Sacrificing My Blog

I’m about to bare my soul to you and tell you things that many Pros would say I shouldn’t.

But there’s something bigger than me going on here.

What do you do when you’re a little blogger stuck between two useless vendors?

I’ve been practically non-exist this month.

Along with work, I’ve been updating older posts on the blog, fixing all the errors caused by the permalink change and the WP update.

A few days ago, I came across a new error.

The videos on the Google Luv Course Page all have white backgrounds.

It’s weird, because new visitors will go to the page, see 4 lines of text and then only white space unless they scroll down to and see the big play buttons. Visit the link and tell me it’s not weird.

[box type="download"] SideNote: I host my videos with MaxCDN. I hate how Youtube destroys my screencast quality. And I like making big videos, cause with screencasts you need to see the text clearly enough to read. All the videos on The Strategic Mama Training site are hosted with MaxCDN.[/box]

So I head over to MaxCDN and grab the video coding.

The videos won’t play.

My experience with MaxCDN has always been that they have great support, so I open a chat window and get on it.

The tech gives me coding to add to my site instead of the coding I have. He gives it to me via the chat window. Video still doesn’t work after a 20 minute chat support session. I’ve got a client call in 10 minutes, I ask if I can contact them again later to continue. He says yes.

Twenty minutes later I go to the blog to grab a link from a post to email to the client.

The blog is down.

All my blogs are down.

All my customers’ blogs are down.

I check email.

No one’s noticed.

No complaint emails.

I start troubleshooting.

I try to sign into the cPanel to dig through the SQL Database and remove the page. When I finally get in, the database is odd.

The posts aren’t listed where they should be.

Where the hell are all the posts?

I call Bluehost.

They say they server is undergoing maintenance. That’s Bullshit. I hang up.

I had to get my customers’ blogs up.

Don’t get me wrong, Bluehost has kick ass support for customers…I think it’s us resellers who get the shaft. More on this below.

Everything is running real slow, which means I pissed off the server.

broken blog 300x225 Sacrificing My BlogI look at the clock. It had been 10 minutes since I noticed the blogs were down. I looked at my slow running cpanel and I made a decision.

I just spent the last month updating so many old posts.

Fixing so many errors.

I thought of my customers’ blogs, about their faith in me to provide a reliable service…

I wiped out my blog’s database.

All 2.5 years worth.

I wiped it out and then checked my customers’ blogs, all were running again.

And then I sat there and cried.

Feeling defeated, I left to cook dinner.

What else could I do?

After about an hour I remember…we just had a major WordPress update.

I backed up the blog before doing it.

OMG. I had a backup…somewhere.

Found it and restored the blog and found I’d lost A LOT of work and my last 4 posts. But I still had the past 2.4 years.

But my blog isn’t the same anymore.

Plugins that worked before do not work now.

A lot of elements are missing.

Some posts are scrambled…

On The BlueHost side

So I called Bluehost.

Here’s something I shouldn’t be telling you but i feel it’s important that vendors understand that sucky support is not acceptable.

This has happened on a smaller scale 4 times before – between 4am and 5am.

Shortly after signing up as a Bluehost reseller, I started working on The Strategic Mama Training site.

Four mornings, in one week, as I added MaxCDN coding to the training site to embed class videos, the sites have gone down a few minutes later.

By the time I get through to customer support, the sites are back up.

So I ask, does it have anything to do with my adding video? Is this something I can not do on your servers.

And they always tell me no, everything is fine, it’s not your fault, the server is being maintenance.

Since it was usually between 4am and 5am, and barely lasted 4 minutes, I could swallow that.

But since then, the sites had not gone down again until this incident.

So I call up Bluehost and explain to them what happened.

The Bluehost support guy says it has to be the coding.

Well duh.

So I ask, can I send you the new coding and you take a look and tell me what part of it is not compatible with the server and I’ll discuss with MaxCDN.

The response?

We only provide hosting, we are not coders, I don’t even know a coder to refer you to.

WHAT?

I understand you offer hosting, but you’re telling me that neither you or anyone on staff can look at this coding and tell me what’s causing this issue to take the sites down?

