Oakley Studio – Terms of Service

This document in it’s entirety serves to define our client/vendor relationship. We hope you will view our relationship as a “Strategic Partnership” that benefits your business in a variety of ways and contributes to its flourishing. At Oakley Studio, nothing makes us happier than to see you succeed by every measure that matters to you. We hope to provide our expertise and assist in your success for years to come.

This Terms of Service document is an agreement between Oakley Studio, LLC (referenced with terms such as “Oakley Studio”, or “your webmaster”, or “we”, or “us”, or “our”) and each of our Clients (referenced using terms such as “client”, or “you”, or “your”, or “your business”, or “your organization”, or “your team”).

 

Our Services

Oakley Studio, LLC is a “website property management” firm, which means we manage all our client’s online assets:

  • Domain Name Registrations, Transfers, and Renewals
  • Domain Records Management: ownership, privacy, identity, verifications, namespaces, services, and routing
  • Website Setup, Site Migrations, and Secure Managed Website Hosting
  • Professional Domain Name Email, and Webmail
  • Commercial Software License Management

These are valuable assets for any business. We manage their security and performance for the benefit of our clients.

Oakley Studio’s primary service is Managed WordPress Website Hosting. We provision, maintain, and upgrade the servers that host our client websites. We manage domain name registrations, transfers, renewals, and zone records. We provision our client’s domain name email service. We are responsible for the day-to-day maintenance of networked servers, periodic updates to server operating systems and web server hosting software and hardware.

We manage and maintain powerful cloud-based web servers, and we utilize redundant high-speed always-on network connectivity that meets or exceeds industry standards in order to deliver excellent and reliable service. As your website traffic grows over time, we focus on provisioning ample computation, memory, and storage resources so that your website is never limited by processor, space, or bandwidth constraints.

 

Asset Ownership

We recognize that your domain name and your website will always belong to and be owned by you or your incorporated business entity, and never possessed or owned by Oakley Studio. Your domain name and website are valuable assets of your business, and we manage their security and performance on your behalf. You or your corporation will be the Registrant of Record on your domain name, and Oakley Studio will be your Admin, Technical, and Billing Contacts. We will periodically check with you to determine whether your Registrant data needs updating. You are responsible for informing Oakley Studio whenever there is a change to your personal or corporate name, your legal mailing address, or your contact phone number and email address. We are required to keep your Registrant data current in order for you to maintain legal ownership of these assets and avoid any loss.

 

Managed Website Hosting: A “Package” of Services

We provide our primary website hosting as a “package” of bundled services for a monthly price. Review our Pricing page for our current Website Package prices. All Oakley Studio Website Packages consist of the following provisioned services:

Domain Name Management – Oakley Studio will register, transfer, and renew domains on your behalf. We guarantee that that your domain name will never expire for as long as it is under our care. The cost of renewals is included with your website hosting. We provide Registrant of Record privacy service so that only Oakley Studio, our Partner Registrar, and permitted governing bodies (ICANN) have access to your personal or corporate identity data. Our privacy service prevents third parties from sending you unwanted solicitations — “spam” — via email, phone, or direct mail. We also manage your domain name records, adding, modifying and  removing records to provide all the online services your business requires. Your domain is the control center for your online business identity, privacy, ownership, namespaces, branding, and routing.

Daily WordPress Site Updates – Oakley Studio knows that every business owner has more than enough to do. So we do the essential daily technical maintenance chores to ensure that all your site’s software components (Plugins, Themes, and the WordPress framework) are kept up to date and secure. As updates are released, we install them, every day. Quite often these are security updates that address and fix known vulnerabilities as they are discovered. We consider this our most important task. Timely installation of security updates helps ensure your website will never be hacked. In our experience, it is the un-updated WordPress sites that are at greatest risk of malicious hacker attacks. This service is included with your website hosting.

“Staging” Websites – Oakley Studio provides both “Staging” and “Live” website hosting. You will always have a Staging site where you can try out, install, configure, and test available Plugins and Themes in order to assess their suitability for use, prior to implementing them on your Live site. A Staging site is especially useful for initial design, development and build-out of your website prior to official Launch. At your request, we will clone your Staging site to our Live production server when it’s ready to Launch. Also at your request we will clone your existing Live site back to Staging in order to temporarily “synchronize” it with the content, database, and configuration of your Live site. Your Staging site is included with your website hosting.

SSH, SCP, and SFTP Access – For clients who wish to have file-level access to website contents stored on our servers, we will provide login credentials and server names so that you may, at your discretion, download, upload, edit, add to, or remove any files as necessary in the course of managing your own website.

Daily Automated Backups – We provide automated daily website backups, and the capability to restore your site from backup, as needed, any time, at your request. We maintain up to 90 days of archived website backups so you have plenty of restore points to draw upon. Included with your website hosting.

Weekly Server “Snapshot” Backups – We perform manual backups of all our servers every week. We maintain these server “snapshots” for at least one year. This allows us to recover an entire server from up to 52 restore points. We also use our server “snapshots” whenever we upgrade any of our servers to newer/faster hardware and storage. Included with your website hosting.

