Jotform, a handy web service that powers hundreds of thousands of web forms for websites, was unexpectedly shut down at the domain level by it’s domain management provider GoDaddy this week. Godaddy did not provide an explanation as to why the service was interrupted, beyond the explanation that it was part of an investigation.
It turns out that the Secret Service requested that Godaddy shut down Jotform suddenly and without due process. Godaddy complied. It appears that Government agencies and Godaddy are acting as if SOPA has passed. This is essentially a seizure of property without due process, and the seizure took place merely during an investigation.
Ultimately this act affected thousands of businesses in the US that rely on Jotform as a service provider. Because of Jotform’s popularity, the case received immediate media attention, and a number of excellent publications discussed the case including Arstechnica, Wired, CNET, Techdirt, Forbes, Geek.com and TheNextWeb.
Jotform’s service was turned back on, but their business will be seriously affected as a result of the incident. This US company will need to work hard to restore confidence and win back business.