View Poll Results: As a provider: What would you do? (Please read the post)

Voters
42. You may not vote on this poll
  • Follow the terms of our contract and deal with the public lashing?

    41 97.62%
  • Submit to their threats for the sake of avoiding negative publicity.

    1 2.38%
Results 1 to 28 of 28
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Dallas, Texas USA
    Posts
    71

    As a provider: What would you do if?

    Customer obtains service from you. Is provided a contract clearly outlining the rules of engagement and general do's and dont's of the entire agreement/relationship.

    Customer clearly and repeatedly violates the terms of the agreement. Despite... being asked several times to stop. You decide to terminate the agreement per the contract, which clearly outlines that violation of the agreement / termination of contract by provider states the customer will not be provided a refund.

    Customer demands refund and threatens to post libelous/slanderous statements publicly about us unless we ignore the terms of our agreement and agree to their demands.

    I would like some advice, if possible.

    Should we:

    A.) Follow the terms of our contract and deal with the public lashing.

    or

    B.) Submit to their threats for the sake of avoiding negative publicity.

    Please help us decide.
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  2. #2
    A)

    Why have a contract, if for the sake of one angry person posting on a few boards you will ignore it ?

    If he violated your contract, then no problem, I think most people would see that he had violated his contract with you and immediatley side with you.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    London
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    2,404
    dont worry about WHT - most people here are smart enough to see through it - and those few who are not (normally those making most noise) are not worth keeping around anyway
    Ditlev Bredahl. CEO,
    OnApp.com & SolusVM.com + Cloud.net & CDN.net

  4. #4
    Well Guys, I would certainly stand by your terms of service. We all have to agree to these in this biz and if someone is breaking them they become useless as a form of protection if some host/providers enforce them and some don't.

    So for what it worth stand by them. I am at this 7 years and tend not to take someone's sayso as always been true. If a new server customers comes to you then I would like to think he has done so base on more than one person's sayso.

    We all have to protect our customers and should never take one man's word for anything. On the other hand once a new customer does experience your level of support they will know for sure that he is so wrong. (bless him)

    I know that you guys would never let one of your customers down. I know this from experience. You are the most agreeable and friendly bunch of guys and gals I have ever had the pleasure to deal with. Oh and the fastest I Know!!!

    Keep the chin up lads, it will take more than one guy to bring you down.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Athens, Greece
    Posts
    1,528
    Definately, enforce your TOS - this is why TOS exists!

    And do not be afraid of bad publicity - I am pretty sure all those who will listen to both sides they will realise who is wrong and right.

  6. #6
    i would go for A)

    btw. I'm a customer of serversupportguys. i've been working with them for 3 months, they are very professional and fast reponses managing team. especially, aaron and lylon did great jobs. tickets replies are no more than 10 mins

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    190
    Go for A!

    Im a customer of SSG too 3-4 months now...very good service..no question!

  8. #8
    I would go for a). For all you know when he leaves your company and goes else where he might just decided to try and lash your company anyway, might as well get rid of him now.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    6,601
    They say there is no such thing as bad publicity and if you can show you are right it can't hurt you in anyway
    Russ Foster - Industry Curmudgeon

  10. #10
    I will follow up the contract. No matter what there will be always customers that will not follow up the contract no matter what, and will say bad things from your company. If you decide to now follow the contract terms, the quality of the services will be affected because, as a professional you guys aren’t following your own rules. (That is how people started to get corrupted). If someone breaks a contract you should put a fee on that and the customer will decide to stay or not to stay.

    I mean, if you trust in your services and the stuff that you do, then everything should be ok. Lyron let me tell you with all respect that I tell my customers that when they don’t even know how to setup a single domain on their control panel, they should not be doing web hosting.

    Some people hire server management companies and expect to have them 24/7 looking at their servers. What I see is that a server management company will help you in the event that something happens, and help you with some issues. After a good setup by any server management company, if you don’t touch your box, then there should not be a problem at all with the server. Problems arise when people hire a server management company to fix their mistakes because they are learning how to use Linux.

    I am a former SSG customer, and I have use Rack911.com (Steve) services and SSW services too, they are all good, and they will tell you that they do get complain like that.



    just my 2 cents...now im broke

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Houston, TX
    Posts
    86
    I say you should go with option A !
    you cant just ignore the TOS anytime when one of your customers break it, you might as well just remove the TOS in this case.
    You can simply go to forums where you advertise your service and post the issue infull with some proof of what you say that might help if some1 sees your post and then see that guy posting guys he will just ignore what he says.

  12. #12

    Thumbs up

    I voted wrong :p , but I would like to go with (A) though.

