– Less than a year to top host at is as I type this post being show cased as number 7 on’s so called top 10 list. Until this year I had never heard of, after all there are thousands of hosts I have never heard of. Earlier this month I was cleaning out a screen shot folder to get rid of the many files I will never use (never mind I should be focusing on packing for my move).Where I found a screen shot I took of a so called review site that show cased earlier. Never mind what should have caught my attention was a host I never heard of on the top 10 for After all I know all the hosts that find themselves on these kinds of lists. This so called review site thought it was cleaver posting spam on the Facebook page for this site, in hopes of milking it for traffic. Per usual I took a screen shot of the spam banned the person who posted it. At best this review site is worth a screen shot.

hostmetro spam

But a direct link would probable not be a good idea as their traffic score is no better than a newly bought domain. But they had me wondering who was, and why were they on the’s top 10 list? The question you may be asking is why even bother doing a post on Truth be told, this is more about and the big lie I caught them at. was picked by as a top host because?

Now before I go over the whole relationship between and I would like to make it clear what the connection is. like all of the hosts that appear on’s top 10 sites have an affiliate program.  Which pay out roughly in the $100 range per sale. With the exception of all of these hosts including have (commission Junction) affiliate programs as well as their own in house programs.

Once again I don’t have a problem with affiliate programs, even that of In short its just a form of advertising. In fact, I am an affiliate of many of the programs covered under At best I have an issue with the bulk of a customer’s payment going to an affiliate and not their service. Yet that does not make affiliate programs evil. The only reason hosting review sites like show case companies like is because of the high payout. has an affiliate program. has 2 affiliate programs. The first is directly through the payout is $65 per referral. The second one has far more appeal because a third party ( is involved and the payout is $100.  In addition goes further to say on

Our affiliate program offers $100 for each hosting account referral. There is no minimum hosting account purchase or term. If you can send more than 15 referrals each month we can increase your commission rate to reward you for being a high performing affiliate. We will also provide you with a dedicated affiliate representative to make sure all your needs are being met. ”

Normally most hosting affiliate programs offer a higher payout per amount of sales, but wants you to contact them to arrange a higher payout. Something I was not aware that had capability for negotiations. But as far as why a third party is a good thing in the case of an affiliate program, they get paid when the affiliate does. does not have FTC compliance in their affiliate agreement does not have a FTC compliance clause like many companies such as hosts with EIG (Endurance International Group). Several companies sent out FTC compliance emails in 2011 like this one:

The reason I bring up the affiliate program is to get a clear understanding of why would show case Which is they are in this to make money. Despite giving a editor’s choice award to (who happen to get 8/10 on user feedback with no customer feedback), they would not show case the host in their top 10. I have two theories behind that 1. The payout was not that high. 2. They gave an award to leech their traffic.

But is different from, as they have a high payout.

How old is hints at 3 – 5 years. Time for!!!

If you read what has to say about you would think the host was at least 5 years old:

HostMetro is an established, reliable web host based in Schaumburg, Illinois. The management and ownership team boasts a combined total of some 50 years in the website hosting industry; the support staff (all US-based) and server technicians have, on average, 5 years experience in web hosting support. This experience is a benefit to all customers – this is a company with deep roots and stability.

So in effect I think it is safe to say they have around 10 employees. . But to be honest, never out and out states that the age of There are other things to look at like Facebook, Twitter, and the Better Business Bureau to get a better grasp of how old might be.

According to the first tweet was on February 4, 2013. shows they joined on June 20, 2012. However they have no activity on their Facebook page.

Oddly they have 2,638 followers on Twitter (I am following them), and only 30 likes on Facebook.

According to the Better Business Bureau:

Business started 07/19/2012

BBB file started 12/28/2012

As I have stated many times before the BBB does not actually confirm the age of a company. The start date is something that the BBB asks, and they don’t bother to check any records to confirm this data. But I think based off everything I have seen that it is safe to say that was an honest answer. So as of today, is not even a year old. has reviews for all the way back to 2011.

So the BBB has a start date of July 2012, heck even has this for on March 2011 (a simple domain parking page). But when was the first customer review?

The first review was a negative one by someone calling themselves Robert, on May 10, 2011.  However I don’t believe there was a Robert. Nor do I believe most of if any of those reviews existed before last month.

So how is it that has reviews (62 to be exact) all the way back to May 10, 2011?

Not to mention has no history of any of those reviews prior to this month.

But there is another host on added not too long ago – has been around for a while, a lot longer than January 15, 2013 they had a total of 6 reviews from July 29, 2011 to September 16, 2011

Then back in March 2013 they somehow managed to go from 6 to 46 reviews and miraculously is 7th host on the top 10 list at Not to mention the reviews change, as the earliest they had any reviews was August 4, 2011. It appears the first 2 negative reviews were deleted. Plus where there were no reviews after September 16, 2011 on January 15, 2015 there were now 42 reviews that had been added in.

I think it is safe to say most if not all of the reviews at are fake.

But here is the weird part.,,,,, and don’t have any reviews after early April 2012. Over a year and 6 out 10 major hosting companies don’t have any reviews. That is unheard of for my site and I get less traffic than The only site I have no covered is and I even get positive and negatives on this host. So should be drowning in reviews from these companies both good and bad.

