Right Working Romantic Related Learning Friendly Healthy Legal Inspirational Unfiltered

The Road To “Consequences” Is Paved With Good Intentions

, , , , , , | Right | January 18, 2023

I work as a website designer by trade. I went to adopt a dog from a charity, and I realized very quickly that they had way more animals than they could manage. Talking with the person in charge, I learned that they had very little exposure because their website and social media were completely abandoned. Her brother built and maintained it, but by the looks of things, it had never been touched. He was apparently in the business of selling websites.

I offered to redesign the website, clean up every single image, add a GUI for them to update it, optimize it for search engines, integrate social media, and add a contact form as well as testimonials. All for free, without a link to my gallery.

I used to make very avant-garde websites, ideal for galleries and the like.

I told her I’d have it done in a month since it was being worked on during my spare time.

Three weeks later, I had the final draft ready, so I showed her and she loved it. I uploaded it to their domain, and all was well.

Three or so days later, I got an email asking me to explain how the code worked since her brother wanted to “streamline” it. I told her that the code had been encrypted and that I was the only one able to modify it.

She got furious. She was confused as to why I’d encrypted it and wanted me to remove the encryption. I explained that I had encrypted it to prevent unauthorized modification, replication, and redistribution of my code. I explained that if I gave her brother the bare code, he could easily take it and sell it himself.

Apparently, that made me a fraudster. I was “stealing their domain” and she would sue me. I again explained my position and how I owned the code, not the domain. I offered to sell them the source code, but considering the time, skill, and resources I’d invested, I would be willing to start at $2,000. And that was extortion. How dare I try to extort money out of a charity?

So, since I still had access to the FTP (file transfer protocol), I restored their original website, deleted the newer restore points, and had a lawyer draft a withdrawal of the license letter.

A day later, her brother called and told me that I should unencrypt my code and upload it again or there would be “consequences”.

To this day, I haven’t had any consequences.

Question of the Week

Have you ever met a customer who thought the world revolved around them?

I have a story to share!