Lobais sends in the cautionary tale of a man who was locked out of Google Groups for three years — losing the ability to administer his own open source project in the process. "After about a year of using Google Groups for the PyChess project, I started [noticing] a problem. When I wrote mails to the list, no one would answer. And when I answered other peoples' post[s], they seamed to ignore them and press for new answers. As I tried to check the online group to see what was happening, I got a 403 Forbidden error. After a short while I realized that this error was given for any page on the groups.google.com subdomain. The lockout meant that I was unable to manage the PyChess mailing list. I was unable to fight increasing spam level, and more importantly I couldn't reply to anybody in my community. I wasn't even able to visit the Google help forums, which are all on groups.google.com. As the services are free of charge, I never really expected any support options. ... How can we know how often this kind of thing happens? If any admin can lock you out by a sloppy click, and give you no option to defend yourself, then it is bound to happen once in a while."
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