Somewhere after April 25, 2013 decided to add to their system along with the fake reviews. as I said before is in this to make money, and if they have to throw ethics out the door to do it, well fabricating fake reviews for and is a small price to pay when the truth does not matter. an award winning host

Now this might have been the end of the post, and I would not bother going any further with Yet like some hosts they decided to show case so called awards that had some pretty noticeable flaws. Either did not bother to validate the awards they received, or they hoped people would just be impressed by the sheer volume of awards. Looking through the awards I found the following problems:

  • No significant traffic (which was the bulk of the sites)
  • Don’t have links to proof of the award
  • Incomplete sites that were offering awards
  • No customer reviews
  • Certification or registered with a company, not an award
  • Non-active award site
  • 4 award sites are owned by the same group, and feature as number 1
  • An award from 2003, despite a business start date from 2012

What is perceived as an award by would be for starters: (award 2), did not start monitoring uptime for until May 2013. June 5, 2013 is when they supposable agreed to’s code of ethics. Never mind this is what WHS equate as ethics:

IMG_0469 IMG_0471 (Award 12) does nothing more than add to their system to give an “attendance” award.  There is no direct link to’s page on, where there are no customer reviews. (Awards (15 and 20) provided certification, not awards. (award 16) – award graphic simply says verified firm and “learned from reviews” (no idea what that means) they did not have any reviews until June 19 where they got 2, and another one on June 20, 2013.

While most of the awards for are vague some are nonexistent these awards stick out.,,, and (awards (5 ,8, 14, 17.21, and 23) are all owned by the same individual / group. Plus may have fake reviews, and like lies about the age of the company:

HostMetro has quietly and confidently been providing some of the best web hosting services in the industry since 2003.

Tevin — October 25, 2012 “HostMetro has quietly and confidently been providing some of the best web hosting services in the industry since 2003.

But never mind that, despite being owned by the same person/group their top 10 lists are not in the same order with each site, there is one host that is number 1. Which begs the questions does own these fake top 10 review sites? - Domain Dossier - owner and registrar information, whois and DNS records - Domain Dossier - owner and registrar information, whois and DNS records (1) - Domain Dossier - owner and registrar information, whois and DNS records (2) - Domain Dossier - owner and registrar information, whois and DNS records (award 19) – Looking at this domain you would expect to find at least 10 hosts listed, but there is only one host – I would not be surprised if this is owned by someone with in The domain creation date was December 18, 2012. (Award 25) is not actually an active website and has a launch page.

The last award (26) which I think is for has no link, and is an award for 2003 which is impossible considering was not around back then. proves that had nothing more than a coming soon page back in 2003: is another host that I will be following, and proof that is not to be trusted as unbiased review site. – Hypocrite – whinny disclaimer / excuses Part 3 on my first inspection did not have a disclaimer. But on second review I see this at the bottom of a lengthy fact less sales spill:

Disclaimer: If one of our suggested hosts has an affiliate program, great, we join it, and the funds are used to support the costs of maintaining this site. If not, oh well, good is good, and they still get our suggestion. A few splog owners have contacted us, crying that we’re hypocrites by having some links that earn small affiliate payments ($10-15 average), yet deriding their spammy sites for doing the same. Sorry, but it’s NOT the same — it’s not even close. Our list is based on quality of hosts, not their payouts. If this list was based on payouts alone, it would recommend high-paying ($100+) lousy operations like GodaddyIXWebHosting or Bluehost. Notice that our #1 suggestion, EuroVPS, had no affiliate program for years. March 19, 2013 Host recommendations

I am not calling the owner of a hypocrite for having affiliate links. As for EuroVPS having an affiliate program, good for them. But is implying that because did not have an affiliate program that somehow it’s bad for a host to start out with one?’s disclaimer implies that affiliate program are some how wrong,

I am calling the owner a hypocrite for not providing any data, just stereotypes. After all claims their rankings are based off of server/network performance. That means should have at least data for one of the many measures that determine if a host is good or not. Another detail that would go father is/are domain(s) that were hosted with companies that claims to have used.  Which would allow anyone to see if that more than a single web page was put up, or a full working site(s). Data that is far more valuable than just having the uptime of the hosting companies site’s server ( For those not aware an established host is not going to keep their main site on the same server as their customers). The data would be even better if backed by a third party like Pingdom. Instead like all so called review sites wants you to take their word for it. Never mind there are no list of domains hosted currently with the recommended hosts (not even going to start with domains no longer hosted with the recommended), with a detailed history.  That was after all one of the criteria, detailed reviews. Instead can’t even offer a up time % for any of the hosts they recommends servers. is doing the same concept that every review site they want you to avoid does. It would be a cleaver (though dishonest) trick if the fake hosting review industry had not already thought about that one. one of the oldest of fake review sites says “Unlike some dubious “top  10 hosting sites” that promote web hosts based on affiliate commissions, our fair our fair and honest ranking system helps visitors find the real top web hosting companies.”.  Instead (not a blog) had hosts bid on the top 25 positions (the only affiliate program they ever appeared to use was The same owner of also owns other sites that does exactly what Michael Low preaches against on on sites like (which runs off affiliate commisions, with so called top 10 format, and no not a blog).

Is the same as all the other so called hosting review sites?

