Friday, February 19, 2010

"Your flight has been diverted by a hijacker"

Don Wheeler

If you made it here you likely noticed that where you used to go is either frozen in time at February 4, 2010, or not working at all.  The latter is what's going on as I write this.

The domain name I have used ( had expired, but I missed the notice from Google.  I actually never got a notice that it had expired - just that it would.  Unfortunately, the email looked a lot like many of the junk mail pieces I get from them weekly and I flat missed it.

You would think that if you owed somebody money for a service they would rightfully cut you off.  You would then know that you needed to address a problem.  In this case about $15 dollars would have done it.  But that's not how it works on Google Planet.

Instead, nothing seems to change.  Your little enterprise chugs along normally.  But what you don't know is that your domain is made available in the market place.  And here's where the story gets even stranger.

Early Wednesday morning I was catching up on some posting.  All seemed to be normal.  When I got to the third item, suddenly things stopped working.  Posts I entered no longer appeared on the blog.  I was highly vexed but I had to go to paying work and figured I'd dig into the problem that afternoon.  Once back, I saw my site had been"parked courtesy of"  I wasn't sure what that meant but I thought a place to start might be .  Once there I tried to get to "my account" and make adjustments, but kept getting an error notice that I entered an incorrect email address.  Stymied, I chose the nuclear option - I phoned GoDaddy support.

After a pretty good wait, a very helpful gentleman tried to sort things out.  He explained the domain payment had been requested but not received.  I am one of those weirdos whose default email settings is to save and I told him very indignantly that a search of over 4000 emails showed no hit for  To which he politely responded, "No, they wouldn't have been from us.  It would have come from googleapps."  I changed the search to that and my heart sank when I saw two entries from last December.

I really want to emphasize that this guy was really, really nice.  He tried to be helpful, but there wasn't much he could do for me.  The upshot was that my domain had been purchased by one Joseph Troyer of Troyer Consulting - Millersburg, Ohio.

Well that explains everything, I'll bet you're thinking.  A guy with a website consulting service in Godknowswhere, Ohio was coveting a domain:  because he knew it could take his business "to the next level".  Maybe not.

There really are only two logical possibilities.  Either this guy is a good old fashioned free-enterprizer hoping to extort some money from me - or he wants to cut off our discussion.  I've yet to receive a ransom demand.

For any of you who wish to communicate your appreciation for your inconvenience, Joe can be emailed at .  Or if you prefer the phone, give him a call at (330) 473-9045.  Let ol' Joe know just how special he is.

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