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Gamefan network tanks

Scott Wasson
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You may be wondering… Where’s Voodoo Extreme? Beyond3D? A number of excellent and popular sites were pretty much yanked off the web yesterday morning when the Gamefan advertising network pulled the plug on its hosting services with very little notice. Ad networks often provide hosting services as part of the package, and Gamefan delivered the full monty: they weren’t paying their affiliates, and they took down their sites. Here’s a bit of the letter Gamefan sent out on about 6AM this past Friday (from a post at Evil Avatar):

Dear GameFan Network Associate:

We regret to inform you that Express.com will no longer be offering the courtesy of hosting services to its GameFan Network Associates. We have found that this service can no longer be supported under our business model, and we will do whatever we can within reason to facilitate any transitional requirements.

The timing for this is as soon as possible, and is to occur no later than Monday, October 2, 2000. To be clear, any GameFan Network Associate site that has not been moved off Genuity
servers by 11:59 PM October 2nd will effectively be shut down, so it is critical that you take independent action to retrieve and independently procure hosting provider for your site(s).

Finding a new hosting provider and moving a site over the course of a weekend is a tall order, especially when a DNS transfer with NetSol or the like is involved. Up and moving a database-driven site like Voodoo Extreme isn’t a trivial operation, either. So it’s no great surprise that some of the 40 or so Gamefan sites didn’t make the transition in time.

Gamers.com was able to corner the PR man for Express.com, which recently merged with Gamefan, for an interview. Check this out:

Gamers.com : Why was such short notice (i.e. on a Friday, two days to find a new host) given to hosted sites?

Wool: Express.com worked hard to find and contract advertisers so that we could generate the kind of monies necessary to run that business, but were not successful. We ultimately had to expedite this decision after one of our larger advertisers unexpectedly pulled out.

Uh huh. And they couldn’t keep a server online another day or two? These guys have serious problems.

I’d expect to see most of the Gamefan sites back online with other hosting and sponsorship deals before too long. Rumors are flying about the fate of VE in particular, but I don’t know enough to speculate. You’ve gotta think they’ll wind up in a decent situation one way or another.

Oh, and Dave Barron, if you’re reading this, please mail me. I can’t go too long without my Beyond3D fix.

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