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Godaddy Hosting to Delete Wedding Photos

digitalloving (1540905) writes | more than 4 years ago


digitalloving (1540905) writes "I recently got an email from GoDaddy threatening to delete my wedding photos off my hosting account. They stated I was in violation of their Terms of Service because "All files that are stored on a hosting account must be used for a working traditional website.". After getting clarification about what working and traditional mean, I found that they meant every file on my site needs to be referenced from a website or it is considered "online storage". I explained to them that the files were uploaded in preparation for creating a web album for my wedding photos. They responded saying "If it is not your intention to, within a reasonable time frame, build websites utilizing the content, then the content should be removed from the hosting account until such a time that you are prepared to create live sites.". At this point, I responded saying that I have the intent to build a live site with this content and I believe the time frame to be reasonable. I also pointed out that their Terms of Service state "You shall not use the Services as: ((i) a repository or instrument for placing or storing archived files.". I did not believe I violated the Term of Service because my files were not for archival purposes. To this they responded with the same argument about a traditional website.

While a technical solution to the problem would be listing all of my directories for download, I find this intrusion, harassment, and complete lack of regard for a reasonable argument frustrating. They sell me an "unlimited" account of which I am using (1gb) of storage total and they are trying to delete content already? This policy truly surprises me and I wanted others to be forewarned. Is this policy normal for hosting companies?"


You're Wrong (1)

Alanbly (1433229) | more than 4 years ago | (#29996962)

If you're "going to" make an album, then make it on your hard drive like the rest of the competent webmasters then upload the pictures then upload the page. You obviously have no intention of uploading the page that links the pictures in the next day or so, so they have a legitimate concern that you are using them as an online file storage area. Just ask yourself why the photos are on the site if they aren't linked from a page, it is perhaps so that you can show them to people? So that you can download them to others' computers?

There really isn't a justification for uploading them without a page given the terms of the contract.

Re:You're Wrong (1)

Balsamic Moon (849526) | more than 4 years ago | (#30003250)

No you are wrong and an idiot if you think that competent webmasters only create things on their own hard drives then upload. I design websites all day long, hard code, standard compliant css, via up to 20 ssh terminal windows open directly to those servers.

Whether somepic1.jpg, somepic2.jpg somepic3.jpg are being used in a webpage or just sitting in their own directory while you share their actual physical links is none of their business. Unless they make it their business to micromanage which is in very poor taste. Who's to say you don't know how to code your own site, but you still want GoDaddy to HOST your pictures while you share links to them in emails, messages, etc. You are paying them to HOST, it shouldn't matter how the content is delivered.

In answer to your question, no, it is not normal hosting policy.

Re:You're Wrong (1)

digitalloving (1540905) | more than 4 years ago | (#30005610)

I appreciate the response to my question. Had I known that GoDaddy was going to interpret their policy in such an obtuse way, I don't think I would have gone with them in the first place. Unfortunately, it is a significant time commitment to move my 18 domains and 2 hosting accounts from their services. So, now I'm required to do something patently stupid (serve all of my content in directory listings) so that I don't violate their TOS.

I wanted to post this so that others could avoid their hosting service if they don't want to be harassed for doing, in my opinion, normal web development.

Re:You're Wrong (1)

blackest_k (761565) | more than 4 years ago | (#30005674)

Quite true with sshfs you can keep everything mounted on whatever system you are using at the time and work with the remote host directly mounted in your home directory.

I guess if you are only used to windows you would be uploading and downloading constantly. It's also easy to refresh the images on a site when they are on the site already.

Godaddy are being difficult for no good reason my experience with other hosts is better.

Re:You're Wrong (1)

Alanbly (1433229) | more than 4 years ago | (#30006868)

It is explicitly stated in GoDaddy's contract that they are being paid to host you website and not to host your files. If it "shouldn't matter" then you should have negotiated the contract better. Now I don't agree in the slightest with GoDaddy trying to put it in the contract but that's a whole other matter.

In regards to your ad hominem attack, I'll reassert that it is stupid and unprofessional to edit any live website page or other content and that you're an idiot if you do not think that it drives away customers every time you make the most minor of mistakes. Every legitimate website out there, be it apple, amazon, google, etc... spend a considerable amount of effort making their pages actually work well and exude the brand image they are going for. You cannot, and should not try to, do this in situ if you value your image at all. If you build web pages on the command line in the customer facing environment, then more power to you but I'd fire you on the spot and I feel bad for the owners of any web page you manage.

