Because I find this such an amazing story of what happens when people make the wrong choice, I think I am obligated to post an update. Here’s the story so far as I have been able to follow:
- January 15th (Morning)- Dreamhost, a rather transparent web host makes mistake of billing all of it’s customers for a total of 7.5 million+ dollars. It was caused by a script that someone had entered the wrong dates for. Makes the stupid mistake of also posting the picture of the employee who did it.
- January 15th (Afternoon) – Dreamhost issues a rather poor apology to it’s customers. Begins refunding people.
- January 16th – Dreamhost wises up and issues a better apology… They believe that all the refunds had been issued successfully and tells the public what they have changed in their biller to prevent it from ever happening again.
- January 17th – Reports are now coming in the comments that people’s cards are now showing the charge against them.. (This tells me dreamhost didn’t void them but actually refunded them).
- January 17th – Dreamhost announces that their script to issue refunds didn’t work the way it was supposed to (did someone ever test this?)
- January 18th – More angry people reporting charges on their cards… Issue still not completely resolved.
I really don’t understand why they didn’t just void out all the transactions? Credit cards, although they will go into a pending state, are not real time, and you can void transactions before they actually get to the person’s account rather easily (or at least I can). If Dreamhost doesn’t have a similiar system in place, than they need to get one. If they do have the same abilities I have, then they made a poor decision to simply not void out all the transactions whether or not it screwed up their internal accounting system (it’s more messed up now than when the problem first happened based on what they’ve put online).
In any case, I have more to say about this, but it will have to wait for another blog post… Again, my deepest apologies to anyone I have recommended Dreamhost to in the past… Westhost all the way (for everyday use)! More on that later too.