web site development :: graphic design :: logos :: animations

Edian Design Blog

June 17, 2006

Savastore hell

Filed under: General — admin @ 1:56 pm

Lat year we published three articles about Savastore aka Watford Electronics. One of them was about our own experience of purchasing an Aries notebook, the other two were based on this and other peoples’ experiences of dealing with them.  You can read them here.

A year later we received the following email from Mr Hills at Savastore:..

“Dear Edian Design
http://www.ediandesign.com/blog/savastore.php

I find both the posts on this page to be untrue and harmful to our business.  Please get these removed without delay and let me know by reply.  We are prepared to take legal action if necessary to get this removed, as you state in your terms that you are not responsible for the posts please provide me with contact details of the people who did make these posts.
The pages in question have been downloaded and printed as evidence should we require it.
I hope you can assist.
Regards
Mr Peter Hills
Customer Services Manager ”

—————– 

We didn’t reply because we were abroad. Less than a week later another email arrived:

“URGENT

I have sent 2 emails to you with out reply about abusive and incorrect blogs on your website about Watford Electronics and SavaStore.com.  If you continue to refuse to get back to me then we will commence legal proceedings without further notice.

Your urgent attention is required.

Regards

Mr Peter Hills
Customer Services Manager”

————— 

I was still abroad so I sent him a letter:
“Dear Mr Hills,

Firstly, according to our mail box you had only sent one previous email to us.  Secondly, you should have received an automated reply informing you that we were not available until the 9th June. This and your previous email were forwarded to my personal email account. We are currently away and unable to reply from our business email accounts.

I find it extraordinary that you, who hardly ever reply to customers’ emails & requests, threaten us with legal proceedings for not responding to your email within a few days! Please get your priorities right and focus your energy on dealing with the nightmares your company seems to put their customers through.

In your previous email you mentioned that you objected to two posts on one of our pages – then you said you wanted “both pages” to be removed. This is confusing. What exactly do you object to?

You also said that the posts are untrue. They were certainly true at the time they were published – we have enough evidence & witnesses to prove this. Upon my return to the UK I shall check with our lawyer and may change some of the wording if he so advises. Until then I am unable to change anything.”

——————–

So we are now back and we are disinclined to change the posts that were published on our blog last year. Instead we’d like to invite Mr Hills to comment on these posts and explain what he thinks is untrue or misleading in these posts. As far as we are concerned these posts were true at the time they were published.

If Customer Services at Savastore has improved since, we’d like to invite people who were satisfied with Watford Electronics to say so below. However, according to other forums – such as Grumbletext, Stormloader, Watford Blog & ReviewcentreCustomer Services at Watford Electronics is still appalling. Many of the posts published on these sites are far more critical, personal and potentially damaging to their business and off-putting to new customers than the posts on our blog. Is Mr Hills going to sue all those who dare warn others against buying things at Watford/Savastore? Perhaps this is what he’s been doing rather than concentrating on providing good customer care for those who shop at Savastore.com.

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June 10, 2006

Cheap Domains

Filed under: domains — admin @ 9:26 am

If you’re looking for domain names, be careful as to where you buy them. We purchased a domain back in January from domainsarefree.com (owned by Globat) for only $3.99. We just wanted to secure the name for a few months before creating a website for it. However, as it turned out, the domain was not registered despite having received a receipt & confirmation of our order. I noticed several months later that the domain was registered by someone else. I was shocked and wrote an email to them:..

On the 21st January I registered the domain XXX.com with you.
Below I have attached the confirmation invoice you sent me at the time.

Last week I noticed that the domain is not owned by me, but by GoDaddy, who registered it on the 28th April. How could this have happened?
Having received your confirmation of my order, I assumed that the registration was complete.
You sent me a strange email the following day regarding your web hosting services, although I had not purchased any of your hosting plans.

I just don’t understand why the registration didn’t get through properly and, more importantly, why you didn’t notify me of it.
Also, why do you send an invoice/receipt before an order is completed?

Obviously I am rather unhappy about losing this domain, which I was just about to get hosted. I am very dissatisfied with your service.
What are you able to do in order to get this domain name back?

Their response was:

“Your account was never registered with us because you did not want to verify your information with us.”

I replied:

I’m not sure what you mean by never registering an account with you.
I registered a domain name. I paid for it. I was sent a confirmation of its registration. I even checked on the internet and it was no longer available to register by anyone else.

As you can read from my email sent to you on the 22nd Jan I did not want any WEB HOSTING services. Your email sent to me after the registration requiring proof of identity did not mention anything about the registration of my domain. I bought the domain from domainsarefree.com – there was no formal indication that Globat was involved in the registration process or that it had any right to request more information about me. The confirming email from domainsarefree certainly didn’t say so. The email from Globat requesting proof of identity didn’t say so either.

