The host with the most (fill in blank here)

Excuse me while I go into convulsions without my daily fix of Tiff, as our webhost has unceremoniously asked her to leave after some moron complained about how she (was ultimately forced to) protect her intellectual property. Tom gives the details here, so I won’t rehash it.

But what I will say is that I’m displeased at the handling of the situation and that I have had four enjoyable years with that company, but if that’s the way they’re going to react to someone who’s not been a loyal, paying customer, well, see ya. Holding data hostage (even temporarily)? I thought they were above that. Really.

Insofar as the hotlinking issue, the Internet is not a creative place, sadly. Everyone’s always ripping off each others’ ideas and thoughts and now intellectual property. So, when said owner has tap-danced and asked nicely (repeatedly) to little avail, she had to take drastic measures (I say “drastic” tongue-in-cheek). So the image the hotlinkers saw wasn’t puppies and rainbows. That was the POINT, to scare off the thieves.

What Tom points out about bandwidth costs is an issue I struggle with because I like to provide large files on occasion. I don’t ask you to right-click-save-as for my health; it’s just my subtle way of saying that I’m willing to pay the bandwidth costs to host the larger files, but not willing to pay extra so you can stream them as well.

The point of weblogs, to me, is so that we can get a sort of kalidescope glimpse into other people’s lives. Sure, we will never get to see 100% of their personalities, but it’s through image files and audio and video and good old-fashioned storytelling that the otherwise-unknowns among us have not only a creative outlet, but also a way of putting our mark on the world — of not getting lost among the crowd — of being as special as our moms always told us we were. 😉

If someone tries to rob you in “real life” and you fight back, it’s self-defense. Likewise, if you go to lengths to protect your webspace and the contents of it, bravo. And if your hosting company is going to cave all pussy-like to some dumb bitch who was trying to STEAL an image in the first place, well, let me just say this. For all the business Tiff has given them and referred to them, well, we’re all happy to skip out the door behind her.


I turned off the comments but I brought them back. This entry is likely long forgotten, and that’s wonderful, but I think the discussion is worth reading/continuing.

19 Responses to The host with the most (fill in blank here)

  1. Silver Blue :

    That’s one of the myriad reasons I use DreamHost. Sure, they’re not perfect. I’ve had a couple spouts of downtime for an hour or so.

    But on the upshot, for $9.95 a month (that’s month to month payments — you can get a discount for prepaying) you get 20 gig fo storage space (which increases by 160 meg for every week you remain with them) and 1TB (yes, TERRABYTE) in bandwith (which increases by 8 GIG a week for every week you remain with them), so hotlinking hasn’t been that much of an issue for me any more.

    Looking at’s rates, even is a better deal. That, and they don’t hold your data hostage.

  2. Tom Bridge :

    We’re actually moving to dreamhost, starting today. It’s going to take a bit of tweaking to get things moved, but we’re starting now…

  3. Tiff :

    To be fair and accurate, in response to my request, has made my data available to me again for download and transfer and it’s all now securely on my hard drive, including the 4 MB SQL backup of my blog.

    They will also be removing my name from their pricing page as an endorser in their next round of website updates (you’d better believe I’ll be checking).

    I’ve been using since 2001 for my hosting, and had been employed at a corporate customer of’s for several months before that. It’s their business to run as they see fit, and as a raging capitalist I celebrate their right to do so with the same enthusiasm with which I celebrate my own right to take my business to a company that values my longstanding customer relationship more than the opinion of some crackpot soccer mom with a chip on her shoulder.

    (Also, when I signed up in 2001, their prices were actually one of the better deals around. As SilverBlue rightly points out, this is no longer the case.)

  4. Barb :

    That’s crazy. I can’t believe the host would freeze the account because someone complained they could no longer steal images. That doesn’t even make any sense.