In short yes. What fails to do at the very first in what is a very long post is disclose up front they earn money if you sign up with one of the hosts they recommend. Many so called review sites claim their competitors are being dishonest. Nothing more than a slight of hand trick. Take the obvious and use it for distraction. Instead of providing data like many so called review site, provides stereotypes as a distraction from the lack of facts.The disclaimer reads like one written with a kid caught with his hands in the cookie jar.

the funds are used to support the costs of maintaining this site

I can say the same, what brings in does not cover the costs of running it.  Yet I would be lying if I said I would not like it to make insane profits. Also unlike I disclose that I make a commission up front whenever I have recommend a product (example Kindle Fire). Yet some how Digitalfaqcom, whom I seen nothing declaring they were a non-profit organization, though they take donations seems uncomfortable with making buck.

If had disclosed up front their relationship with the hosts lists, I doubt I would have read any further. Making a commission off a recommendation is not evil. But instead to distract from what they are doing they bring up the behavior of other so called hosting review sites.  Yet that alone was not enough from my attention deficit order from distracting me.   I was only further inspired when they broke from what was a very good recommendation “A bad host promises ridiculous limits — or no limits at all! Unlimited! Yeehaw!” . This only drove me to want to address the inaccuracies in their claims. Clearly getting $25 – $150 + (by plus I mean bonuses when you sign up a certain number) per sign up was hard for to resist.’s Top Hosts 2013

As I mentioned in my last post, I notices affiliate links the moment I started clicking on hosts listed. Yet that was not my first clue that they were part of a affiliate program. It was the fact that had coupons. After the addition of unlimited hosts I decided to see who had an affiliate program and how much they paid out. Plus on average what is the payout? Was it really as little as $16? I visited every site and found the least each host had was an affiliate login area.  Breakdown is Affiliate page / payout. Those with (NEW) were added after I started, not to imply that they are a new host.’s Best Web Hosts / Overall Hosts

  1. 20 Euro = $26
  2. $25
  3. $65 – $110 (based off number of sales)
  4. $65 (NEW)
  5. $40 – $100 (based off number of sales)
  6.  $15 – $25
  7. $70 – $135 (based off number of sales)
  8. 25% Up to $159.87 based off step 1 of shopping cart on highest plan
  9. $30

Removed from the list is: 200% of monthly price up to $200

No explanation to the retraction by’s Best Unlimited Hosts

  1. $25 – $100 (based off number of sales)
  2. $65 – $110 (based off number of sales)
  3. $70 – $135 (based off number of sales)
  4. – $50 – $125, + bonus at sale 10 of $100, Bonus at Sale 25, $500. (NEW)
  5. $50 – $100 (based off number of sales)
  6. 50% Up to $215.10 based off highest item found on product page
  7. $50
  8.  $50 – $150 (based off number of monthly sales).’s Best Reseller hosts

  1.  $15 – $25
  2. $40 – $150
  3. 15% – highest possible is $15 based off order=form.
  4. $25 – $100 (based off number of sales) (new to list)
  5. – $25 – $75 (NEW)
  6. $40 – $100 (based off number of sales) (new to list)
  7. $25
  8. 20 Euro = $26
  9. (labeled Reseller Zoom)  $65 (NEW)
  10. $65 – $110 (based off number of sales)
  11. no clear info, but affiliate login area present’s Best VPS Hosts

  1. 20 Euro = $26
  2.  100% – $709.95 based off highest item in shopping cart
  3. Mediatemple
  4. One time commission $60 – $5000 or 5% reoccurring monthly
  5. $40 – $100 (based off number of sales)
  6. – Tier 1 ( 0- 9 sales monthly (75% of first bill), Tier 2 (10 – 19 sales monthly) 100% of first bill, Tier 3 (20 + sales monthly). (NEW)
  7. $65 – $110 (based off number of sales) 125% of first bill.
  8. $25
  9. 75% probable $3985.65 based off of highest item
  10. – part of $65  (NEW)
  11. Double the monthly amount, possible $690 based off order page
  12. not program found, however WHMCS present and has affiliate capabilities. Domain creation April 26, 2010. (NEW)
  13., no information available however noticeable affiliate login area from the Client area (NEW)

Two new additions are not 5 years old (as recommends) based off domain creation. – Domain Creation October 19, 2011 – Domain creation April 26, 2010 (though the design looks like it’s over a decade old).

Other than (which seems like a rip-off of hostgator) and every host has a clear and present affiliate program. Despite the lack of information for an affiliate program for there is a login area for affiliates, and has WHMCS which has affiliate capabilities. An average is hard to determine without spending more time taking into account of hosts that pay base on percentage,   $16 does not appear the average, but many of these companies . Once again no data to validate how each host earned a recommendation.

Its worth noting that only one host offers does not offer payments in the U.S. dollar ($), and that is the host that has gone on the record for hosting with Which pays more than $16 per signup.

Either the owner of doesn’t understand that not all hosting review sites work the same, or is neglecting to leave it out.

After all’s disclaimer seems to insist that the FCC is going after blogs(As if all review sites were blogs). That the problem was all about affiliate commissions, yet they signed up for affiliate programs if they were there. That assumption alone tells you that is not a source for facts.

My last post will cover what they don’t understand about review sites. – Hypocrite – Claims of what makes a great host Part 2’s Top hosts of 2013 post claims to have the magic formula to spot a bad host. Never mind they have their own recommendations on who to host with.  But do the hosts recommends stack up against their advice? Not to mention is the advice valid.

There is a site that has their own advice; it’s a review site that does not always focus on who gives the highest payout. Instead this is one of the few “blog” review sites out there that claims the FTC is after.