    I have worked with Lyron before, and I can vouch he is a very talented individual, and knows where he is going and what he is doing.

    Take care!
    Susy Reyes
    http://www.myvpshost.com - Your #1 VPS Solution

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    United Kingdom
    Posts
    37
    Hi,

    I've been in the hosting industry for around 4 years now. i've known Lyron most of this time. I've found him very reliable.

    It is important to know where you stand and if you don't stick with the rules and when this is brought to your notice then you know what is likely to happen and can't really complain about it.

    It certainly won't be appropriate to just ignore your contract. With some people they will just complain anyway whatever you do.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    New York, NY
    Posts
    1,241
    Quote Originally Posted by ServerSupportGuys
    ...libelous/slanderous statements
    Both libel and slander are illegal. With that being said, there really isn’t much that you can do – I highly doubt that you’d want to bring someone to court over something as small as a few negative comments being made publicly by an obviously disgruntled customer. When the disgruntled client makes his statements, simply defend yourself by pointing out that the client broke the legally binding TOS that he/she agreed to before becoming a client, and therefore they were not eligible for a refund.

    As a side note, it seems like just issuing a refund to the client in this situation might have been the best course of action. Unless you *provided service*, you aren’t losing *anything* by refunding the money and you would effectively avoid any potential problems.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    33
    If you let them get away with it they will think they have got the upper hand, like many people have stated terms are there to keep the contract running smoothly for both parties, I would no way entertain a customer who broke the terms of service otherwise you open the floodgates to this type of behaviour.
    We have used your company for a couple of months and they are the best going, and the most friendly to deal with.
    You do not have to take this from a customer.
    In my opinion GET RID NOW and as said above defend any negative reports with the true facts

  16. #16
    We have worked with Lyron and team several times in the past. They do good work and are honest and up-front about things. The people here at WHT like to read and follow for the drama, but in the end they are smart enough to know when you did your best or not. Based both on my experience working with you and your reputation overall in this industry, there is nothing more you can or should do except stand up for your own TOS and policy. Don't let someone attempt to sway you by threats.

    You were hired to do a job or provide a service. If the customer agrees to your TOS and policy, then their service will perform well. By violating the TOS and going against your advice, the customer caused trouble for your staff, services or his own server. Nonetheless, you can't do your job if the customer continues to do things which interrupt your attempts to "keep his server online" which is what you were hired to do. If you can't do your job right then he needs to find another provider.

    Anyone who uses threats like posting on a forum to get something is trouble and it is not worth the extra effort to hush him. It looks like you did what you could and posting here shows that you really thought hard about the next action to take. Most of the replies here have valid points and seem to agree that this customer is trouble and you should stick with your TOS and most WHT users will side with you for that.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    India
    Posts
    911
    Quote Originally Posted by a2b2
    They say there is no such thing as bad publicity and if you can show you are right it can't hurt you in anyway
    Very well said !!!
    Yep if you have TOS, stick to them... My vote goes with "A . Follow the terms of our contract and deal with the public lashing"...

    When you are not doing anything wrong... no need to be scared !!

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Melbourne, AU
    Posts
    1,392
    Like the others have said, enforce your TOS. I'm sure most providers have been threatened by unhappy clients that they'll post negative comments about them on forums if they don't receive a refund - I know it's happened to us in the past. You surely do not want those types of clients and you do not want to give into them otherwise you'll be refunding every unhappy client that threatens you.

    Good luck!
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  19. #19
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Amsterdam, NL
    Posts
    250
    You can't give into threats like that. Gotta stand your ground and try to put your side of the story across should the need arise.
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  20. #20
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Florida, USA
    Posts
    362
    ServerSupportGuys... If you give in to extortion this time then what next?

    What will you do when another individual demands a lower price, maybe even free "or else"?


    Good luck to you!
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    Reselling? Partner for profit instead!

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    1,899
    This is what a Service Agreement is made for. If your client violates the agreement stick behind the agreement and terminate it and do not give in to any extortion they attempt as they have no basis for doing so and are simply grasping at straws.

    A client going after you as well with no basis in this instance is not just violating their agreement with you but, may also be cause for legal action again the former client. I'd strongly suggest seeking legal counsel if they even hint towards any legal threats such as suing or the like.
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  22. #22
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    New York, USA
    Posts
    1

    Devils Advocate

    I hate to say it, but I'd choose a prorated B. For example, say a client has put up a 1 year contract from 01/01/06 until 12/31/06. And, say you cancel them on 4/1/06 because of something THEY did. Assuming they paid for the whole year upfront, most businesses (even those which say they will not refund all of the "purchase" price,) will refund the remaining balance.

    I'm sure that many people have gone into a place like Best Buy or Circuit City, returned something for which there was a restocking fee, and the manager (or whomever) says "ok - well, we won't charge you the restocking fee THIS time...")

    Now, granted, they have repeat customers, and typically, if someone goes with a support company (like yourself,) you don't (if the person left under bad terms, which, if you're terminating their agreement, I would assume they're persona non-grata.)

    Nevertheless, customer relations are a good thing. Plus, macchiavellian (sp?) contracts MAY NOT be supported by law.

    Still, I agree about the "not giving into threats" mentality, but being the type of company where people have that "we have a good rapport with them" type of mentality is NEVER a bad thing.

    Lastly, I wouldn't lose the "no refund" policy part from your contract. It's ALWAYS good to have that in there, EVEN IF it's not legally binding, or if you don't follow your own policy yourself.

    Just my $.02 - take it for what it's worth.

    PS: I have been using SSG for the past four months and LOVE them! Still, if someone worked me over, even if I had to recommend them, I wouldn't.

    Always remember your PR!!!

    Ciao, guys!

    Z

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    In the office
    Posts
    856
    Quote Originally Posted by ServerSupportGuys
    Customer obtains service from you. Is provided a contract clearly outlining the rules of engagement and general do's and dont's of the entire agreement/relationship.

    Customer clearly and repeatedly violates the terms of the agreement. Despite... being asked several times to stop. You decide to terminate the agreement per the contract, which clearly outlines that violation of the agreement / termination of contract by provider states the customer will not be provided a refund.

    Customer demands refund and threatens to post libelous/slanderous statements publicly about us unless we ignore the terms of our agreement and agree to their demands.

    I would like some advice, if possible.

    Should we:

    A.) Follow the terms of our contract and deal with the public lashing.

    or

    B.) Submit to their threats for the sake of avoiding negative publicity.

    Please help us decide.

    They agreed to a contract, and that is what they must go by. We have been through so many clients that have done the same to us, and clients that expect more than they initially sign up for _always_ seem to threaten to make public posts when they dont get their way, you need to not worry about that and allow them to do what makes them feel better. It is a defense mechanism, and the very few clients that feel that they do not have to abide by a contract, or TOS/AUP will use it against you. Good luck

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Tasmania, Australia
    Posts
    34,797
    Quote Originally Posted by MyVPSHost-Susy
    I voted wrong :p , but I would like to go with (A) though.
    I had removed that vote as per your request, but now that another voted in B, your name is back there again
    If you don’t like the road you’re walking on, start paving a new one.

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by ServerSupportGuys

    Should we:

    A.) Follow the terms of our contract and deal with the public lashing.

    or

    B.) Submit to their threats for the sake of avoiding negative publicity.

    Please help us decide.
    My 2 cents: Never give into terrorists!

    you guys offer great service and support. You have nothing to fear.

    Linda -- full disclosure: a satisfied customer

  26. #26
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    1,345
    Stick by your ToS. You remember that customer we talked about on MSN, he did the same thing and then he posted a thread and posted in lots of threads.

    In the end it turned out better for me as my customers posted contradicting his views, people posted supporting me and then he kind of ruined it himself by blaming the "pot" haha.

    So really stick by the ToS, its always the way to go
    Seeksadmin.com Owner: Providing Security, Administration and Optimization since 2001

    Now Offering Windows Serivces.

  27. #27
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    300
    Everybody seems to know ServerSupportGuys, and knows they are an upstanding company, so it's understandable you would all rush to his defense. Sounds good to me.

    But speaking more generally, doesn't it kind of depend on the contract?

    Are you aware that many TOS are written by lawyers with the specific goal that the TOS not be read? All kinds of mass contracts are deliberately written in legalese, and with as many words as possible, in order to induce the "just sign here" response.

    Maybe more people would read and respect TOS if some effort was invested in writing them respectfully?

    Ha, I signed a TOS this morning that starts like this, very first sentence:

    "The XYZ Corporation makes no warranties of any kind, expressed or implied, for the service it is providing."

    ie. You have to give us the money, and who knows what we'll give you in return.

    So, do you really want me to read every word and consider it carefully? If I did, who would I buy hosting from??

    Just another angle, to balance out the one sided thread above, that's all.

  28. #28
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Dallas, Texas USA
    Posts
    71
    Thank you all for your insight.

    I have learned a lot through this experience.

    I've decided that if the client will apologize that i'm going to re-instate the agreement and end it properly and grant them the refund.
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