No Ma’am.

Well hell, that’s like being a toilet papar manufacturer but not knowing enough about toilet papaer to know it cleans poop off your arse.

Truth is, I’ve called before for clients who are direct customers of Bluehost and I never once got such a shitty response. Resellers get the shaft. What Bluehost doesn’t seem to get is that I’m not some fake hosting company with a fake name using their resources to compete and make money. I became a reseller so I can offer moms on a budget a less expensive hosting option. I make it clear that I’m a Bluehost reseller.

On the MaxCDN side

A few minutes after the blogs are running again, I checked my email and there was an email from the tech.

He wanted me to know that he realized the chat window messed up some of the coding he told me to use and that I should delete it right away and go back to my MaxCDN dashboard and grab the code from there again.

Too Little TOO Bloody Late Buddy.

We’ve had several emails since.

He is adamant that their coding aligns with Bluehost’s servers.

That their coding could not have hurt my website and that the page does not look weird having white video boxes no one can see.

So I head over to Flowplayer’s site. Flowplayer is the video player MaxCDN codes into the video embed code. On their site, the player also has a white background. So I ask the MaxCDN tech, is there a video player other than Flowplayer that he suggests.

He doesn’t know of any.

Really?

You offer video storage and video on demand streaming and you don’t know of any other player than Flowplayer?

That’s like not knowing that when you’re in the woods and out of toilet paper, you can use leaves.

Final Words

I won’t be leaving Bluehost unless someone gives me a good offer and can move all my customer’s blogs and actually has support that is willing to go the extra mile – like APPLE.

I’m looking for a replacement for MaxCDN for storing my videos.

MaxCDN on Bluehost servers may not be the best combo is you decide to host your own videos.

I really do wish I weren’t such a little blogger…maybe then vendors would listen and offer better support.

After Bedtime Blog is alive and seems I’ll be busy again fixing it.

Hugs to all who read this.

Can you do a little blogger a solid and leave a comment sharing your feelings about my experience with Bluehost and MaxCDN support teams and share this post across social media? Maybe someone will listen to actual consumers.

p.s. if you have a pop up window blocker on your browser, the share buttons won’t seem to work.

Art: Clockby ~xBBS

26 Responses to Sacrificing My Blog

  • Alison says:

    God I’m so sorry this happened to you. I think you’re amazing for sacrificing your blog for your customers. And I’m so glad you had a backup. I would have died if I lost everything.

    Bluehost has always been pretty good to me, except it’s freaking hard to even get to talk to a support staff via IM, I’ve waited for over an hour just to chat with someone. But, I haven’t had any complicated issues fortunately, so everything worked out for me.

    Your video hosting chap? Wow. I hope you find someone else real soon and you can kick them to the curb.

    2013, you need to be nice to Vanita!
    Alison recently posted..Happy Holidays!My Profile

  • UGH UGH UGH. Vanita I’m so sorry. I. I just can’t imagine sacrificing my own blog like that. You’re so right. You guys do get the shaft in this situation. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. I’m so lucky to have you in my little blogging life :) Thanks for all the weight you carry on your shoulders. We other mama bloggers appreciate it very very much. Hopefully 2013 starts off better. Hugs girl.

    • vanitacyril says:

      girl…sometimes…ya gotta do whatcha gotta do. :-D
      my very first job when i was 14 was working for mcdonalds.
      customer service is ingrained in my brain.
      i find these guys very much lacking.
      thanks for stopping by!
      2013 will be much better to both of us!
      vanitacyril recently posted..Sacrificing My BlogMy Profile

  • Laura says:

    I can’t even imagine what you went through and still are dealing with. Cooking dinner instead of working on your blog, that is defeated ;). I know I cried when i broke my blog but have seemed to be able to fix it every time, fingers crossed now I back up weekly!
    Laura recently posted..Daily JournalingMy Profile

  • Vidya Sury says:

    I knew the half of what you were going through and I think it is absolutely unacceptable. Bluehost has such a good reputation. I come from a sales/marketing background – and personally believe that while direct customers are important, we went the extra mile for our resellers and distributors. Why? The logic is so simple. Customer = 1 customer. Reseller = multiple customers. So would I not want to give preferential treatment to a reseller who is going to bring me multiple customers? There’s no difference between the offline and online world in this case since customer service must always be solid.

