Hosts & Hostees: You both have responsibilities.

This is the entry I’m supposed to apologize in for not blogging in so long whether I actually have any sincere feelings as far as not blogging on this domain in so long goes. I’m also probably supposed to explain the reason it was, for quite some time, merely a blank page. That’s because the themes directory was no where to be found by WordPress or myself at the time. That’s because people with zero lives and dignity felt they had some necessity to go and pull some ignorant, disrespectful and immature act hack my website. An account on the server was hacked, thus creating some kind of bridge that allowed other websites to be hacked. That’s why you should definitely keep whatever scripts you use on your site up to date. It wasn’t something I did; I did my part in keeping my stuff up to date. Personally, I think that is a responsibility all hostees need to have. Any hostee that cannot be bothered to simply keep their scripts up to date and to not use outdated scripts on a server they do not own personally does not deserve the privilege to be hosted.

However, hosts have responsibilities as well.

If you host someone, and you have personal details of theirs such as (but not limited to) their real name, their email address(es), their age and their IP address(es), releasing such information to anyone other than the person who is above you hosting-wise (i.e. your host, the company who takes care of your server, a governmental authority person, etc.) is highly unprofessional, something that should never be ignored, something that your hostees should look deeply into, and so much more. I could go on with this list. That’s why you NEED a privacy policy. Freely hosted or not, a host has no right to release such information publicly for a dispute amongst those in whatever community/group/clique/etc. it may be just to prove a point and be able to continue on with their hosting website as if they truly think AND believe that what they did was okay.

It’s not okay.

As a hostee, your host trusts you to not put anything harmful on the server, to follow the terms given and to feel like you’re part of a family.

As a host, your hostees trust you to respect them and not invade their privacy. They trust you, and if you think it’s okay to release private details about them, you deserve to lose all of their trust.

Unfortunately, I feel like I’m the only person who sees that such things are a problem. I’m done hiding; I’m pointing them out because I feel like it’s something that really needs to be said. This post is long overdue.

Sorry, but comments are closed on this post.

Comments on this post

Stephanie’s gravatar

If a host, especially a company, gets a subpoena from a court, then the host absolutely must turn over the information requested in the subpoena; no questions asked. The law is not always fair, or right, but the host would get thrown in jail for not following the subpoena. That’s the only exception I can think of in your list. Everything else you say is correct, and I’m surprised that it’s not intuitive to most people.

Did you get hacked because your host gave your information to someone else? (If your host got hacked, then it’s probably their fault for not keeping their hosting software up to date.)

Liz’s gravatar

To answer the last question, no. A hostee on the server had outdated scripts, WordPress being one of them. It wasn’t my host.

I understand that’s the exception; I couldn’t think of the word, so I put “government” in their hoping it would adequate. However, I’m really referring to the drama that happened on Twitter between one blogger and another group of people. It should not have been handled the way it was.