Why I’m Leaving GoDaddy (It’s Not SOPA)

A lot of people have been ditching GoDaddy due to their support of SOPA (the Stop Online Piracy Act). Well, I have my own reasons for leaving them that has nothing to do with SOPA, but raises a good question about customer service and loyalty.

I‘ve used GoDaddy for years. Even though their interface is confusing and horrible, I’ve liked their speediness of DNS updates and relatively inexpensive prices. But considering the kind of causes I champion (i.e. fighting the often over-sexualized and dehumanizing portrayal of women in the media) I’ve been torn about having so much invested in a company like GoDaddy that flaunts their provocative and woman-objectifying ads. I frankly haven’t left yet because I have so many domains already with them.

But late last year I was upset at a situation where I feel I got unfairly charged for something that their convoluted website made hard to know I was paying for. Technically, they were in the right. But given their crazy and poorly designed site, and the fact that last year alone I spent $900 with them, I thought that for the sake of customer service of a long-standing, good-paying client, they would refund my money. It was only $46, but to me it was a principle thing. If they are like that for a small amount, how would they be for a large amount. I don’t want to find out.¬†That combined with everything else was the straw that broke the camel’s back.

How would you handle a situation like this if you were on the GoDaddy side? Is there ever a time to break your own rules for the sake of a client? Or, as the GoDaddy rep told me, it’s not good to set a precedent (i.e. if he did it for me, he’d have to do it for everyone). What’s your take?

So many good topics for discussion around this one.

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19 Responses to “Why I’m Leaving GoDaddy (It’s Not SOPA)”

  1. His answer tells it all. If their business model depends on confusing people into paying fees that they didn’t intend to pay, is that really a company you want to do business with?

  2. I’ll start out by saying I enjoy this blog and read many of the posts.

    I find this post interesting and you may not like this reply at all. First, I was hunting for a new place for my website earlier last year. Go Daddy was a consideration because the prices/features seemed good. I had never seen an advert for them (probably because I’m not in the USA) Then before I made the move, the Elephant killing video (with CEO Bob Parsons) hit the net. Because I don’t want to support a person or company with this attitude toward animals (or women for that matter), I immediately scratched them off my list. I also got a few friends I knew that used them to change from Go Daddy as well.

    I get the point of the post today and frankly if I were treated this way, I’d go as well.

    Ron, you post that you champion “fighting the often over-sexualized and dehumanizing portrayal of women in the media” but chose to stay despite their advertising methods. Now you’re leaving over $46.00? You’ll stay to save money even though their advertising offends you but then they charge you $46.00 and your indignant enough to leave them.

    Priorities…..

    • I have to admit that I have no defense for your very valid point. I am fallible. I didn’t agree with their advertising, yet it didn’t bother me enough to start moving my domains. It was only after I didn’t like the customer service that I decided to leave. To me it was more of the straw that broke the camel’s back. But, as you say, perhaps the bigger issue was my own misplaced priorities. You are correct. FWIW, your comment and this experience has made me strongly consider the issues of making hard decisions based on personal ethics. I’ll most likely follow up with a commentary.

      Thanks for being brave enough to call me out. I appreciate my readers holding me accountable.

  3. Back at you for allowing my post to be put in public. It takes a lot to have an opposing POV and instead of being defensive, seeing how to effect better choices in the future.

    I think this post and your reply has a more broad value than you might have thought of when originally writing the post. If we all (me included of course) did a better job of sticking to our values, we might not be facing so many big issues today individually and as a society.

    It can be the small things like using Go Daddy or bigger issues like doing things to protect the environment and so on.

  4. Ron, I want to dump them too, please keep us informed on how the switching process goes for you…many peeps would be curious about the process. Peter called you out before I could…I must be getting slow. ;)

    • You’re slackin’ Steve. :)

      In response to your inquiry about the switching process, I’ve heard horror stories. One thing to keep in mind that if you make any king of change to your records, the domain is locked for 30 days (or something like that). One thing that’s good is that most other domain registrars will have step by step instructions on how to switch from GoDaddy (and most other major domain service providers). Lastly, I’m moving domains as they come up for renewal. Not in the budget to move them all at once. You have to pay another year’s worth of reg fees when you xfer. Luckily most other providers of have discounted xfer reg fee. I’ll update this blog post as I go through the process.

  5. Thanks for you honesty, Ron. While I share your views of GoDaddy, I have yet to move my own domain. I guess it’s time for me to take a look at my priorities as well.

    My most recent experience with domain registrars has been with hover.com. They are much more user friendly than GoDaddy and don’t have the objectionable advertising. And they’re decently priced as well.

  6. Can you recommend a company to go with and the process of switching. I have wanted to switch for a while but was intimidated by the process (well my lack of knowledge on the process). Suggestions and advice would be greatly appreciated! Try to set up an affiliate account so you can make some cash off of it :) But send help!

    • Hey Rob, as I mentioned to Steve, most major register services will have step by step guidelines for switching from GoDaddy. The two services I’m currently looking at are Hover.com and domain.com. Someone from domain.comactually contacted me via twitter than I arranged a phone call with them. Great customer service (so far).

  7. For serious biz applications where service matters, I’ll stick with ServInt. Over the years I’ve been down too many bumpy roads with other ISPs to realize you really do get what you pay for…

  8. I have used dreamhost.com for many years, seems solid. And they don’t shoot elephants, do degrading ads or think supporting SOPA is a great idea. I frankly don’t understand why anybody would use godaddy, but there you go…

  9. Ron, move your domains to Host Gator and don’t look back. Their standard Cpanel interface and WHM tools make it quite painless to move and manage multiple domains. I think you’ll look long and hard to find a better value for your money. Check them out

  10. I’ve always stood by treating customers equally but when a misunderstanding happens and you bear part of the blame (or in this case it sounds like they bore the brunt of the blame for your confusion) then absolutely they should have been willing to bend their rules. Even if it meant offering half back to you if it wasn’t entirely their fault, the gesture could have gone a long way in showing they care about you as a client at all. Even better would be for them to credit you back and fix the confusing issue so it doesn’t happen to anyone else in the future. Short of that it says a lot about where their priorities lie when it comes to customer service vs. profits.

  11. I’ve noticed many businesses today appear to either have your purchase history on the cs screen, or run an algorithm that tells the cs person what leeway they have to keep customers happy in a dispute. If GoDaddy isn’t doing that and would risk a long term relationship over $46, they are either callous and greedy, or getting behind technologically. Either way, there are better choices out there. BTW, sounds like the transfer process is deliberately painful to disuade you from switching.

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  1. When Your Patronage and Passions Clash | Dare Dreamer Magazine - January 16, 2012

    [...] past weekend I wrote about how I’m leaving GoDaddy over $46 and a bad customer experience. Yet, I didn’t leave them when I knew their [...]

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