Hosting ethics: what’s up with gamehosting?

8 August, 2007 (12:23) | Game industry, Rants

So the other day I was browsing the regular game sites looking for something new and I was astonished  to find out popular Dutch index website startpagina.nl removed a link to our company website from their gameserver related subsite http://gameserver.startpagina.nl. We received some weird feedback after our company mailed the webmaster: we were removed because we didn’t pay the webmaster and he could not confirm we were a trustworthy company.

No problem, except the website startpagina.nl used to be a website like dmoz.org and used to have quality links. Now the website is filled with links to 404 pages and companies that went out of business years ago.
And the webmaster of the startpagina subsite? He’s connected to one of the new smaller GSPs added on the site.

GSPs and ethics

More people in the gamehosting business have a complete lack ethics and this is a direct cause of the mistrust of customers in the companies. On our helpdesk this has a direct influence on the customer contact; customers think they’re dealing with a one man company, customers think they won’t have to pay the invoices and some even try to order our services to see if we deliver without being paid. Fraudulent orders are up to 25% during school holidays.

While trying to compete with the other GSPs many of the smaller companies try to look big: they say they own their own datacenter, have 10+ employees and announce they host a tenfold of servers as in reality. This messes up the customer experience so bad they distrust the complete gamehosting business. It takes great investment in customer service to convince the customer of the quality we can offer.

A year ago I wrote a column for Dutch game website Gamert. It tells the story of a GSP review website. Three months after the website went life, over half the companies listed were out of business. GPSs come and go and there is only a select group of gamehosters over 2 years in business.

Two years, what’s two years for a business?

A very good initiative is GameserverCheck.de. They offer reviews of gameserver companies by their customers, but also a “Vor-ort-check” where GameserverCheck visits the company, talks with the staff and lists all important data of the company.

The GameserverCheck website deserves an international version.

Comments

Comment from Sebastian
Date: September 19, 2007, 1:16 PM

Who cares that you guys aren’t anymore on gameserver.startpagina.nl that website has only 7 or 8 visitors a day 😛

Comment from Stewie
Date: September 19, 2007, 4:07 PM

True 😛

Comment from Dirk
Date: October 26, 2007, 5:01 PM

A couple of years ago I also had a small gaming isp, if you search for the name of my company in google you see a ad for i3d, wow that are some real ethics…

Comment from Stewie
Date: October 26, 2007, 10:39 PM

Can’t handle the competition? Than don’t try to run a business.