I created KnowNothing.Net seventeen ago (10-17-00). The original goal of the website was to teach the average home user how to secure their computer. At the time, attacks on personal computers were rampant. The main type of attacks were DoS (Denial of Service) based and mostly consisted of flooding people’s Internet connection. This website had links for downloading the patches for the major security vulnerabilities that existed in Windows 95 and 98SE (Second Edition). It also contained links to free software downloads.
Over time I started to purchase services on the Internet. Very quickly I found out that there were a lot of unscrupulous and diabolical con artists on the Internet. There were people out there advertising products and services but did not deliver what they promised. Unfortunately, there was not a whole lot that could be done, or so I thought. You could threaten a lawsuit but most just laughed and said to go ahead and sue them. Their mentality was that of individuals that had the time and money to spend on defending their selves in court. Heck, who would spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on an attorney to recover a measly $19.95?
It was at this time when I decided to start researching the law. I read very large amounts of information on consumer rights and consumer law. Finally, I reached a point to where I started fighting back. I learned of the BBB (Better Business Bureau), FTC (Federal Trade Commission), and the state-appointed Attorney General. Most importantly, though, I found the power of the Internet and that by using search engines I could find lots of other people that had issues with the same companies as I did.
Threatening to contact the BBB and other agencies as well as threatening to file a lawsuit in small claims court did not always work. That is when I decided to turn KnowNothing.Net in to a website where I would publish information that I knew about rip-off companies, individuals, and organizations. Every piece of information that I could find on the Internet about a company that would aid me in my research would be publicized as an “Investigative Report.” The end result is what you see before you.
I have had individuals threaten to sue me in the past. Some even threatened my hosting provider as well as my very livelihood (see threat here). Most notably is the con artist(s) from Premadewebsitetemplates.com (view Investigative Report). Thanks to the deceptive owner of Premadewebsitetemplates.com owner (Robert Mullaney), my hosting account was terminated by Histyle Internet Solutions (AKA iKiwi). The last hosting company I was with (Virtuoso Net Solutions) was a complete joke. The owner, Chad Abizeid, is a very childish and unprofessional individual that talks down to his customers and treats them like dirt.
Some might think that I’m a cynical person. That’s far from the truth. The fact of the matter is that more and more businesses are lacking the most basic of ethics. Businesses aren’t required to have ethics. That’s why they hire crooked attorneys that do their best to ensure that they don’t have to be held accountable for their actions. Another scapegoat is contracts. Businesses will quickly tell you that you agreed to pay that fee. Contracts are what help businesses sleep at night when they charge unjustifiable fees to customers.
I am a 36-year old male living in south Louisiana. I spend a large majority of my free time doing research. It is because of my need earlier in life to search for the most cost-effective ways of doing things that I know as much as I do about research. When you don’t have a lot of money you have to learn to do a lot of things on your own. This is what pushed me to learn HTML, PHP, and other web development techniques. I am glad that I have learned them, though. They have enabled me to be independent, not have to depend on others to do website work for me. In addition, my knowledge of web design has saved me a great deal of money by not having to pay someone to do the work for me.
I have extensive knowledge of computers and the law (in particular, consumer law). I obtained all of this knowledge by researching on my own. The Internet is full of information. You just have to have the will and drive to go out there and find it. Too many people give up too easily. I believe that many people don’t fight for their rights because they are not well-informed about them.
I am described by different people in different ways. Those that understand my work consider me a persistent person that never gives up. Those that fear me (because they are unethical and don’t like persistent people such as myself) or envy me consider me a person that whines about everything. These types of people expect those that get ripped off to just suck it up, move on, and not tell anyone about it. If you tell anyone about it then you are “whining” or “crying.” Such people that have this mentality need to grow up. If you don’t like what someone says then go elsewhere. No one twists your arm to visit my website or any other website where a person voices their opinion. If you want to make a comment and state your opinion, then do so. However, do not belittle others that do the same. I believe the term for that is hypocrisy.