Why would someone halfway across the world legitimately purchase a domain that I let go, but then steal my Html code and graphics? Wierd!
Let me explain. More than a decade ago, when the web was pretty new and I was full of crazy, mostly half-baked, web ideas, I built an online reminder service. It started out as an oil change reminder service and I actually sold the idea (for what I considered a lucrative price) to Shell and Texaco. Then I expanded its functionality to generate any kind of user-configurable reminder and established the domain ReminderWeb.com to host the service.
|ReminderWeb.com home page|
Alas, I was not able to spend the time and money to promote the site, and only a couple hundred users signed up. By then, Outlook had reminders, and several other commercial reminder services popped up online including RemindMe.com. Even though it didn't really cost me much money at all, and only a few minutes a day to administer, I decided that I wouldn't renew ReminderWeb.com.
Recently, while working on updating this site's back end, I got to wondering if anyone had pounced on the ReminderWeb.com domain name. I was not at all surprised to see that someone had, indeed, purchased ReminderWeb.com. That's fine. I let it expire and someone else thought it was a good domain name.
But I was very surprised to see that my old code and graphics were still there under my old domain name! The folks who purchased ReminderWeb.com were using my html code and my graphics. And I do not consider that cool! They haven't even bothered to change the Html title from "Dave's Reminder Service". Fortunately, they were not able to steal my back-end code that drives the reminder database and service. I'm still trying to understand why someone would find the front-end worth stealing and keeping online, but not worth the effort of developing (or purchasing) the back-end.
It's easy to see who the culprits are by doing a WhoIs search on ReminderWeb.com. (I will not name them on this site until I consultant an attorney.)
Here's where it gets a little bit wierder. There are a couple of links toward the bottom of the page to external sites. But there are two links to the personal web pages of two individuals who are Indian artists (I have no idea how famous they are--but they are obviously unbelieveably cheap!). The links don't go to external sites, but link to pages hosted in folders underneath ReminderWeb.com.
|Shailendra Bhartti's Site underneath ReminderWeb.com|
|Uma Dogra's Site underneath ReminderWeb.com|
Now why would they do that? Doesn't it look kind of lame to have your personal web site hosted underneath somebody's old ripped-off web site? Maybe they have different standards over there--I don't know. My guess is that these two artists have no technical skills of their own. Or maybe they are actually being ripped off by the owners of ReminderWeb.com. Or maybe they are the silent partners in the ownership of the potentially-lucrative ReminderWeb.com? I'm just not sure, but it is very strange.
No, actually, it's kind of laughable. No, it's just sad. Well, not that sad, like the extreme poverty of many Indians or the saddness of religious terrorism they've experienced in that part of the world. It's sad, in a petty kind of way.
It's just sad enough for me to make a small sigh, consider it a compliment, then move on. Or maybe I should contact these people and raise holy hell?