I also find it rather strange that you didn’t inform me when the domain registration did not go through properly. Why? Surely if a customer is sent a receipt it means that an order has been completed?

I’ve now lost an important domain that I thought I had registered five months ago. It is just unacceptable.

They replied:

“Please read my previous reply.  You did not want to verify your
account with us, thus the agent handling your account frauded it out.  It had nothing to do with web hosting services.  It was a verification that you were the person who created the domain account.  Your account was never debited for the amount and you can double check for yourself on your account.”

My response:

I HAVE read your previous email properly. Perhaps you should read mine.
This is the email I received from Globat after registering my domain:

Dear E:

Thank you for your recent order of a Globat.com web hosting account. We appreciate your business.

Due to certain security precautions regarding online ordering we need to verify some information before we can finish processing your order. Please call or email our billing department with a working telephone number and a good time to reach you. You may leave a message as well.  If we cannot connect over the phone then we ask that customers paying with a credit card,  fax a copy of a valid picture ID and the front of your credit card to the fax number listed below. For customers paying with Paypal, you can fax a copy of a valid ID and confirmation of your paypal payment with the paypal email address. For customers paying with Echeck please fax a copy of a valid picture ID . This aids in the quick identification and application of payment to activate your account.
—————————

You say that your verification request “had nothing to do with web hosting services. It was a verification that you were the person who created the domain account

So where exactly in this email are you asking me to verify my ID regarding registering a domain??? I didn’t even know what this email was about, as it mentioned nothing about the domain I had purchased.
As I said before, domainsarefree sent me an invoice and a confirmation of my order. That normally means that an order is completed, does is not?

Their reply:

“No, I would not think that as being confirmed. You need to confirm it via phone with our billing department for an account to be provisioned and confirmed.  We can no longer register this name for you.”

At this point I got rather pissed off:

“I think you’re missing the real point of this issue.
Let me outline the problem simply.

1, I registered a domain from domainsarefree.com
2, I received a confirmation of my order & a receipt letting me know that the registration was successful.
3, the WHOIS database showed that the domain was taken (i.e. by me)
4, domainsarefree did not ask me to verify my identity in order to complete the registration of my domain.
5, I was sent an email from Globat asking me to verify my identity for a “web hosting account” I had supposedly ordered. But I had ordered no such thing. In this email there was no reference whatsoever to the registration of my domain. I though this email was just spam.
6, I therefore assumed for six months that I was the legal owner of the domain. I was sent no notice or warning that the registration had not been fully processed.

The questions remain – why was I not informed about the registration not being completed? Why was I sent a receipt of my order being completed? Furthermore, if registering a domain requires verification of identity – why was this not clearly indicated during the registration process?

I don’t know any other registrar who operates like this and misleads customers. I have registered dozens of domains via different registrars – none of them have required verification of identity without clearly stating this on their registration form!

Their reply:

“I appreciate you taking the time to explain what the situation is.  I fully understand what you are stating but when I check the WHOIS info, it is not registered by you.  If you state that the WHOIS info when you first registered the domain stated your info, then there is no way that the domain would become free and be taken by someone else.”

This was sent on the 22nd May. Obviously what I meant was that I checked the WHOIS database just after registering the domain – it said that the domain was taken but details were not yet available. I checked the database again in April – this is when I discovered that the domain was not owned by us! This is why I was complaining to them…

I got bored with the whole thing. They just don’t want to accept responsibility. We will never buy a domain or any other hosting services from Globat. Neither will we recommend them to any of our clients. We warn anybody wanting to register a domain to stay away from this company and other ones that offer domains at a too-good-to-be-true price!
 

• • •
 

May 11, 2006

Fashion & Beauty domains

Filed under: domains — admin @ 6:14 pm

Do you want to set up a networking site for fashionistas and the beauty conscious? Or a site that has all the contacts people need for the latest fashions, trends & styles? Or are you in the fashion or beauty industry and would like to have a great domain name?

We have a few domain names for sale that could be used for fashion or beauty related sites. Why don’t you grab these domains before someone else (your competition) does!.. 

Stylenetworking.com
Beautynetworking.com
Fashion-contacts.com
Style-contacts.com

Just click on the domain you’re interested in buying and make us an offer! If we accept your offer you can send us a payment via PayPal.

When we receive your payment, we’ll transfer the ownership of the domain/s to you or to your company. At this point you’ll become the legal owner of the domain. We’ll send you the username & password and then you’ll be able to login to your account and change the WHOIS details (owner, admin, technical contacts), redirect the domain, or park the domain with the registrar, or point the DNS settings to your web host. The current registrar of these domains is Registerfly. They are ICANN accredited and easy to use. However, you can transfer the domain to another registrar if you prefer.

Confused???

If this sounds a bit confusing to you, we’ll be happy to sort out these settings for you – FREE of charge.

