Why Do I Hate GoDaddy? Let Me Count the Ways.

Why Do I Hate GoDaddy? Let Me Count the Ways.

Contrary to what their Super Bowl ads would have you believe, GoDaddy is actually pretty awful.

GoDaddy is sexist

Let’s get this out of the way first- both because it’s a doozy, and it’s probably the most widely-known reason that GoDaddy is horrendous.

Everyone who watched Super Bowl XLVI (2012, Giants v Patriots) will remember GoDaddy’s “Body Paint” ad, which was disgusting for a handful of reasons. You know, the one where Danica Patrick and Gillian Michaels paint a whole bunch of domain name buzzphrases onto a model that is heavily implied to be nude (telling the viewers to check out the full version online).

I’m not saying that women should be covered up or ashamed of their bodies or anything and generally think that the US would be better off if we were all a little less prudish. I am explicitly not saying that.

What I am saying is that shit like this gives the tech industry a bad name and perpetuates its mysogynistic culture. Everyone who works in high tech knows that it’s really dude-heavy:

Women are one of many groups currently under-represented in several areas of open technology and culture. Recent surveys have shown that around 2-5% of open source developers are women (compared to 20-30% of the larger tech industry), and that women represent just 10-15% of Wikipedia editors.

 source: The ADA Initiative

That’s… really bad. And advertising that’s based on the sexiness of the models you hired rather than the actual service you provide is actively contributing to the problem.

GoDaddy insults its employees

More GoDaddy commercial awfulness: their current set of ads is all about how it’s sexy ladies in the front and pimply nerds in the back.

This is what GoDaddy thinks about me.

This is what GoDaddy thinks about me.

As a professional computer nerd, this is particularly frustrating to me. There is no reason that attractive, socially-competent women can’t be into computers. Furthermore, not all computer experts are pizza-faced little trolls who are so unpleasant to look upon that that the very idea of them kissing an attractive woman is inherently “funny”. In fact, none of the professional computer nerds I’ve met look anything like that.

Besides being personally insulting, this seems like a really bad business decision. GoDaddy is really making fun of the people that they admit are responsible for running their business? That sounds like a mentally healthy working environment.

GoDaddy locks you in

One of the free services that GoDaddy “provides” you with is what they call Domain Locking. The way it works is that if you change information in your DNS record (such as where the name points, your email address, phone number, etc), GoDaddy blocks any attempt to transfer control of the name to another registrar.

Put another way, if you tinker with your domain name and then decide you want to transfer to another registrar (not terribly uncommon), then too bad; you’re stuck with GoDaddy for another two months. Hope you still remember you wanted to transfer registrars by then!

Another insidious “service” they provide is actually an upsell called Private Registration. For a small fee, GoDaddy will list their own contact information on your domain name record instead of yours. That way anyone looking up the domain won’t see your name and contact info.

The problem here is that the whois record (where the contact information for a domain name is stored) is considered the legal ownership of a name. It’s like the deed to a property. So, if GoDaddy is listed on the whois record for your domain name, they are considered the legal owner.

GoDaddy supported SOPA

The Stop Online Privacy Act was a horrible bill that was, as its name (doesn’t) imply, was designed to combat copyright infringement. Among other things, the bill would require entire web sites shut down if infringing material was found on a single page. Or, for that matter, if links to infringing material was found.

This would effectively kill torrent trackers and, well, any site with user-generated content (such as YouTube and Facebook). For a registrar and site hosting company to support this bill was a pretty big middle finger to its customers, since they wanted to side with the MPAA and RIAA over those who pay for service.

After a massive boycott and transfer campaign, GoDaddy reversed its support for unprecedented censorship on the internet. It only took tens of thousands of their own consumers jumping ship to realize an abhorrent business decision.


These are just a handful of reasons why GoDaddy is terrible, and they don’t even get into what it’s like to actually use their service. I’ve never heard a good thing about their interface or customer service, so let’s just all agree that it’s awful and never mention it again.

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