I find those sites vulgar and unethical. Affiliate-driven lists are a cancer on the Internet, and to communication in general. In fact, that’s why the FTC has been more involved in blogging since 2009, to combat this nuisance.

An inaccurate statement, designed to draw your attention away from’s lack of data on the hosts they recommend. But this post is not the only one I have found that does not deal in facts. I’ll cover that in my last post about’s attempt at distraction, or what they claim makes a great host.

Most review sites I have encountered are not blogs.  But is one of the few exceptions. Sure they have their own top list of hosts. Yes all of the top hosts featured on the list are high payouts. But their approach is not to just focus on the high payouts, but any payout even if it’s a few bucks. The company focuses on being on the top of search engines for a specific kind of search. This is where the blog comes into play, with a theme of “(Hostname) sucks)”.  But seldom do the hosts that show up there actually suck (though that seems to change based on affiliate commissions or their free hosting is shut off). They used to be pretty good at being in the top of that particular search engine result but lately their traffic has been taking a dive. got one of their “reviews”, which was also without fact. Not to mention their site failed to mention that this site was brand new. My counter posts earned me the title of Benjamin the Grumpy blogger because I had addressed why a brand spanking new company had no negative reviews.

Sure I was accused of not liking new hosts, but I am more hurt by the fact that this site was not referenced (ok not really). The fact that had no negative reviews  (or any reviews) worked perfectly into’s formula. Which is to be on the first page, and better yet first result for when every you searched for “(hostname) sucks”, and than claim that the company has few negative reviews, or few valid negative reviews therefore the hosting company which they happen to be an affiliate for does not suck. Going through the searches myself I often found more than the claimed “few” results. It does not take a lot for them to make a page and spin the concept of less “sucks” results for a host = “good”, “so no need to look further click now, oh and we have coupons”. didn’t follow FTC compliance until I brought it up with Endurance International Group. But they are a blog, yet they don’t always go for the highest payout. But I will get into that with my last post.

Just like, they want you to see a lengthy post and than buy from one of the hosts on the list. But do any of these points have merit and/or do all the hosts live up to these standards?’s Points: Professional skills./ Wisdom only by age

The first two seem to be a knock against the young. Despite all of my years doing business online I have yet to come to a point where I suspected the person on the other side was a child. Though this may be an interesting point should manages to find itself on the list. I have to ask is there anyone that knows the exact age of the person they are communicating with? There are times I don’t even know the gender on the other end.   Decades of good living have people checking my id and doing a double take whenever I buy over the counter allergy drugs. I hope that they are not just flattering me and that I do look more than a decade younger than I am.  Talking to your host generally involves dealing with them by phone, ticket, chat system, email, possible a forum, and maybe if you really like them their social media. You generally do not get to see how old the person is on the other side. While age is not apparent in communications, professionalism and skill are.

I got started in webhosting at a young age, and my current age is one of those facts I don’t care to share as its bad enough by this point I am reminded of my own mortality. My start came about from someone who had found my design work online he had helped me to get more clients and eventually to start 4 hosting companies. He was about 30. However it would be our other business associates that would be the road blocks to success.

If you read my blog earlier you will know about two of my business partners. The first of which was a man (age 52) who had 5 years of technical experience, 20 years’ experience of running his own company. We will call him Bob.  However at the greatest hour Bob freaked out. In a mere week we had over 5000 clients.  My first business partner and I were ecstatic, especially after months of work and spending our own finances it appeared we were near reaping the fruit of our labors. Not to mention this was miles beyond our expectations. For which everyone but Bob was working on how to adapt. Instead of remaining calm and hiring more people and buying more servers, Bob decided to lock us out. It was sheer lunacy. Talks of hiring more people and buying more equipment despite growing profits had alarmed him.  He had never had an influx of customers on this scale before. The first Business partner held control of the domain. Two weeks after the site launched, it died.  To this day my first business partner owns the domain, it’s a sad reminder of what might have been.

My first business partner and I went on to form 4 more hosting companies after that, to this day they are still around. Years later after launched a successful company he sent me an email wondering if we had a place for him. I blocked his email.

Due to a non-disclosure agreement I can’t discuss names. But I am not restrained from telling about our second business partner/CTO and how he almost killed our second attempt at a hosting company. We will call him Bruce. Bruce was 48, (64 now) more than double my age. He had 4 years of experience of running his own private hosting company and despite his failures continues to run it to this day. He also had 7 years of hosting tech experience. On top of that he had 7 years of software development experience. Despite all those years of experience, Bruce did not have the wisdom for success. Our CEO and I (CFO) had no idea how bad he was, because he appeared to be doing his part until a month after the launch. Between poor choices of script installment, bullheaded behavior towards hiring more techs despite a huge influx of customers, and apathy when it came to any form of a business meeting it was clear he was not someone you wanted in your company. Not to mention if he had been left unchecked he would have been cramming customers like sardines.

