SandraOfftheStrip deleted from Bluehost database

Uncategorized | | May 3, 2009 at 15:58

You noticed that sandraoffthestrip disappeared in March.  Recall you have always been cautioned to be careful about what you put out on the web, cause once it’s posted, it’s there forever.  NOT TRUE!

My hosting server, Bluehost.com, COMPLETELY DELETED ALL FILES for sandraoffthestrip.com, INCLUDING BACKUPS, with only an email notice of 14 days and totally without my knowlege or permission. 

Understand that this email notice was sent to an obscure email address which was used only for administration of the site.  I was in the middle of a big move and didn’t look at the site – or check its admin email – for a period of 17 days.  During this critical time, Bluehost completely deleted EVERYTHING without any other notification process – no second email to backup email address, no letter, no phonecall – NADA.  Just deletion without sufficient notification resulting in almost two years of writing gone, with no way to retrieve except in bits and pieces.

My account was paid, that was not the problem.  The explanation was that my site was first suspended, then deleted because of "abuse."  When I asked specifically what that "abuse" was, I got vague responses.  Apparently my SQL was exceeded.  Sandraoffthestrip had so many hits that my site brought down the other 300 on the server.  The probability of that seems very very slim indeed.  And if the traffic was that great (which is more than unlikely), then why wasn’t I switched to another server, notified of the change and asked to send more money?

I never received a satisfactory explanation from anyone at Bluehost.com.  In fact, their customer service supervisors were downright rude. 

I had begun having problems with overloading warnings in Fall 08, when I made phone calls to Bluehost tech support and emails went back and forth.  With no further problems noted on my end, I continued until Feb 09 when the site was suspended, then DELETED, including ALL COPIES.  How much space does it take to save one copy of one database from one blog??????

The customer service rep informed me that the order came from the highest level in their department.  They also told me that even if I had responded to that single email informing me that the account was being suspended, they would have instructed me to find another server – that they would no longer support the site.

So what exactly happened?  Did my site get hijacked and used for porn or gambling?  There was certainly no visual indication of that when I viewed the content.  I find it reprehensible that Bluehost. com did not have the decency to give me a letter of explanation at any time during this process (or lack thereof.)

I CAUTION ANYONE WHO USES BLUEHOST TO BEWARE OF THEIR COMMITMENT TO THEIR CUSTOMERS.  They unilaterally DELETED the entire database and all copies with only one caution email.

I am only now able to get the site partially back up because I had used someone in India to help me with a few updates in Feb 08.  It is their copy of the site that you see now. 

I had attracted a very large following in Germany (larger than in the US) which began last fall.   I had altered the focus of the site with articles and commentary on diverse, very relevant social, political and environmental issues.  All is apparently lost. 

I can’t tell you how painful that was for me.  And Bluehost just doesn’t give a damn.  They may be cheap to host your site, but cheapest is definitely not best.  I’m now paying more ($25 a month), but believe my new host will have the decency to send me more than one email before they decide to dump me with no lifeboat or life preserver.

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