This morning I noticed a Twitter Tweet from Blue Oregon's uber-progressive, Kari Chisholm, which said in part:
GoDaddy CEO is GOP activist. Try Dotster.com, local (Vancouver WA)
For many years I've used GoDaddy for domain name registration and web site hosting. I've been satisfied with the service, but the GoDaddy style has bothered me.
So Kari's suggestion pushed me to transfer four domain names to Dotster today. Before describing how that went, here's what rubs me the wrong way about GoDaddy.
(1) Over commercialization. Take a look at the home pages of GoDaddy and Dotster. Over the top sales promotions versus clean and simple advertising. This guy calls GoDaddy's approach "brainless marketing."
What he means, I think, isn't that the GoDaddy CEO (Bob Parsons) is brainless, but his web site often implies that users of his services are -- given the incessant offers to upgrade, buy more stuff, and such.
That gets irritating when you just want to do something simple, like purchase a domain name. I found that Dotster has a few "would you like to also buy..." enticements on its site, but to nowhere near the same degree as GoDaddy.
(2) Sexist marketing. More accurately, crude sexist marketing. I'm fine with having gorgeous females presented as mindless objects of desire. That's a great way to grab the attention of a male mind.
But Parsons and GoDaddy are notorious for the "enhanced" Super Bowl 30-second ad. (A lengthier and more revealing version is on the GoDaddy web site, along with other videos of the buxom GoDaddy girls.)
I don't find the commercials clever or entertaining. However, they do indicate what sort of company Bob Parsons is running, and something about his view of the world.
(3) The GoDaddy CEO is a right-wing Republican. Nothing wrong with that. Ordinarily I don't choose what to purchase because of the politics of a company president. But when Kari reminded me of Bob Parson's GOP activism, I took a look at some of the many videos on Parsons' v-blog.
Watching the September 4 video post for a couple of minutes, I felt good about having just transferred my domain names to Dotster. Parsons holds forth with a couple of his GoDaddy babes wearing a Marines "semper fi" t-shirt.
The guy defended torture at Gitmo. Doesn't sound to me like he truly represents the proud Marine tradition.
For these reasons, with some trepidation I clicked Dotster's "transfer domain" link earlier today and started the process of moving my domain registrations away from GoDaddy.
An hour or so later, I came away feeling that if our nuclear arsenal has security procedures as tight as what's involved in shifting a domain name to a different registrar, there's no need to worry about an accidental WW III.
On the Dotster web site I typed in the names of the four domains, such as "brianhines.com", that I wanted to transfer from GoDaddy. Then the "fun" (quotation marks added for irony) began. I'd read:
Due to a change at the com/net registry, transfer regulations have changed for all .COM and .NET domain names. Authorization codes will now be required to transfer domain names to Dotster.
To obtain an authorization code, you will need to contact your current registrar. You will be required to provide this authorization code to complete the domain transfer process with us.
I headed over to the GoDaddy site. Searched the Help files. Found that an "authorization" link supposedly was on the domain name page, once I logged in with my user name and password. Except, the link wasn't there. I looked everywhere. Couldn't find it.
Phoned GoDaddy support. Got a nice lady. Fantasized that she looked like the girls in the Super Bowl ad. Almost certainly didn't. But she was competent and helpful.
Told me that I needed to turn off the domain name locking feature. Walked me through the process on my laptop. Reached the page where the registration info was shown. Told me, "the authorization code will be sent to your email address," which she read off.
"But that isn't my email address now," I said. "Then you need to edit the info under domain name administrator. Be sure not to change anything under registrar, or you won't be able to request a domain name transfer for 60 days."
That 60 day policy seemingly goes against ICANN rules, as this irritated GoDaddy customer says in his tale of a frustrated domain name transfer. (That post is on an anti-GoDaddy site, NoDaddy: "Exposing the Many Reasons Not to Trust GoDaddy with Your Domain Names.")
I dutifully entered my new email address into the "administrator" section of each domain name registration. Then I clicked the authorization links, which had appeared after doing the unlocking thing.
In fairly short order four emails arrived from GoDaddy, each containing a lengthy authorization code for a domain name transfer. Then I logged into my new Dotster account, wondering how the transfers were going from their end, since I hadn't gotten an expected email telling me what to do with the authorization codes.
I saw that the email already had been sent. But, not surprisingly, to the email address shown on the administrator info -- which I'd just changed. Luckily (this must happen fairly often) Dotster had an option to resend the email.
Which soon arrived at my current email address. Then I just had to re-visit the Dotster web page and copy in the authorization codes sent to me by GoDaddy. After a mere 20 email messages from GoDaddy and Dotster, I got the happy Dotster news:
Good news - Transfer of the following domain(s) is now complete.