Yes, more SOPA/PIPA news. Yeah, I know.

The bill is still active, but as support flees the chance to kill it completely increases. I'm also expecting some recriminations from those claiming support of people who weren't told they were supporting it.

Steven Savage

Oh Daddy – A roundup of the latest GoDaddy/SOPA mess

Where to start.  We'll I'll start by mentioning there were other issues capturing my attention, but I am merely one man, albeit a handsome and charming one with a killer fedora.

Anyway, so let's see where we are.

GoDaddy has been accused of slowing domain name transfers, mostly by happy rival Namecheap who's been benefiting from their troubles.  GoDaddy has responded that they have not exactly slowed them, but put some limits in place due to "nefarious" activity.  I'm honestly not sure how much they're hurting, but they seem concerned – and really, using the word "nefarious" is bad PR.

It appears GoDaddy has been happy to turn off domains before for minor conditions.  This is one complaint, but it's interesting to read.  If there are more issues like this they may come to light.

There's an attempt to organize a "Dump GoDaddy Day" on the 29th of December.

Yeah, I know.


  • I'm not sure how much this is hurting GoDaddy money-wise.  I've not seen reliable long-term numbers (well long-term for how short-term this is).  It is clear they are at least worried.
  • They've gotten a black eye in the internet-savvy community – essentially their bad action has become meme.  This is nearly impossible to recover from.  They may not be defeated or destroyed, but they will be marked.
  • The domain-name transfer throttling doesn't necessarily have to be true – people will assume it is due to their actions and attitude.  That's a sign of bad PR.
  • Speaking of PR, theirs is abysmal.  This is a great example of what not to do, PR-wise.
  • If the story about the domain closing noted above is true, and other stories are out there that are similar, it will fuel further bad will towards them.  Wait to see if there are other disgruntled people out there.
  • Seeing how NameCheap jumped on this is a reminder of how fast business can change when so much is electronic.  You can be riding on top and then get upset very, very quickly – because people can take advantage of your problems/mistakes/stupidity very fast.

– Steven Savage

The Battlelines in SOPA Get Clearer

Looks like the whole SOPA mess is heating up, and we're seeing some pretty deep lines in the sand get drawn.  The list that came out

That single list has produced quite the reaction – and I doubt we're done yet.  Actually, I think it's probably tame as it's the holiday season.

So analysis

  • Of course keep following this.
  • A mass movement of domains out of GoDaddy could become serious since, well, GoDaddy pretty much handles domains.  They've had past controversies, but this could mark them in a destructive manner, especially if their support goes "meme" or inspires people to dig up dirt on them.  If you work there you'll want to watch this carefully as it may affect your job.
  • The GoDaddy issue may inspire other registrars to take sides (my guess is "not supporting SOPA" is a good bet).
  • We'll see more battleines be drawn I'm sure.  The awareness is increasing – as is the anger – and the list that was released gives people viable targets for their rage (especially if any of those companies were ones they hated beforehand).  The entire SOPA mess has "gone meme" – and it also means it won't go away even if SOPA goes away.
  • This is revealing something I've suspected for awhile but have had trouble articulating – there are some businesses for whom openeness/communication/freedom are built into their business model, and others where it's at best optional.  We're seeing a battle of approaches to business here (among many other things).  Hey, you economics writers could do a lot with this.

Steven Savage