  5. jakej720 :

    I would like to let you know about a really good webhost: amacgeniusmedia (formerly known as creativelive). I am a customer of theirs, and I have been very pleased with their web hosting, and they have some of the best rates in the business. You should definitely check them out. 🙂

  6. Neil Morse :

    I’ve been with Dreamhost for some months and have had no complaints. Kennahora pooh pooh pooh.

  7. neville :

    Hmm, I don’t know.

    It seems like what the webhost had a problem with wasn’t that she was “protecting her intellectual property,” but rather how she was doing it.

    Maybe the “shock image” she replaced her image with was inappropriate for the webhost.

  8. Quinn :

    As you know there are 2 sides to every story. Because of this I believe that you need to here what they are not saying:

    First Issue: The picture in question was Hard Core Porn picture containing 3 men doing very inappropriate things.

    Second issue: This picture was being served up when people linked from Google after finding Tiffany’s site from the search engine.

    Third issue: net has a stated written policy about hosting rated “x” (adult) content. We won’t tolerate it. Many of my customers use .htacces rules to protect how their content is viewed. Many will just give them a blank page or force a 404 error. Here was no reason to force feed anyone linking from Google to consume hard core porn.

    Tom, you say we “folded” My view on the subject is that we stood tight by the written guidelines of the hosting contract that both You and Tiffany agreed to when choosing ~4 years ago.

    I value every one of my clients. I know may of them on a first name basis. There are though some things I won’t stand for. And that is Hard Core Porn on our servers. There is enough filth out there that people can find without force feeding it to an unsuspecting internet surfer. Tiffany’s right to freedom stops when she forces this on unsuspecting viewers.

    People talk about theft of intellectual property. If you don’t want it shared, put a .htaccess password on it. No password = Open to view to anyone. This is no different than walking down the street and window shopping at various stores. Is that window shopper spending any money? No. Do they consume resources, Yes. If you are unwilling to share the content with the world, then don’t put it on the world platform (the internet) in plane view to anyone that comes to the site or links to the site.

    We were in our legal and ethical right to turn off Tiffany’s site. We also did not have to legally give any of her server side content. I did so because she had been a customer for ~4 years. I also did everything she ask in a timely manor to help her move to a different host.

    In this world too many people are not willing to stand by the rules and their standards. Too often the line between black and white gets blurred into grey. Our society suffers because of it. The rules in the constitution are very clear. There is freedom of speech, But even the supreme court has said that free speech stops when it takes the freedom to choose from another.

    I hope that you choose to leave my post intact and not hack it up for your own purpose.


    Quinn Whipple

  9. Nateguts :

    I think that you need to realize that “the hosting company” (I dont want any real or fake attorney letters) sounds like it is within its rights. I was able to find their TOS fairly easily, I dont know why you had trouble (also, most hosting companies make you accept the TOS before they open your account). I think that you are being a whiny sniveling bitch about it and should move on. Webhosts have their own differing values and rules. You broke the rules and the result is that you had to find a new host. Big Fucking Deal. Hopefully the new host will allow you to put up pictures of whatever you want i.e. goatse., bukkake, or even the one of you blowing three old dudes.

  10. Goddess Dawn :

    The only point to my post, if I made one at all, was that I would anticipate that after SoccerTwat raised a rant, our beloved company would give us the benefit of the doubt to remove the image at your request before shutting down the blog. That’s all.

    Nobody said you weren’t within your rights to have the rules you have — we respect and appreciate that. has gone to great lengths to protect us from spammers and from downtime and other assorted inconveniences that other webhosts do not. And we love you for all the great points and that’s why we continue(d) to pay for that service. But what if I start swearing too much (more than usual)? Does that constitute being too offensive for color TV? Will my site be yanked because somebody’s offended by something I say or do and you won’t give me a chance to decide whether to pull down the “offensive” material or to amicably terminate our relationship?

    I’d take it a bit more seriously if I didn’t see the same letter cut and pasted in Tom’s comment box.

