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I'm being blackmailed by Web Designer/Administrator (5 posts)

  1. swellcity7
    Member
    Posted 4 years ago #

    Okay so this is a bit complicated but please bare with me...I need help.

    I owed this webdesigner: "Austin Passy"/Frosy Web Designs (www.frostywebdesigns.com) $300 for a website called Volume-pr.com/powered by WordPress. He helped create another website of mine called SwellCityGuide.com ..I was ALL PAID off on that. I don't owe him any money for that website. I asked him to please be patient with the $300 and I even gave him a contract with my address promising that I will pay the $300 for Volume.

    This guy went in and made himself the administrator and took down Volume and Swell City (the one I don't owe money for). He blackmailed me and said "Pay atleast $50 or Swell City will stay down". So I had to borrow $50 from a friend because I am literally broke until August 3rd. He still hasn't put my Swell City website back up.

    I feel like I was forced to pay $ (that I don't have) to put my website back up that I don't even owe him money for!! Is this ethical? I really feel like I've been bullied and it's not like I didn't plan on paying him. I did and I told him that.

    How can I kick him out from being an administrator and messing around with my Swell City website? Granted, Volume can stay down but I don't think it's fair for him to be able to blackmail me and mess with my Swell city website.

    Please help...any and all advice would be highly appreciated.

  2. TransPersonal
    Member
    Posted 4 years ago #

    Next time work out a payment plan beforehand, like the exact deadline for when the money can be paid. In this case the designer himself is a victim, after all cash flow is very important to running a business. That been said, did you keep backups of your database and wordpress files from before they were hacked by the designer?

  3. swellcity7
    Member
    Posted 4 years ago #

    The designer WAS a victim until he extorted the money from me. Do you not understand that I DID NOT OWE HIM MONEY FOR THE WEBSITE THAT HE HELD HOSTAGE???

    If that's not the most unprofessional behavior then I don't know what is.

  4. esmi
    Forum Moderator
    Posted 4 years ago #

    But you do owe him money. What do you expect him to do? Live on fresh air?

    Next time, don't ask for work to be done if you don't have the funds to pay for it. In some countries, that could be considered fraud.

  5. StrangeAttractor
    Member
    Posted 4 years ago #

    The designer WAS a victim until he extorted the money from me. Do you not understand that I DID NOT OWE HIM MONEY FOR THE WEBSITE THAT HE HELD HOSTAGE???

    If that's not the most unprofessional behavior then I don't know what is.

    Sounds like unprofessional behavior from all parties involved, but of course, we're only hearing your side of the story.

    You could report him to the Better Business Bureau, but it certainly sounds like you are also at fault in this transaction.

    Also, you might contact your hosting service about this, so that you can regain access to the site (I'm assuming it's in your name).

    As a developer myself, I've been burned by clients like you, and just wound up eating the costs, and resolving never to do work for that client again (and telling my own network of designers to avoid the client as well).

    I've also learned to use better contracts with clients I haven't worked with before, and to ask for payment milestones and retainers before doing any work at all, so that at least some money has been exchanged.

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