The nail in the partnership was when Bruce claimed to be taking time off for a funeral. Funny thing is his mom sent pictures of him para-sailing to the CEO’s mother

Putting that aside there are a lot of teenagers out there that have contributed to the internet, so before you go knocking them make sure you are not using any of their creations. Age does not equal wisdom. If anything has alienated a demographic.’s Point: Ownership and investment

In short the claim is ownership equals a reason to stick around. This may be true for many hosts, however there is no true data available to make a rational grounds for holding against a host not owning their own data center or servers. After all uses (formerly I have no idea if they lease or own the servers. Note: (a host that offers unlimited hosting) is a sponsor of

But while we are the subject of companies like that use’s data centers; the following hosts that appear on’s top hosting list are also with

  • (theplanet network info)

Furthermore the following hosts that do not appear to have their own data centers:

  • – Delaware U.S. owner, server in Argentina
  • – (belongs to based off whois info) Delaware U.S. Owner, server in Buenos Aires
  • – private network info
  • – private network info
  • – servers

I can’t say with 100% certainty that they don’t own their own data centers. Nor would I know if they are not if they own their own servers.

Needless to say there is one unifying factor that all hosts find a reason to stick around rather they own their servers and data centers, and that is reoccurring income.

On a side note, is a sponsor of

46bbf7b1-d2af-4789-af58-e5b349c9160e’s Point: Earned reputation

This is where I call bull shit, and yes I used a colorful metaphor. Reviews even with great detail may not tell the whole story. Just as all so called review sites may not be in it for large payouts.

One thing that I personally kills a review no matter how detailed as I have previously mentioned sif a domain is missing from the hosting review it is worthless. I see no data with this list of stereotypes that indicates any sites that are hosted with these “approved hosts” Domains give you a chance to look at the whois to see how old the site is and if they actually are hosted with whom they claim to be hosted with to see how long they have been hosted with the company they claim to be with. Not to mention actually looking at the site gives you some back ground into what kind of customer they may be. A just bought domain name, with a single page website can also make a review worthless. Another part to the domain is if the Whois info tells you that the hosting company owns the domain in the review (something I have caught some hosts doing).

Just as positive reviews are not an end all indicator of service; the same can be said of negative reviews. Happy customers are far less likely to write a review than an unhappy customer when it comes to hosting. A webhost is not going to get the same fandom like say Star Wars. Not to mention who is to say if detailed reviews are not being written by a host, and detailed negative reviews by competitors or customers that no one can please. Over the last few years I have found, where surprisingly you can pay people to buy a cheap kindle book and give it 1 or more positive reviews. At the same time there are those that offer to buy your competitors book and write negative reviews.  For that matter the amount of likes on Facebook, followers on twitter, or other social media that can be bought as well.  I have seen 12,000 likes on Facebook for as little as $5. There are companies out there that specialize in nothing more than providing a false start, many calling themselves Reputation experts/SEO experts.

Speaking of companies that deal in providing reputation some of the companies on’s recommendation list I have caught dealing with one of the worst hosting review sites out there,

These hosts paid not in affiliate commissions, but bid against one another for positions in a top 25 host list on has no links to any solid reviews.’s Point: Successful longevity

As a general rule most businesses are likely to fail in the first 5 years, however that does not mean that a company will stand the test of time after 5 years. In my time hosting has greatly evolved. Social Media, Unlimited, Cloud and VPS hosting was not even a concept when I first started. FrontPage used to be something we highlighted to bring customers in.  Making your site compatible for a phone would have been a laughable concept. But here we are.

What seems to neglect here is that a new company may be eager to bring in new customers. They have more at stake than an established company with a steady source of renewals. So ruling a company out because they are less than 5 years old does not make a lot of sense. At the same time reoccurring income is a great motivator for any company to keep going, and eventually get their own data center and servers. I for one was guilty of loving the reoccurring customers more than new customers.  Remarkable there are hosts out there that manage to scrape by on 10 year old concepts and terrible service. Like has another area they failed to disclose, and that is not every host on their list is 5 years +. One method I have to find out how old a site is by reviewing whois info. My preferred site is:

I have found many companies in the past that will try to claim they are a certain age. Like a company called They claimed that they started in November 2006, despite their domain being registered in 2010.

Based off the whois info I can often find out how old a company might be. There have been a few sites like that has removed the start dates from their sites because I have pointed out their creation date was after their “start date”.

The following sites based off whois info did not exist 5 years ago.

  • – created August 26, 2010
  • – created August 9, 2009


However domain creation dates do not always equal start date. I have 2000 + domains that clearly did not start when I got them, at best they have ppc page.  Sites may start weeks, months, even years after the domain’s creation. Which is where another site called comes in handy. It gives you snap shots of how a site looked in the past all the way back to 1996. Using this site I found a few interesting points about the following sites.

  • Froghost.comDomain creation January 6, 2004.’s Facebook page says they were founded in 2009, they joined Facebook January 2011, first post was March 12, 2011. Their first tweet was on March 11, 2011. However archive,org shows a standard domain registration page launch page till February 18, 2010.
  •, while created in August 9, 2009, does not appear to have an actually hosting page till August 22, 2010.
  • – Domain creation July 10, 2001, shows a coming soon page till December 8, 2008. and could be classified as aged domains. Domains that are sometimes purchased for the sake of selling later. But are prized for having long creation date behind them. I have about 2000 domains that I have bought over the last 15 years. All of which I had planned to start something with. About 20 of them are hosting domains, all of which are 10 years or older.  Currently I am cleaning house and I put sites up for sale to bring in new design customers. You would be surprised that one of the biggest selling factors is the age of a domain. Aged domains are the reason why is a very important tool when reviewing a host or any site claiming to have years of experiences, regardless if someone recommends it or not.’s Point: – Knowing the limits

When I first looked at this section was clearly anti-unlimited hosting. But now clearly they are not immune to the huge payout to companies like site5, Arivixe, Inmotion, and who I have found buying top spots with (or what likes to call ppc advertising), Details about the payouts for these companies and their affiliate programs in the next post.

