Man claims GoDaddy canceled domains after transfer unlock

Asif Ali is the latest to find fault with shifty domain registrar GoDaddy.

Me: “Why did you release a domain that belonged to me..the registration was still active. And two days before the domain expired, I renewed the .co domain at $30 for a year”.
Agent: “Since the domain was close to expiry so we released it”.

At Hacker News, Chris Acky points out the behavioral patterns that GoDaddy exploits to increase the likelihood of expensive renewals.

Not many people know this, but you pay 30% more for domain renewals if they are set to auto-renew. ... Now, with the customers feeling outraged that they are being charged more, they cancel the auto-renew, and they get to put on an even larger charge. It is a horrendous dark-pattern that first of all exploits a customers continued goodwill by keeping up auto-renew, and then secondly, from trying to save money, GoDaddy exploit users who are trying to make their money stretch just a little further.

Buying domains from GoDaddy is like going to dinner with Hannibal Lecter: you have only yourself to blame if the chicken tastes funny.


      1. It probably is, but so what? If it annoys you, strip off the referral part.

        I for one can’t see why I should care if the person who referred me to a service receives ten bucks off their next month’s fees — especially as, if I sign up for and enjoy the service, I’d actually be thankful to whoever referred me.

    1. I’ll chalk up a love for, who I have used for nearly a decade. Never any hassle or pressure, just a flat payment each year ($15 maybe?) and they have always responded to any inquiries I’ve had about it promptly and well. 

  1. I bet network solutions reads stories like this and cackles in glee. Finally, some other registrar is more evil and incompetent than they are!

    1. Their awful commercials get all the press while the hundred other far more important reasons they suck are ignored.

      Who the hell associates sex appeal with domain registry anyway? I can see getting laid through some combination of cologne, clothes, cars, liquor, that sort of thing, but “Who’s your registrar?” is not going to work as a pickup line anytime soon. (Unless the answer is “Not GoDaddy.”)

  2. I can taste the stink of “Oh shit, someone fucked up” exuding from the GoDaddy supervisors. On top of that, whoever gambled that the $80 fee wasn’t worth the bad press probably also screwed up.

    My guess is that the cause is the combination of a clumsy or irate (now ex-) employee, a corner-case bug in whatever craptastic system GoDaddy uses to manage its backend, and customer-unfriendly policy from the top.

    This happens all the time. Having worked at a quite large hosting company, I’ve seen data centers reclaim customer servers. I’ve seen a bug scrap VPSes that were hours overdue with payment, rather than months. I’ve seen presumably technical people at the top deny the existence of said bug for as long as possible.

    Seriously, though, it’s like something out of The Jungle.

    1. Hah, are you kidding? These schmucks don’t care if the tech world shares these stories. They’re aiming for the kinds of people who buy a domain after seeing a super bowl commercial.

  3. They pulled a similar stunt on me. I took a chance no one would pick up the domain and waited. Then I moved all my go daddy stuff to 1 and 1. I have been very happy with their service.

  4. The amazing thing to me is that still uses GoDaddy, after saying they were going to transition away from the over a year ago. GoDaddy appears to support everything Randall Munroe says he hates.

    1. What, seriously? Transitioning hosts is not that hard, I’ve done it for a few people and each time they’ve gotten more for less. The only thing I could see being an issue is backing up the database, but surely he could pay a relatively small fee for that and split.

  5. I saved this from last year when I was looking to make the move:

    I got stuck for another year when one of my email addresses needed updating, leading godaddy to lock the site (“preventing fraud”) for 3 months after I changed it.

  6. You know, I almost feel like GoDaddy customers deserve the abuse they get from GoDaddy.

    You saw the sleazy, awful commercials and still you decided to do business with this corporation. What do you expect?

    1. I started using godaddy before the sleazy commercials and the elephant hunting. I tried to move all my domains a year or so ago after the big blow up over the elephant hunting and they made it really difficult for me. Will try again someday when I get a spare hour or three. 

  7. I was on GoDaddy. Went to and never looked back. And this isn’t just a testimonial – there are so many other, better places.

    GoDaddy is the rat-infested McDonald’s of web hosting. 

  8. GoDaddy are absolute crooks.  I can’t count the number of stories of people who have searched domain name availabiity using GoDaddy, only to find the next time they searched that the name had been subsequently registered … by GoDaddy. Who conveniently offered to sell it upon inquiry. Their sexist ads alone are reason enough to want nothing to do with them. Having a CEO who brags about hunting elephants really is the clincher. I wish there’d be an internet campaign to shine a harsh light of truth on them, but — like AOL — their stock in trade is user ignorance, and so they probably won’t lose business any time soon.

    1. That’s called “domain kiting” and my experience–as well as the testimony of GoDaddy’s Bob Parsons–is that GoDaddy doesn’t engage in that practice. In fact, of the hundreds of domains I’ve searched for and purchased over the years, GoDaddy has never been guilty of this. You may hate their ads, their relentless upselling, their occasional poor customer service, their wonky hosting, or any number of things, but I would bet they are not guilty of domain kiting.

  9. This happened to me. I didn’t renew a domain name in time and they have been holding that name hostage ever since – even five years later it will cost me hundreds of dollars to get the name back. I don’t need the domain name but would like to have it back as it is a business name I established and may wish to use again. I know no one else needs it. I have transferred all my hosting to BlueHost and all my domain registrations to I will never do business with GoDaddy again and I loudly encourage everyone to find other companies to work with.

  10. Godaddy should spend more money on salaries for technical support personnel instead of buying such expensive ads. There are many complaints about bad support from cheap employees abroad. See among others

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