  11. Goddess Dawn :

    Comments 8 and 9 have the same IP address/server. Coincidence?

    COMMENT #9:

    Author : Nateguts (IP: ,

    E-mail :

    URI :

    Whois :

    COMMENT #8:

    Author : Quinn (IP: ,

    E-mail :

    URI :

    Whois :

  12. Caterwauling » Archivio Blog » Thoughtdump :

    […] e Metro to MCI center and still actually *see* the concert. But alas, lest I get called a whiny, sniveling bitch again on my own website, I’ll do the rest of my whining behind the & […]

  13. Lachlan :

    Quinn, cut the crap.

    You use the “four year customer” line as though that makes this all seem justified. But use your head- a weblog is designed by nature to be open- no one wants to have to complete shut off the valve of access, otherwise, what is the point?

    So you don’t tolerate porn- fine. But if you value your “four year customers” who (to my knowlege, feel free to correct me because I know you will) are otherwise not problem children, why not:

    -Warn Tiff, maybe give her a temp suspension to learn her?
    -Do the same to the dumbass who hotlinked her AND STOLE HER BANDWIDTH?

    Nuance, it’s all in the nuance. Unless of course it’s just more expedient to paint everything with a broad brush and screw fairness?

  14. Brad Transtrum :


    This is the same post that I left on Tiffany’s site, but it needs to be posted here as well.

    Please consider this letter a formal apology for any racial and/or sexual slurs and comments originating from my typekey account (user name nateguts) left on Tom’s blog-although I believe that the comments in question came from the email domain account. I believe that loyalty comes first and I think that I can safely say that you believe in the same. I felt that Quinn and his actions and the actions of his company also needed to be voiced on your blog along with your loyal readers and friends comments on a subject which was not entirely accurately told to them. I consider Quinn a close personal friend and know him to be very honest person with high integrity and saw that a few of your readers attacked him and his company on a very personal level. This is no excuse to deface your blog with my own personal feelings and views on the matter at hand.
    Good luck with your new host, and hope all runs smoothly with the transfer.
    Brad Transtrum

  15. Lynn :

    No you do not know me… I am not your mother but I would be proud to be! I want to thank you for the info educating me not to use such an unreasonable and underhanded company as has shown itself to be on this issue to me. (thanks also for the referal to your reasonable/affordable new host!) i am appauled at natguts/brad transtrum and especially his empty appology and find his post here to be much more offensive as well as immature, irresponsible, and a mockery, than three XXX guys a thief brought on herself with her own irresponsible actions!

    looks to me like not only lost this battle… they dug thier own big flapping grave and dove in head first covering themself with thier own distasteful seventh grade mentality(error filled) attempt to talk thier way out – only making the entire situatioin and themself look worse than it should have been! from the get go, said socker mom shoulda been the one held responsible for attempting to steal something which did not belong to her! ignorance of the law is no excuse!

    self rightous judgemental do gooders have no business online or allowing thier children to be for sure! i am not at all internet sauvy and once had no idea hotlinking was an offense, but now understand how it effects those who’s images are being stolen, since my free website has such low bandwidth – it is offline most the time. i object to children seeing porn, but that is a fact of life on the internet so if a child is allowed online they will sometime or another see porn unless parents first check each page.

  16. sonderweg :

    “3 men doing very inappropriate things”

    what exactly does that constitute?

    eating dog crap like divine in pink flamingos???

  17. Goddess Dawn :

    Lynn (and everyone), your post illustrates EXACTLY what we’re trying to say here, that if you don’t like the way a site is run, then close the window. And you bring up a good point about kids and that wild and wacky concept of monitoring them.

    That leads us to the latest installment in this drama:

  18. Caterwauling » Archivio Blog » In which Tiff is supposedly now a purveyor of porn to unsuspecting children :

    […] r of porn to unsuspecting children For those of you who’ve been following this saga, here’s the latest installment: This […]

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