Monthly Security Audits – Oakley Studio checks all your site’s components each month against a database of known vulnerabilities, so that we can be proactive in replacing any orphaned/abandoned insecure components with secure alternatives. Included with your website hosting.

Akismet Spam Protection – We use our Oakley Studio Akismet license to provide spam protection for all our client sites. This prevents spam postings in comments and in forums. Akismet is included with your website hosting.

Professional Domain Name Email Service – Using professional domain name email is the first and best way to establish your brand identity on the web. You are promoting your domain name with every email you send. You may forward your domain name email to a Gmail account, and configure your favorite email app on your phone, tablet, laptop or desktop computer. Our website packages include up to 5 domain name email addresses. (Additional addresses available for a low monthly fee.)

Webmail Portal – Our Webmail service is included with your website hosting, and is the simplest way to send and receive email messages using your domain name email address. Webmail is also where you may configure forwarding and password reset options. Additional features include Address Book for Contacts, Calender, and Calendar Sharing for all the members of your team.

SSL/TLS Digital Certificates – All Oakley Studio website packages include end-to-end industry-standard encryption using digital certificates for all incoming and outgoing website connections. We provide, install, and manage renewal of your digital certificates at no additional cost. We believe privacy for our clients and their site visitors is of utmost importance.

Dedicated DNS Service – At Oakley Studio we believe that DNS service is critical to speedy web page delivery. Nearly all DNS servers provided by registrars are overloaded and overtaxed. They are slow and vulnerable to spikes in traffic that can bring them down. When that happens, your website may temporarily become unavailable. We address these glaring issues by providing our own dedicated DNS service on our cloud-based servers, included with your website hosting.

Four Name Servers – Oakley Studio provides four name servers while most domain registrars provide only two. Our DNS name servers are distributed across three top-level domains (.com, .net, and .org) and across multiple continents (US and UK) for the greatest possible redundancy. Included with your website hosting.

“Silo” Website Security – Our secure server infrastructure provides username-level security for every website. No one has access to sites except those assigned to their username/login. In the unlikely event that a hacker manages to gain admin access to a client site, they would have no access to other parts of the server or other websites. This advanced server security is included with your website hosting.

Ecom Checkout Testing – Whenever the software components of your online sales process require updating, we install and test. We also completely test your site’s checkout process to ensure it is working properly following a software update. This ecom testing service is included with your website hosting.

Traffic Reports – We use on-server log analysis to provide the most complete reporting of your website’s traffic. Reports are updated hourly. These reports provide insight into how many visitors are viewing your website, how many pages they view, which pages they view, where they are coming from, what computer OS and browser they are using, and in some cases the search terms they used to arrive at your site. Our reports are useful for monitoring current advertising campaigns and related marketing activity.

Personalized Technical Support – Your Oakley Studio webmaster is a strategic partner in your business. We want to get to know your business and understand your online business processes so we can serve you better. We recognize the trust you place in us, and we promise that any information you share with us about your business will be kept in absolute privacy.

We will never charge you for initiating a support request. We’re always available to answer a question or provide advice or recommendations, and we provide this support freely at no charge. You may call, text or email your webmaster any time. If we can’t pick up the phone when you call, please leave a message and we will get back to you as quickly as possible. Our target response time is within four hours.

It is almost unheard of for any company these days to provide free technical support. Oakley Studio has been doing so since our founding in 1996, and we hope to always be able to provide you with free technical support. We define technical support as “answering questions, providing advice, and making recommendations.” To deliver excellent technical support, we will research, investigate, and communicate at no cost to our clients.

Additional Services – Other fee-based services may be added to your monthly Website Package. Examples of such services include:

  • Additional domain names that redirect to the primary website.
  • Additional “parked” (unused) domains.
  • Additional websites.
  • Additional domain name email accounts.

 

Month-to-Month Ongoing Service

Our primary Managed WordPress Website Hosting service described above is a package of bundled services for a set monthly price. The package price is based on each website’s average monthly data rate, also known as “average daily data transfer” or “average bandwidth.” These terms are defined below.

Hosting Levels

We offer nine levels of managed website hosting. As websites gain more traffic, we may move them to faster servers, newer servers, larger servers or servers with a smaller number of shared hosting sites. Sites at Level 8 and Level 9 are hosted on their own dedicated servers, managed by your webmaster. As a website’s traffic naturally increases — through your normal efforts to advertise, position, and promote your business — the site “levels up” to our next tiered level of service.

Your website’s Hosting Level is based on it’s “Average Bandwidth” over the course of the previous full month of hosting, as measured by your Traffic Reports. When your website’s traffic increases beyond the threshold data rate for your current hosting level, it “graduates” to the next higher hosting level. Your hosting level will never increase more than one Level at a time. Even if you run a huge ad campaign and your site’s traffic goes through the roof, your site will only “level up” to the next higher tier. This is how Oakley Studio is able to provide managed website hosting at an attractive cost that any small business can afford. We expect your business to succeed. We hope our tiered hosting encourages you to market and promote your website as much as you can, because that’s good for your business!