Re:You're Wrong (1)

digitalloving (1540905) | more than 4 years ago | (#30007870)

It is explicitly stated in GoDaddy's contract that I can do anything I would like with files besides "You shall not use the Services as: ((i) a repository or instrument for placing or storing archived files." There are other clauses in the contract forbidding hosting copyrighted works, blatantly offensive things, and viruses. In my situation, and the situation that balsamic moon states, there is no violation of their Terms of Service. If you believe that the use case specified is in violation then just show me where and I won't complain about it.

Your style of development is certainly one way to go about it, but the issues you imply occur with other peoples development methods are rooted in your ignorance of their methods. I can infer this, because if you did understand it you wouldn't be making such statements. Bottom line is that it doesn't effect you, due to the awesome and perfect way that you "make web pages". However, some of us have more complex development issues that require us to put files on servers before explicitly sharing them in a way that is not "stupid and unprofessional".

Re:You're Wrong (1)

Alanbly (1433229) | more than 4 years ago | (#30008050)

It's also explicitly stated that "Go Daddy reserves the right to terminate Your access to the Services at any time, without notice, for any reason whatsoever. " and "You agree not to engage in unacceptable use of any Services, which includes, without limitation, use of the Services to: ... viii. engage in any other activity deemed by Go Daddy to be in conflict with the spirit or intent of this Agreement or any Go Daddy policy" oh and you should really look at clause ii of the line you keep quoting "(ii) placing or storing material that can be downloaded through other web sites". They're so well covered it's laughable. And I'm not arguing that you put content up in stages, I'm arguing that you have most of the work done before you start uploading. You said you were uploading "in preparation for creating a web album for my wedding photos" meaning you haven't started work. Long post short, you are violating the contract.

Re:You're Wrong (1)

digitalloving (1540905) | more than 4 years ago | (#30011300)

GoDaddy does have the right to terminate my service at any time for any reason. Although stating this is inappropriate for making any argument at all. Using your logic, everyone is potentially violating their policy so no one should ever bitch no matter what they do. If someone said "Hey, Godaddy deleted every account that has any pro/anti democrat/republican materials." You'd say "Don't bitch, they're allowed." If this were the case, I would expect to see an article on slashdot letting people know so they could avoid their hosting service.

As for clause viii, I believe my actions are in the spirit or intent of the agreement. This is again a completely overly broad statement that protects them in all situations. See above why this is a bad argument.

I have looked at clause ii already and it doesn't apply at all to my site. I am storing photos from my wedding, which are not available on any anyone else's site. This is the first argument that is specific, but doesn't involve me.

If indeed the first two clauses incriminate me, then they incriminate every other GoDaddy user. The third clause doesn't pertain to me. Case closed. Thanks for clearing that up.....

Re:You're Wrong (1)

rstory (155367) | more than 4 years ago | (#30007832)

In answer to your question, no, it is not normal hosting policy.

I think it is common for the places that advertise very high storage limits... Dreamhost does the same thing.. though I had to get up to tens of gigabytes, not just 1, before I got smacked down by them..

Re:You're Wrong (1)

digitalloving (1540905) | more than 4 years ago | (#30007918)

I'd expect a smackdown for blatant usage, and am totally reasonable about the issue. I talked to their staff and explained to them the files and the reason I had them. They were unwavering in upholding, what I believe, to be a misrepresentation of their policy.

Hummm (1)

digitalloving (1540905) | more than 4 years ago | (#30000572)

Your argument makes sense except that I have multiple people contributing to the content on my site. They are uploading photos to the site so that I can load a web album when the photo collection is complete. I don't feel like this use case labels me "incompetent", although I appreciate the criticism. In fact, some very competent people have multiple contributors to content on their site that is uploaded asynchronously. While the content is not available for public consumption that exact moment, it still doesn't make sense to keep this information any place other than where it will eventually reside. It is my contention that this process of web development should be allowed.

Another thing I think should be pointed out, most web albums consist of server side code that process photos on the server's folders. So, "making an album on my hard drive" doesn't make a whole lot of sense in most contexts.
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