Hostgator FAIL

Today Bad Kitty became aware of a site which scrapes and reposts others’ content as its own.  So Bad Kitty looked up the hosting company which holds the site.  It turned out to be Hostgator.

For an internet service provider, Hostgator’s method of being informed of copyright breaches is rather backward.  You can’t do it online, via web form or via e-mail.  You have to do it by post or by fax.

Yes folks, that’s right.  By post or by fax.

What year are we in again?

Hostgator seem to be stuck in the 1990s.

If the site concerned steals and reports content from a non-US site that means either an overseas rate fax (an outdated technology) or a letter to the US which could take anything up to 8 weeks to arrive.  There is no guaranteed delivery from many countries to the US.

In the vernacular, this is a big fat FAIL from Hostgator.  If Twitter and Google can use web based forms for reporting copyright breaches, why can’t Hostgator?

Hostgator tweeted to say that their management would love to hear feedback and to send any recommendations to feedback(at)

Bad Kitty’s recommendation to Hostgator is to get up to speed. This is 2013, not 1993.


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Comments: 2

  1. Molly July 14, 2013 at 8:40 pm Reply

    I sent me in an email format. They have started a ticket so I shall be interested to see what their response is. We did find on their forums Hostgator reporting that emails will be looked at so we shall see.

    I do agree with you, however I also think that it should not be easy to report this stuff, as it deters false malicious reporting as sending a letter or making a call will often put people off. I guess the key is to find a balance between the two and for hosting companies to not just pull the plug and then investigate but gives sites a warning to remove the content before they do


    • badkitty July 14, 2013 at 8:59 pm Reply

      Hi Molly,

      Thanks for your thoughts on this. Being devil’s advocate for a moment, it’s interesting that various bodies are able to file DMCA complaints and get allegedly “infringing” content removed very quickly yet folks like us have to go through some backward process to get anything like the same kind of result.

      Twitter and Google have such forms so why can’t Hostgator? There’s tech available to prevent automated bot entries from web pages so that excuse doesn’t hold much water. The other side of the coin is that DMCA requests are often posted in full on Given the nature of the stuff we blog about putting our full names and addresses on such requests is not an option for many of us and would put us off making the request in the first place.

      Bad Kitty would expect the hosting company to investigate the complaint and send a warning with a clear timescale, taking the site offline if the infringing material is not removed by that deadline. If the site is a multiple offender (like the one discussed today) then that deserves much less flexibility.

      From what I’ve seen of this particular site, I’d question how much original content is there. Also I’d report their Twitter accounts to Twitter and get them investigated from that angle.

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