and got an actual human who attempted to give me the run around. After being put on hold for nearly 10 minutes – timed by Skype – I was finally told that I would see the refund “sometime soon”.

I had been happy with their services up to this point. Their hosting was excellent and I had zero downtime that I know of. Their control panel was simple and easy to use and they gave you shell access. I have yet to be quite that happy with any other hosting company in terms of technical ability.

Unfortunately, their customer billing and support policies make them completely impossible and untrustworthy to do business with. Once my refunds are processed, I will be shutting down my account completely and removing my account information. I need to be able to trust the people I do business with instead of monitoring their every transaction. How disappointing.