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DRAMA FIRES: MaxKVM Blows Its Brand Up, LowEndTalk Moderators are Biased


MaxKVM posted a cryptic message on LowEndTalk yesterday:


Our global datacenter provider has limited core network access and is threatening early termination of our long term contract.

Please tell this company that you support free speech and ask them to resume full operations for MaxKVM”

The company they’re referring to is HiVelocity, who simply replied with a link to their TOS and a statement that “If anyone repeatedly violates them they are subject to termination”.  I infer that MaxKVM rents servers or networks or both from HiVelocy and resells KVMs, a very common arrangement.  (You might enjoy our previous interview with HiVelocity).

Other than a lot of drama about thread titles (more on that in a moment), that’s all that’s publicly known right now.  MaxKVM has been offline since April 23rd, apparently.

With this minimal set of facts, it’s still possible to draw some conclusions.

First, I took a gander at the HiVelocity terms of service, which seem very typical and reasonable to me.  Likewise, their AUP (same page, scroll up) is very typical.  These agreements usually boil down to “pay your bills, don’t break the law, don’t do these specific things we don’t allow, and you’re fine”.  I saw nothing in the HiVelocity TOS or AUP that was anti-free-speech, and indeed they even allow “legal adult content”.  From a free speech perspective, HiVelocity seems typical of American hosts: as long as it’s legal, we’ll host it.

To claim that they are being shut down for “free speech” reasons makes one think of government censorship or some kind of attack against minority opinions.  What free speech here is being stifled?  MaxKVM has not said.

Usually when a host gets in trouble, it’s about money, and this would be a way to “repeatedly violate” TOS.  LowEnd hosts often run on razor-thin margins and it doesn’t take much for a rash of frauds and chargebacks to swamp them.

A free speech issue would be trivial to document:

  • Here’s a web site about freedom fighters in somewhereistan or about how the flying spaghetti monster is the one true religion
  • Here is a message from our host saying they are terminating us because of that site

No such documentation has been provided.

Generally, the principle that extraordinary claims should require extraordinary proof has served humanity well.  Claiming that you’re being shut down for free speech reasons is such a claim.

Second, any such dispute is a MaxKVM issue.  The customer isn’t buying service from HiVelocity.  They’re buying it from MaxKVM and shouldn’t even need to know that HiVelocity exists.  It’s MaxKVM’s job to secure whatever resources are needed.

There was some drama on LET about a moderator changing the thread title.  We do that.  The original title was “FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE” and veteran mod @PieHasBeenEatern appended “MOVE YOUR DATA FROM MaxKVM”.

Here you have a host that has off-lined all of their customers’ services and been completely non-transparent about why that happened.  Can anyone say you shouldn’t move your data?




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