Unlimited resource accounts are not for the serious site owner.’s Point: Transparency

If you think this is the point where you don’t have to read the TOS because read it for you, think again. I cannot stress enough that you should read the terms of service with any company.  What is really missing here is what to look for in the terms of service.

Since I don’t have a lot of time I am going to deal with one company I know that operates like many hosts that considers the worst offenders. Which brings me to What was it said?

good host has easy-to-understand policies, rules and agreements.

A bad host tries to hide “gotchas” in their often-buried documents, which are written in butchered “legalese” English, and hide limits such as SQL connections, inodes, email I/O, and file usage that turn so-called “unlimited” accounts into highly limited near-worthless web accounts. Many times, these documents are buried on their site, and thrown in the face of customers as the basis by which to charge them fees or outright deny service or tech support.

For starters has 12 web pages in regards to terms of use. That alone makes it harder to understand the company’s policy as the SiteGround Terms of Service web page is lengthy on it’s own (and opens up in a pop up window). This web page is 21 pages long, 15,185 words. The word refund appears 35 times over 11 different sections.

In addition this is what they consider unlimited space for “Unlimited web Space applies to your use of web pages only (html, php, etc.). All other files are considered as premium storage for which our Fair Use policy shall apply.. The phrase “fair use” appears which translates to unspecified limits. :”Fair use” appears 20 times in 4 sections. Which translates to when you become no longer profitable they can give you the boot.’s Point: Upgrade paths

One of the big problems with hosts like many that appear in so called hosting review sites is they are very limited in their offerings. There is no way Endurance International Group (EIG) will allow you to host something on the scale of or with one of their unlimited plans. Never mind that’s the impression they want you to have as you look over their nutritional mock up on where it uses words like “oodle” and “free”. The sad truth is there are many out there that don’t even know that EIG has 40 + hosts, and leaving one in angst they may go to another expecting better service (never mind this EIG host may be cheaper than the last one). Considering how companies like EIG operate, you may have picked their most expensive host, but may very well be subjected to the same restraints/service as their cheapest hosting plan. The hidden limit at which they kick you off or put a bottleneck on your account is determined by profit. All hosting is about profit (well maybe except when it comes to charities). That is not to say making money is bad, but there is a problem when you don’t know how far you can expand. But if a host tells you they are not concerned about profit, I tell you don’t walk away, run.

With companies like I know if I exceed my borders I get billed for it. Which to me seems better than wondering at what point I get the boot. I have design deadlines to worry about not rather my site will be up or not. No sorry that’s not a recommendation, as I myself have not prepared or kept enough data to make that recommendation. So no affiliate links, perhaps the stray Rackspace Google ad.

In short’s recommendations fall short of what makes a great host

I don’t fault any one for recommending a host, and getting paid to do it.  On other sites that’s how I make money. Making money is not evil, nor the root of all evil. The method used to make money is a different story. uses sterotypes. Teenagers are bad, so they would not know how to operate a server and are dumb. In which case I ask, what hosting companies are employing teenagers, or better yet kids? Hosts that own their data center and servers ” For them, failing is not an option.”.  Yet that did not stop companies like Enron and Hostess.  Not to mention Blockbuster is just around the corner, seriously they are shutting down all over where I live, being replaced by competitor’s vending machines. Than your supposed to go by reputation, yet some of these companies have bought and paid for it, and some even build their own review sites like

In the end offers nothing but hearsay and stereotypes with hosts that fall at the standards that were set. has done nothing to prove the hosts that they recommend are worthy of your patronage, just provide a distraction and affiliate links. – Hypocrite doing what other Hosting review sites do Part 1 finds its way here because of an email I got from someone that did not know better but thought was a great resource. The person who emailed me thought I might want to reference as an unbiased source.  The page on I am referred to claims to be against “affiliate splogs (spam blogs/sites)”.  Going further to claim “These splogger sites simply list the companies that pay the best commissions, and the top site is always the one with the highest payout.“. Now to add to the interest adds their own top lists. No surprise but I don’t see a company that does not offer an affiliate program. Which I notice while I am clicking on those hosts I am getting affiliate cookies.

Once again (because apparently a few hundred times may still not be enough), I am not against making money or affiliate programs. But I am against what is attempting to do.

I have often been called a hypocrite because I have ads on this site. I am not sure how me having ads (which can often not be about webhosting), makes me the same as someone claiming hosts on a list are the best, giving out “awards”, or unverified reviews all for the sake of a payout. Also the payout when it comes to reviews sites is not always focused on high payments. Some companies like,, and have ways of profiting off the really low. was promoting a host that pays out less than $5 per sign up (

I don’t endorse the ads on this site (i.e. making false claims about some company being too good to be true). is engaging in the very hypocrisy that I have been often accused of. While I on the other hand don’t mind anyone being suspicious of me having personal agenda, so long as you realize that it’s very possible that the sites I am trying to warn you about may have their own agenda as well. If you’re not open to exploring the possibilities of what I am trying to disclose read no further

I honestly would not have a problem with doing their own recommended hosts if they actually validated their recommendations with facts, not to mention disclosure upfront that they make money if you sign up with a host they recommend. Instead when I first reviewed it there was no disclaimer, now there is one that is at the very bottom of their long winded fact less “trust me just buy from these guys”. I suspect has been called out by others that saw “hostname here”/affiliate/(affiliate id) when their browser was redirecting to one of the’s recommended hosts.

