WEB DESIGN AND WEB HOSTING, GRAPHIC DESIGN, WEB DESIGNERS

Web Design and Hosting by James A. Peden of Middlebury, Vermont - Award Winning Web Designers

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BEWARE THE DARK SIDE OF THE WEB


I'll say this only once: There's no such thing as a free lunch.

Today the most common word on the web is probably "free".   Free hosting, free e-commerce, free email... get rich quick, and it's all free.

Sheer baloney.  All of these scammers are out to get something from you. It usually breaks into three categories:

  • Your Labor to promote their Banner Advertising - Count on a banner ad or link to somewhere else on every one of "your" pages.  This is a clever way to add content to what are actually "their" web pages, not yours.
  • "Free e-commerce" if you use their hosting or (expensive) credit card services.  Variations of this scam typically offer one service for "free" while you pay for the rest.  The bottom line is always money out of your pocket and a very questionable site at best.
  • Data Mining -  Every visitor to your site will be scrutinized for valuable marketing data, including harvesting email addresses to be sold to spammers.  Web servers amass enormous amounts of statistics, and unless your personal webmaster has full and exclusive server control, your privacy is definitely not guaranteed.

Also please note that domain name registration is NEVER free.  Even the scammers have to pay for a www.yourname.com registration.  They'll get the cost out of you some way.

If your proposed site is really not important except to you and a few close friends to whom you can personally advise of the URL, and if you really don't care about all of the pitfalls I've outlined above, then use the "free" services at your own risk.

But if your site is important to you and/or your organization, then settle for nothing less than a professional webmaster who has full control of a quality web server that no one else can possibly tamper with.

PARTING NOTE ON THIS SUBJECT

Arguably about 90% of the "web designers" out there are actually part-time amateurs who have some sort of quickie web development software.   Even a lot of the "bigger" design and hosting companies tend to hire high school and college kids to do the actual programming.  Some of them actually build "nice to look at" pages but unfortunately few if any of them know anything about the subtle design requirements necessary for a decent presence on the search engines.   I'll talk more about that in my section on ELEMENTS OF MODERN WEB DESIGN .

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Design by James A. Peden
Copyright 2000-2004

Hosted by  Middlebury Networks. All rights reserved.
Revised: February 23, 2004

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Java, JavaScript, script, CGI.  Site description: Web Design by James A. Peden -
Jim is an award-winning web designer specializing in small businesses