We are a fully registered limited company in the UK – purchasing a domain from us is guaranteed. Also, the current registrar is an ICANN accredited registrar but you can transfer the domain to another registrar if you so wish.

Domain Name Tips 

  • Good domains are short
  • Good domains are easily remembered
  • Good domains have a keyword in them
  • .com domains are worth more than other ones

Read our article about finding the right web host!

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April 8, 2006

Hostony

Filed under: Web site promotion — admin @ 12:52 pm

Our site used to be hosted by Hostony. It was cheap. It allowed more than one domain under the same account. It started well. However, within a month our server was down for a couple of days – they upgraded us to their gold-plan which offered more disk space & bandwidth. Things were OK for a while.

Then we noticed that our sites were down on a daily basis, and when they were running they were very slow. We’ve contacted Hostony many times, but their technical support is quite ridiculous. They have outsourced this service to Ukraine or somewhere in the ex-Soviet block – which would not be a bad thing if their staff spoke English properly.
Here are just a few responses we got from them:..

“Tell me some mailbox name and password for it for tests.”
“Ticket was automatically closed because of it is out of date. Given solution will be considered to be true.”
“You or anybody requested the password”
“There is a client DoSing from the server”

OK, you can work out what they are trying to say, but please – this is not meant to be a language exercise! Hostony is supposed to provide a professional service – if they aim to serve the English speaking market they should employ people who are technically & linguistically competent. 

The final straw was their decision to move our account to a new server – but they forgot to inform us. Our MySQL databases were set back a fortnight – fortunately we had a recent back-up, but we could have lost lots of data. We had various problems for the following weeks as a result of this move. Although our sites were up and running, they were very slow and we couldn’t monitor some of them via Awstats & Webalizer.  We sent several emails to Hostony explaining how important it was for us to see the statistics – they were disinclined to reply or do anything about it. Eventually we had to get a programmer to sort the problem out.

Then we just moved to another hosting company.

So do be aware of Hostony! They are a cheap web hosting company, but they also provide a cheap service.  Their inefficient & ineffective customer support is ludicrous and totally unacceptable. Also, they cannot be contacted by telephone.

 

 

 

• • •
 

March 29, 2006

Music & Pop networking

Filed under: domains — admin @ 2:33 pm

We have these two domain names for sale:

Musicnetworking.net

Popnetworking.com

These could be used for a brilliant website to share and swap music.
If you’re interested in purchasing one or both of them, just click on the hyperlink and submit your offer on the bidding form..

What happens next?

If we accept your offer, you can send us a payment with Paypal. Then we’ll set up a new account with the registrar on your behalf and send you the username & password (which you can change).  We then push the domain name to your new account. At this point you’ll become the legal owner of the domain and be able to change the password, amend the contact & admin details, configure the DNS settings or redirect the domain to another url.

Is it safe?

We are a fully registered limited company in the UK – purchasing a domain from us is guaranteed. Also, the current registrar is an ICANN accredited registrar but you can transfer the domain to another registrar if you so wish.

So if you want to set up a pop or music network why don’t you grab the domain before someone else gets it????

Domain buying Tips

  • Buy a domain with your most important keyword in it
  • Or one that is unique but short 
  • The shorter the name the better
  • Do not stuff the domain with keywords
  • Try to avoid dashes between words

Read our article about finding the right web host!

• • •
 

March 20, 2006

Small animated gifs

Filed under: Graphic design — admin @ 12:47 pm

Here are a few animated gifs – use them on your site or in your emails. Just right-click on the one you want and save it locally! These gif animations are small in size  – but add a bit of fun to web pages and emails. 
Gif animations are better than Flash animations because they do not require plug-ins to run on a website..
angry man

swimming

fitness

fitness

walking
If you have a logo or an image, it can be easily animated. If you don’t know how to do this, contact us, and we can do it for you for a small fee.  We can also design a brand new customised logo for your company – static and/or animated!

We’ll publish a few examples of the logos we’ve designed very soon in our blog and put a link to them on this page!

 

• • •
 

March 11, 2006

Finding the right Web Host

Filed under: Web site promotion — admin @ 12:05 am

There are hundreds of web hosting companies out there offering the best hosting service your money can buy. The choice is endless. The techno jargon is daunting.
So which one to choose?..

It really depends on your needs.

Do you want to target a word audience or a specific country – i.e. you’re selling things for the UK market, your site should be hosted by a company based in the UK. If your site has an international theme, then the server hosting your site should be located in the States.

The second issue you should consider is the size of your site. Do you have many dynamic pages or does your site mainly consist of straight html pages? Do you want to run a forum or a blog?  If you have a large site with thousands of pages you should consider signing up for a dedicated server.

The third issue is traffic. How many visitors do you have per months? How many are you aiming for? Again, if you have thousands of visitors per day, you should consider a dedicated server.

