2011 hasn’t been the easiest of years for GoDaddy.com’s public relations team. First, it had to deal with Internet backlash after a video of its CEO shooting elephants while on vacation appeared online, and now the company is facing a boycott for its support of the Stop Online Piracy Act.
In op-eds published in October and November, GoDaddy.com’s EVP, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary Christine Jones, called SOPA “a welcome step in the right direction” and “thoughtful and comprehensive,” declared its opponents “myopic” and complained that the Digital Millennium Copyright Act is too limited with regard to trademark infringement. She also made a surprisingly patriotic argument in favor of the act, writing that “[t]his debate is about preserving, protecting, and creating American jobs, and protecting American consumers from the dangers that they face on-line. Americans should have ready access to purchase legitimate American products.”
In response to this, one Reddit user has launched a boycott of GoDaddy, moving his business’ 51 domains from the company, and suggesting December 29 as “Move Your Domain Away from GoDaddy Day.” Fellow Redditors immediately commented, supporting this suggestion and sharing not only GoDaddy horror stories, but also alternative hosting companies or offering promotional codes to make switching more attractive (Sample codes: “BYEBYEGD” and “SOPASucks”).
In a statement released last night to Ars Technica, GoDaddy is playing down the boycott, saying that the company “has received some emails that appear to stem from the boycott prompt, but we have not seen any impact to our business. We understand there are many differing opinions on the SOPA regulations.”
Disclosure: Time Inc. parent company Time Warner supports SOPA legislation.
Graeme McMillan is a reporter at TIME. Find him on Twitter at @Graemem or on Facebook at Facebook/Graeme.McMillan. You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME.