Long-time reader and friend Holly Jahangiri reported to me about an important story I overlooked. Early last month, Hostgator, one of the largest Web hosts, began testing a major change in the way it handles DMCA notices, introducing a simple online form that those who wish to file complaints can fill out.
The change is a shift from Hostgator’s official policy of only accepting DMCA notices via either fax or snail mail, a controversial practice that more and more hosting companies are getting away from, most notably Google Blogspot, not only because such methods create slowdowns and hurdles for those filing DMCA notices, but also need extra processing time for the host.
Previously, one could email a DMCA notice to Hostgator but only through their datacenter, The Planet. Given that most Hostgator sites show up as being on ThePlanet’s servers, many have likely filed such notices without even realizing it however, ThePlanet has always forwarded on such complaints and they have been acted on if legitimate.
The new form itself is actually fairly straightforward, requiring you to fill in first your contact information, then details about the work being infringed, followed by details about the infringement and, after that, agreeing to the legal terms and signing the document. It should be very easy for someone to use, even if they do not have any experience filing takedown notices.
That being said, please remember that this form is considered live and that all DMCA notices sent through it are legally binding. Do not use this form unless you have a copyright infringement you wish to report.
Currently, the form is not linked anywhere on Hostgator’s site or TOS that I was able to find, however, I received permission from Hostgator to link to it here.
So, if you have a DMCA complaint to file against Hostgator, this is now probably the fastest and most direct way to send it. Though I haven’t had cause to use it yet, early reports are that response time is quick and fair.
If you have any experiences with this form, or Hostgator in general, please feel free to leave a comment below with your thoughts.