Some companies offer the hosting of more than one domain under one account. If you have many sites – this might be a good solution for you, but be careful, your monthly allowance of bandwidth & disk space has to be shared between your sites.

When you’ve considered these issues go to this site and read the reviews of web-hosts.

We, at Edian Design, have dealt with many web hosting companies. We didn’t like Hostway because they were inefficient and expensive. On the other end of the scale Hostony offers a good value hosting plan – but their customer service is absolutely dreadful (read our story). Stay away from them – or move away! Hostgator also offers good value hosting plans, so far we have been pleased with their hosting & customer service.
Lunarpages offer an excellent, reliable service – but it doesn’t come cheap.

If you’re looking for a budget hosting company in the UK, we highly recommend 34SP, we have been pleased with them. Another good UK company is 3dpixelnet.

Be careful with web sites offering charts of  the ” best web hosting companies” or “top hosts“,  “best web hosting reviews”  etc  – most of these sites are affiliating sites, i.e. they do not present an independent view (nor reviews) of web hosts. However, this site seems to offer an independent review of hosting companies  – so far the reviews correspond with our experiences of various web hosting companies.

Anyway, good luck in finding a good host for your site an let us know if you find one!

• • •
 

March 8, 2006

Sport Networking

Filed under: domains — admin @ 4:23 pm

The domains sportnetworking.net & leisurenetworking.com are now for sale.
If you’re thinking of setting up a site for networking in the leisure industry or for people who are into sport, these domains will help you to attract many visitors! So why don’t you buy one or both of them from us?
 
We are a fully registered UK company. Buying domains is safe and easy, particularly if you use Paypal.

When we receive your payment, you’ll become the legal owner of the domain. We’ll give you the username and password and you’ll be able to login to your account and   change the WHOIS details (owner, admin, technical contacts), redirect the domain, or park the domain with the registrar, or repoint the DNS settings to your webhost. You could also transfer the domain to another registrar, if you so wish – although the current registrar of these domains is a quite a good one (and ICANN accredited).
If this sound a bit complicated to you, we’ll be happy to do these settings for you – FREE of charge.

If you want to buy one of these domains, please click on the one you’re interested in, and bid the amount you wish to offer.

Leisurenetworking
Sportnetworking

Domain buying Tips

  • Buy domains that have your keyword in them or are unique (but short & easily remembered) 
  • Avoid domains with dashes
  • Avoid keyword-stuffed domains
  • Avoid long domain names with many words
• • •
 

March 1, 2006

Site Problems

Filed under: General — admin @ 5:06 pm

We have moved to a new host! Unfortunately the move wasn’t as smooth as we would have liked –  we seem to be having problems with our databases. emoticon So many of our pages, enquiry forms and the blog don’t function properly.
We’d like to apologise for the inconvenience this has caused.

Sorry!

emoticon

• • •
 

February 24, 2006

Why use CSS

Filed under: Web design — admin @ 8:01 pm

The design and creation of websites goes around in circles. I remember how inspired I was ten years ago by those wonderful sites created in Director or Flash! In fact I got totally hooked on them and produced some funky pages, sites & presentations.

Then reality hit me. Neither the search engines nor the average users liked them. Apparently, the SEs could not read the files, and people could not be bothered to download the plug-ins. So I panicked. How on earth am I going to recreate my sites without using Flash or Director?????

I stared to experiment with Javascript and Java applets. To be honest they were just too complicated for me and use a lot of scripts. As far as layouts were concerned, I also found tables and cells frustrating – something never worked with them, or if they did work, they worked in IE but not in Netscape and vice-versa. It used to drive me crazy!..

Then I discovered CSS – cascading style sheets. I was suspicious at first – not another non-standard tool that could make my life hell???? I was right, nothing seemed to work properly – or the same old scenario of working in one browser but not in the other kept happening.

Gradually, however, I got used to it, I got the hang of it, I got even quite good at it… and now I’m loving it! Why?

CSS gives total flexibility in designing layouts

You can have many divisions (i.e. what Netscape originally called layers) and position them wherever you want on the page. 

Using CSS results in clean pages

It’s best to create an external style sheet and attach it to the pages. This creates a clean HTML or PHP page, that is quick to load and can be read easily by the SE robots.

CSS can be used to make websites creative again

Just check out the Zen garden templates. It’s amazing what you can do with a bit of imagination and some knowledge of CSS. Basically, the coding is the same for all those examples – it’s just the CSS that is different.

CSS versus flash?

My verdict is that the combination of animated gifs and CSS can create just as good and creative pages as Flash can – and, of course, it’s open source i.e. free!

Another good thing about CSS is that it’s now becoming more standardised across the various browsers – so if you haven’t yet given up on tables to position your objects it’s really time for you to learn some CSS! emoticon

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