Never mind how much tout they have been with, their domain whois information suggests last change something back in November 14, 2012. Plus since loves so much why does and other companies get a far bigger banner. Bigger banner means a better chance of the ad being clicked on. I suspect from the ads I have been seeing they are all affiliate programs.

Over the next couple of days I will be posting a dissection of what is doing and how they are like most of the hosting review sites out there. is offline, and perhaps out of business appeared on this site because they were on’s so called top 25 list. But another detail that interested me back when I did my review about this company was everything indicated that they had just started up. Between just starting to track their uptime to their alexa score. Some how just by starting up they had won the right to be called a top 25 host. However the nature of is not that of an unbiased customer advocacy group, but a pay to play Business model.

In short they paid to be called a top host. They did not earn the title. Where is the proof you might ask? How do I know that is hoax?

This post explains a little of what I found over a year of reviewing so called top 25 hosts:

So why a renewed interest in

Last week someone posted a comment on my blog indicating that was offline. According to the Whois the domain expired back in July, and based off the update I think it is safe to say went offline on August 7, 2012.

As the whois indicats that there was update on August 7, 2012 to’s whois information.

At first said that they would update the’s uptime when they came back up.

After 5 days stop tracking the down time for

I wanted to wait a few days to see if would come back up, as this is not the first host I have been told was offline and out of business. But none of those had an expired domain and soon were up after a few hours or even a few days.

I realize is the first host out of the some 60 I reviewed on to go offline. One host does not equal a disaster but this is not the first host with problems that were called a top host. But it is one in many that form a pattern in hosts that were not vetted to be a top host. was defiantly not a time tested solution at less than a month online there was no way of telling how reliable they would be.

Yesterday I contacted one of the two customers that left a review at I was unable to reach the other as they have no contact details on the Whois info, and their site is offline. The customer I was able to contact said their site was still hosted with That he was not aware that was offline. He also said over all he was happy over all with the service. Both accounts appear to have been on the same network as they both share dns with the same domain name. yet slightly different dns. Which means the other customer did not pay or continue their hosting, or let the server that account was on lapse.

I have contacted the original the person who had originally contacted me from but I do not believe he will respond. As always and any host are always allowed to post comments on post relevant to their company. I will not delete or modify comments even if requested so please think before you post.

Personally I do not think that will be back online. – A Rigged Contest

I been meaning to for sometime now write up a post to high light why I write reviews about hosts that appear on’s top 25 list.  Mostly because I have hosts that contact me after I do a post and tell me I had no right to do a review on them because I did not use their services.  For some reason they either don’t know that I know, or they don’t know themselves that the “advertising” they paid for actually is a bidding contest between other hosts.  The proof of why a host is a top host is not there.  Data that breaks down the numbers is absent, there are no facts to tell you why one host was better then another.   Some of the sites that are on there don’t have any reviews from customers.  A few don’t even have a 80% approval from their customers. wants the consumer  to take their word for it.   I want the consumer to kick the tires so to speak, as a little doubt is a good thing and protects you from a bad deal. While I have lost my original screen shots and email from when I first started the video that gave my site its initial boost of traffic, almost a year of looking at every host that appears on this so called top 25 list gives me the data to prove that the system was rigged.  Which at this time is 61 going to 64 hosts this month that appeared on at one point or another in my monthly reviews.  So if you are reading this, here is where my right to review any host that appears on  top 25.

How effective is your “advertising”, if is blocking people from coming to your site?

The point of advertising is to get as much exposure as possible right? If you had the choice of a billboard ad on a small town in the middle of no where or a 1 minute ad on some hugely popular reality show which do you choose?  It does not take any business guru to tell you which you want.    A few months after I started taking snap shots and doing a monthly posts on they started blocking my location.  Perhaps in part because I let them know what my provider was.   But it not just my location, its been other friends around the world and their communities because they started taking screen shots.  It seems to be triggered after as little as one inquiry.    Its also been people that have no connection to me at all.  Despite their blocking me more people are volunteering to take screen shots for me.  So even though they may block someone, someone else is getting through and getting me the screen shots I ask for.

But the real question is if they have nothing to hide, then why would they block anyone?  The answer to that is their own data shows why you should not choose many of the hosts that appear on their top 25 list.


Can you afford to pay a site that blocks people that may be looking for hosting?

I7net, the one host on’s top 25 that was not even online

I first found i7net on in June 2010, the problem was it was not even online.  Between June to November of 2010 the site appeared between the 21 – 25 spots.

June 2010 –

September 2010 –

October 2010 –

November 2010 –

Granted those are not the only posts I did on i7net.  But if you search you will find nothing.

