Banner photo of Larry Eugene Meredith, Patrick Flynn and Ronald Tipton, 2016.

The good times are memories
In the drinking of elder men...

-- Larry E.
Time II

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Sneak Thieves in the Cyber Night

"Some will rob you with a six-gun,And some with a fountain pen." - Woody Guthrie, "Pretty Boy Floyd"

And some do it with a keystroke and mouse click - Larry Meredith, just now.

I'd say these curs lay about in the bushes at night waiting for the unaware prey to amble unsuspectingly by, but they probably figured out some robotic way of doing their dirty deed.

Well, everybody's out to make a living, I guess or at least a couple bucks. It's just some of us have been willing to work for our bread and butter at something that gives a benefit to somebody in some small way, stockbrokers, insurance companies and politicians exempted of course. Even phony beggars have the guts and decency to show their faces on the streets and put on a show.

These people are basically worthless mold, useless fungi, boot scrapings marring the pathways of our lives. They are practitioners of virtual kidnapping and extortion. They are domain snatchers. I suppose we have to grant them being a step or two above hackers who poison the web world with vicious viruses and identity thieves, but that doesn't make them nice people. Probably what they do is perfectly legal, but it shouldn't be.

Can anyone give me any justification for what they do?

Here is what they do. They troll about somehow looking for domain names that they think have a value to someone and then they snatch the name and offer to sell it for a higher price. They seem to come in two flavors, both about as tasteless as the other.

One kind of buys up domain names they think will be wanted, such as a product name, business or person gaining fame. Hey, you're an emerging singer named Sandy Songbird fresh off American Idol, just gaining some rep and you want a domain to promote your blossoming career. You want people to be able to search for sandy songbird.com and have you pop up, but you discover some mud-encrusted bottom feeder has already snatched up "songbird", "sandysongbird", "songbird", "songbirdsandy" and any other convolution of your name they can think of, and they have done it for .com., net, .org, .info and every other dot whatever out there. However, they'' be happy to sell you the right to your own name for a few thousand dollars.

Then there is the other form of these germs. These watch the registries of existing names about to expire and if the holder doesn't renew on the tick of the deadline, they snatch up the name. Then they can offer it back to that holder for a high price because they believe the person has established their whereabouts and won't want to lose that domain.

Yeah, that's what just befell your's truly. I had three domain names kidnapped this past summer, www.nitewrit.com, www.nitewrit.info and www.lemeredith. They were my oldest Blogs, including my first, "Night Writing in the Morning Light". They other two were my "Nitewrit's Own Companion and Commentary of the Gospels" and "Write On; The Official Website of The Kid and The Old Goat". 

It's my own fault for not keeping on top of things. But I have been dealing with a major family crisis the last six months and not doing much else. Anyone ever following me, if there still are, will have noticed my absents from the blogging scene for mucho weeks recently. Thus, I wasn't thinking about my domain renewals coming up in July.

In normal times I wouldn't have had to. You see, I had my domain's set for automatic renewal against my credit card. Should have been seamless, really; except my bank was acquired by another bank at the end of last year and that bank replaced all my previous cards, including THAT credit card with new ones of their own brand and so when automatic renewal time came about, the domain keeper couldn't find my bank anymore and my domain was quickly snatched up by these bottom feeders.

I tried at first to simply change the domain to one at Blogspot, but they had barred any domain change. Fortunately in Blogger you can retain all your previous posts and comments by a simple download and then upload to a new Blog, so my Blogs still exist, just at different domain names. I'm not going to charge someone some ridiculous fee just to get my old domain names back. Having your own private domain is kind of a pride thing anyway, not really all that important.

I did lose my statistics and, sadly, my followers. So I have the challenge of building new followers or hope some of those who liked those Blogs will find me again. I am planning to be actively scribbling my thoughts and opinions regularly once more at "Night Writing in the Morning Light," now at www.lemnite.blogspot.com and add to "Nitewrit's New Own Companion and Commentary of the Gospels" at www.lemcompanion.blogspot.com. 

I just hope whoever gloms on to my old domain addresses doesn't post anything salacious or scandalous in case an old reader stumbles upon them thinking I have turned to the dark side.