I purchased SuperHeroBoy.com last year after I took the famous picture of Connor in his beloved super hero cape. Actually what really entertains me about him and his cape as he calls himself "naked boy" as well his super hero power seems to be being naked. So after our little domain mishap I figured we needed a fresh start and seeing as that super hero picture hangs in my computer room, what better domain to use than superheroboy.com?
I have to say I'm a little sad about loosing Seven Dogs and a Baby. Your domain in so many ways becomes a second name for you and it just seems habit to type it in to work on posts. Ive caught myself doing just that several times even today. Not that we still have seven dogs, we actually have four now, and there will soon be two little boys in the household. When we started though it was really a good description to the madness that was my life and what fueled this blog. We are growing and I had actually meant to make the domain change this coming summer, this little mishap just forced my hand at a really bad time. Just days before giving birth to my second son was not exactly the moment I would have choosen myself to make a domain change or to be scrambling for new logos or campaigning for all our links to be changed. Life throws you curve balls when you least expect.
What I have learned from this is really quite invaluable though. I'm no stranger to the internet, no stranger to internet marketing, and no stranger to the type of people who lerk out there ready to feed on any scraps they can get their hands on. For those of you that don't know me personally the internet has been a huge part of my life even before the "internet" existed. I grew up running a BBS dedicated to underground zines, hackers, and true cyber culture. I wrote articles for some of the first publications that made it on what we call the internet back when it was barely more than a text based distribution method for the most part colleges and college kids. I registered and lost a domain that would have made most of you blush purely for fun, back when you couldn't register domains that were considered "controversial". My first real boys were in internet marketing and computer security so if anyone should have been on top of my domain situation, it should have been me. This pregancy has taken its toll on me and I have to admit I was not paying attention like I should have been and this is the price I pay for that. However I think the last three years I've spent working purely in the bloggy world has forced me to let my guard down. You'd think after spending more than half of my life working in and around hackers and internet security I would be more than aware of the scum that exists out there.
The domain part was Google's mistake but I should have caught it before it went to the point of loosing my domain. I noticed the charges for my domains renewing and It never even occurred to me that the charges were short and one of the domains were not being billed. Next time I will certainly pay more attention. What really kills me though is the douche bag who purchased my domain. I sent him a super nice email explaining the situation and offered to buy it back. This is after all my source of a living, as small of an income as I get this blog allows me to stay at home while I go to school and be with my boys. I would be embarrassed to tell you how much time I put into it and how much money I make, lets just say I'd make far more working a fast food job part time... but I really enjoy what I do. He graciously *cough* offered to loan me back my domain in exchange for his "links" but refused to sell it back to me. And then proceeded to copy our entire blog down to the videos of my ultrasound and pictures of my children onto his server. Basically creating a doppelganger of our original website and basically planned to use it to place his links to raise the pagerank of his own sites while taking advantage of all the back links other blogs have given me over the past three years. The problem with this little scenario is that my friends is plagiarism and is covered by the DMCA act of 1998. Personally one of my favorite internet laws and a good one for all bloggers to learn about as its very common for these "fake blogs" to crop up and post and repost our articles to make themselves look like a real blog so they can sell links and advertising. It's purely a way to cheat your way into page rank and fool Google. He has thus taken them down but I did keep a captured and printed log of both the process of him grabbing my files and pages as well as the finished stolen blog. The whole process felt like I was being violated as much of the content that I post is very personal as well as our family photos that were included. It just makes me feel dirty to be honest like someone raided your panty drawer and tried them on.
Overall our little domain switch is a good thing, it just wasn't the way I had imagined doing it. Live and learn..