By December 2010,’s Michel Low must have finale paid attention to my blog because I7net is missing from his data base, well more like deleted from the directory.  It seems almost like an attempt to sweep this mistake under the rug and hope that many people did not notice this mistake.  It may very well be over looked.  Its not like I have huge amounts of traffic coming in (though it increases with time), and truth be told I may be the only one that finds I7net fascinating.  Traffic is not that great for the topic i7net,  but this is my best argument for not using  I can not help but say that I7net was the dead canary no one bothered to look at while browsing for a host.  Though while i7net may no longer be in the data base I have screen shots showing that they were indeed there in the top 21 – 25, and that even knew about the down time. – the first host to admit the system is rigged

This year I made a host mad because I posted the owner’s emails stating  “I agree with you the webhostingstuff website is missleading where itsays “top 10..” when its not based on anything apart from there bid.”  I did this because even though he knew it was rigged he choose to go back to using it.

Later on I would have other hosts such as Corn husker tech that admitted to buying the advertising.  I also have another host that while not admitting on my blog he was paying for advertising has admitted to me privately in email while disclosing another review site that operates on “the pay to play concept”.   Granted my non-disclosure depends on the fact that I never find that host on another so called review site.  But if you choose to contact me via email I reserve the right to post your comments on my blog.

How about a host that wrote their own review? Like

Asides for being a customer of this host broke one of the rules:

If “positive” reviews have been removed from your company profile, here are some common reasons:

  • The original reviewer asked us to remove their review in writing.
  • Review was found to be inappropriate.
  • You posted your own fake positive reviews!

Also “WebHostingStuff takes a firm stance against web hosts that attempt to post fake positive reviews. Enforcement actions include termination of listing and blacklisting on our site.“.


Since September 1, 2010 I contacted Michael Low and he of coarse blocked me.  This review is still up.

Perhaps if this host had been smart enough to not include that site on their BBB record, I would never have found it.


You will find hosts out there that have had their positive reviews deleted, hosts that do not pay for the so called “advertising”.

Then there are companies that I have found online for three months or less on the top 25 list:,,, and come to mind

Before I go off into ramble here, I want to make it clear that I have no problem with new hosts.  Every company had to start some where.  There is also the chance that a new host could take the industry by storm, in this market thats always a possibility.  One company that comes to mind is which did just that, but unfortunately that was one host that got a false start and was even at one point on  Strangely enough they left the top 25 host list after I started the blog with other hosts that are owned by Endurance International Group ( and   This is about new hosts that were/are paying for “advertising” with  New hosts which at the time had zero reviews when they first appeared on  Would you not think customers would have some say in rather a host is good or not?  Also would you not think a host would have some time under its belt before being a top host?  Considering I recommend no less then 30 days guarantee (you will find me repeating that often). is the first time I found a host that is online less then a month

This was a host I found on the top 25 for November 17, 2010, if you look at their whois record you can see the site was up less then 30 days before getting the number 11th spot out of 25.


Its a host that offers a 7 day guarantee, which I will never recommend.   If a host offers less then 30 days, I suggest avoiding that host.


While their whois info says the domain was created July 2010, but indicates that they started keeping track of uptime 12/15/2010.

Despite having purchased the domain October 2010, the site does not appear to have gone live till February 2011


Another host that had been online less then 30 days, for that matter 16 days by the time I did my review on them.   Somehow they managed to beat out Siteground who was in the 20th spot, by being in the 13th spot.  Worst yet they don’t have a valid phone number.


Is that that all that is wrong with

The answer to that is no, there are so many more hosts that serve as an example to not trust this top 25 list.  But if you want proof  here are a  few more:

First I have to ask if this host was on the top 25, why was not on the top 25 list?  After all this is a Wild West Domains reseller which is owned by  Worst yet it appears this host is putting his customers domains in his name.


All I can say is read the reviews from customers on my post, and other review sites. and Its not hard to be on top, when you own your own fake hosting review site.

Both of which own their own so called review site where amazingly they are always the top host with their top 10 sites. owns owns

The first thing I found was that 5 out of the 9 reviews they show cased on their site were not even hosted with  Which can be explained by the fact that only a small area of the main page of the site is dedicated to hosting.  There is no direct link to a secure support area on the main page, you have to navigate around the site to find it.  This is a company that treats hosting as a secondary operation if even that, which can find out when you read what “out of hours” means.

customers using this service without the appropriate support agreement will be charged £125 per hour, pro-rata to a minimum billing period of 15 minutes if an urgent response is required before the beginning of the next working day.

While I may not know how much the pound is compared to the dollar at this time (though I know one pound is more then one dollar) 125 pounds that sound like a lot of money compared to what other hosts would charge, when most do not for 24 / 7 service.

……………. and the list goes on of hosts that at one time or another appeared on’s top 25 list

The / connection

But this is a site that claims to be against the top 10 list methodolgy:

Unlike some dubious “top 10 hosting sites”  that promote web hosts based on affiliate commissions, our fair and honest ranking system helps visitors find the real top web hosting companies.

So in short trust this site of mine not my other site? is one of those sites driven by affiliate commissions. Both and are owned by Michael Low.

Does delete negative feed back?

The answer to that is yes, and I will be pointing the proof in my April 2011 review of which host of the 25 had 2 negative reviews deleted driving its two out of five star rating to a three out of five star rating.  Which means I need to start copying feed back of customers which you will see starting this month with my monthly reviews of WHS.

Ask yourself, do you really want to do business with a site that fakes your rank?  Better yet do you want your company associated with the hosts that I have listed? is only the first of hosting review sites I plan, and I am already in the works of new methods of digging up the truth.

Do you still have to ask why I wrote a review about your hosting company because you appeared on webhostingstuff still?