A Question of Liability

I posted this after the event in question. I repost it now because of the referenced bout with godaddy, who I can now tell to SUCK IT!

Recently, Wesley Snipes received a three-year jail sentence for not filing a tax return. The accountants who he hired received stiffer sentences, but the question remains: should Wesley Snipes go to jail based on the bad advice of others? This brings up the issue of liability.

It reminds me of a recent bout I had with GoDaddy technical support. You see, I have to use a screen-reader, so javascript mouseclick events tend to not work as optimally. In this case, I refer to activating various functions within the GoDaddy control panels menu, a rather essential feature. I told the well-meaning tech this, and he first asked if I could get a sighted person to help me with my account. It royally angers me when people suggest this, as if a blind person has an army of sighted servants at all times. It doesn’t work that way, just so you know. He then told me that he could not alter my account, for “liability reasons.” This took the cake for me, as I just spent a respectable amount of money transferring my domains to them.

This started me thinking about liability. If I have to get a friend to help me modify my account, and his machine gets compromised without his knowledge, and some cracker gets my administrator information and uses it for ill, whom would I hold liable? Some would say the friend, or ultimately the cracker, but a closer look reveals the true culprit: GoDaddy, for not making reasonable changes to my account, and forcing me to go to a potentially insecure third party in the first place.

To apply this situation to the Wesley Snipes case, GoDaddy represents the accountants, my hypothetical friend represents Wesley Snipes, the cracker represents the IRS, and I represent the universe, randomly doling out self-modifications as I see fit. Consider this, and the answer to the Snipes’ case will become clear. Speaking of, while writing the first draft of this article, Windows abruptly closed for no discernible reason, and I lost the article. What does GoDaddy know?

Epilogue: When I finally canceled godaddy, they told me I had to do it online. I mentioned my situation, why I canceled, and they said, “Oh, well we can get someone to help you with that.” They wouldn’t go out of their way to help me modify my account when I needed, but they would go out of their way to help me cancel it. To me, this smacks of bad management. Shame on them!