    Considering how compassionate and responsive you are with your customers, I am really sorry you are going through this shit. I will definitely socialize this post and I do hope things are sorted out.

    Hugs. I’ll be happy to help in any way I can, Vanita. Things will all be okay. Keep the faith.
    Vidya Sury recently posted..Home – No Airline Tickets To Vacation Here!My Profile

  • Sue says:

    Hi! I can relate to what you are going through on a smaller scale. I have been going through some technical issues and with very poor customer service myself during these holidays. I also have Bluehost and they usually do good by me, but just recently these past two days, I get different answers, so it is like any customer service sometimes where if you hang up and call back, you get a different answer. I am so sorry this has happened to you and I hope that this 2013 brings GREAT things for you.

  • Tracie says:

    What a crazy mess!

    I hope you are able to get it worked out, and find a video storage situation that won’t mess with your site.
    Tracie recently posted..Thoughts On A Year Of HopeMy Profile

  • PragmaticMom says:

    Yikes! I had issues with Blue Host two years ago and switched a few times. I ended up at Stable Host and I’ve been happy there. As for CDNMax and videos, sorry it’s such a pain!
    PragmaticMom recently posted..Retrofit Weight Loss GIVEAWAY Worth $3108My Profile

  • Ann says:

    I was wondering what happened! I was trying to share your post on Sandy Hook and it was gone from your site! That totally stinks! I am so sorry you had to deal with all that. Blogging issues can eat up so much time! Personally have have had one good and one bad experience dealing with Bluehost tech support. Will share Vanita, good luck!
    Ann recently posted..Happy New YearMy Profile

  • Oh. My. God. I can’t believe you’ve gone through all of this. It’s completely crazy- there is nothing like website mayhem to make me all stabby and screamy, and I cannot even imagine going through it on your level. I hope you’ve been able to take a few breaths and step away from this a little bit. What these companies don’t realize is that if they offer just a little bit more to their customers, we will repay them a million fold by sharing and recommending them all over the internet. We need just a little bit of hand-holding and none of the attitude that seems so prevalent. Ick.
    Jeanette Nyberg recently posted..I’m Slightly NervousMy Profile

  • Winnie says:

    So sorry you are having to deal with these problems. It is so thoughtful of you to sacrifice your blog for your customers. So sad for the lack of customer service for you. I hope it all gets straightened out well soon.

  • Josh says:

    That is ridiculous. My hosting is done through a friend who is more tech savvy than I am so when I blow things up I usually can rely upon him for help.

    But I also have been paying for Vaultpress just in case. I don’t have a lot of faith in customer service in a lot of these places.

    They mean well, but they don’t always pay what they should and the personnel sometimes reflects that.

    Sorry about your experience, that sucks.
    Josh recently posted..Free Advice That’s Worth Listening ToMy Profile

  • Maureen says:

    That sucks big time, V and you are such a super lady for sacrificing yourself. I’m so so glad you had backup! I am so gonna be sharing this and hope you’ll find a better replacement for MaxCDN. Hugs!
    Maureen recently posted..Not A New Year’s ResolutionMy Profile

  • Jessica says:

    I am so sorry to hear about your experiences with Bluehost. I don’t do much with Dreamhost so, I’ve never found any real issues with them. But I can imagine how frustrating it all must be for you! So, is everything almost recovered now? It’s so great that you backed everything up!!

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Vanita Cyril

Vanita Cyril

Entrepreneur | WAH Mom | Supporter of Mom Entrepreneurs Everywhere

I'm one wicked SEO demystifying, WordPress theme designing WAH Mom who tweets, pins, blogs and conquers the world while simultaneously searching for blankies, proof reading English assignments and burning dinner.

Yes, I do burn dinner daily.

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