In the unlikely event that your average bandwidth decreases for a period of three months or more, Oakley Studio may, at your request, reassign your website to a lower Hosting Level.

 

Invoiced Services

In addition to our “bundled package” of services described above, your webmaster is also available for coaching and training sessions so that website owners are equipped to utilize all the features of their WordPress Dashboard and able to perform many of the functions that will make your website, and your business, successful over time. Your webmaster can also provide “hands-on” technical services in order to install, configure, and test new functionality on your website, or assist with custom design or technical modifications to existing site processes. These services are billed by the hour, and invoiced separately from your ongoing monthly hosting service.

Coaching and Training

We love teaching our clients how to get the most out of their website, especially as it applies to their normal ongoing (often daily) business processes. Your WordPress Dashboard is the control center for your online business. It’s where you add resources to your Media library; install and configure new functionality via Plugins; and customize your site’s Theme. Your Dashboard is also where you create new content (blog posts, menu pages, landing pages, forms, pop-ups, and downloads) and communicate with visitors coming to your website. If you sell products and services through your ecommerce website, your Dashboard is where you configure items for sale and process orders. Each of these activities requires a familiarity with the available tools and processes, which your webmaster can help you understand through scheduled coaching and training. We provide hourly coaching sessions, in person or via online videoconference with screensharing. See our Pricing page for current Coaching and Training rates. We offer a “package” discount on our training when you schedule and pay for four sessions in advance.

Hands-On Technical and Design Services

From time to time it may be necessary for your webmaster to install and configure software in order to provide the services your business requires. We charge hourly for our “hands-on” technical services. Our current hourly rates can be found on our Pricing page. We can install configure, and test Plugins for you. We are also happy to provide CSS-based design customizations of your site’s Theme on an as-needed basis. These design and technical services will be invoiced separately from your ongoing monthly website hosting.

Plugin Conflicts

In rare instances, our daily Plugin & Theme updates may cause your site to become “white screened” or otherwise unavailable. Sometimes this is caused by “Plugin conflicts,” which may be difficult to diagnose. We are usually able to immediately restore your website from the most recent daily backup. Following any such incident we will consult with you on how to proceed. We charge hourly for any further “hands-on” work required on the part of your webmaster to restore your website to full functionality.

Site Misconfiguration

In rare instances, you may inadvertently configure your site in such a way that it is rendered unreachable. Please alert your webmaster as soon as you become aware of your site’s condition, so that we can immediately assist with recovery. We will charge hourly for our time and expertise for site recovery.

Unauthorized Access

Oakley Studio sincerely hopes your website will never be hacked, and we perform our duties diligently to prevent unauthorized access. Given the wiles of intelligent and malicious hackers, we are not able to guarantee your site will never be hacked… But we are are your first line of defense in the unlikely event that it should ever happen. We charge hourly for our time to restore a hacked website to normal secure functioning.

Commercial Licensing

Your website may utilize commercial Themes and Plugins that require a current license in order to receive updates. If we are unable to update your site’s components due to an expired license, we will consult with you on how to proceed. In some cases we may be able to provide a “developer license” at a substantially reduced annual cost. We charge hourly for our time to purchase and install licenses and to download and install commercial software packages.

Emergency Work

Our normal work hours are Monday through Friday from 9am to 5pm Mountain time. Not all website problems are immediately obvious, and websites don’t always break down during normal weekday business hours. When it becomes apparent that something is not working properly, your webmaster is prepared to work outside normal hours to get your site back “online” as quickly as possible. If this emergency work entails “hands-on” servicing, we will bill by the hour for our time and add an additional 25% surcharge to the total amount invoiced.

 

Client Responsibilities

Use of Oakley Studio’s “website property management” services entails specific responsibilities on the part of our clients, including acceptance and agreement to the Terms of Service described in this document. Failure to comply with our terms of service may, at the discretion of your webmaster, result in suspension or temination of service.

Strong Passwords

Strong passwords are your first and best defense against website hackers. Oakley Studio requires strong passwords for admin login to client websites as well as client login to OakleyStudio.com for access to some client services. Strong passwords include both upper- and lower-case characters, numbers, and other characters, and must not contain usernames or words found in a dictionary.

Paying for Monthly Service

Oakley Studio uses Automatic Monthly Billing by credit card in order to provide easy monthly payment and accounting for your ongoing website hosting. This “subscription” model allows us to bill your credit card each month for ongoing delivery of your website hosting and any additional monthly services. We use PayPal and Stripe for payment processing, and for secure PCI-compliant storage of all credit card data for repeat “subscription” usage. Oakley Studio does not collect, store, or transmit any credit card data; we rely on our payment processors and their vast cybersecurity experience to protect credit card data. Our credit card-based Automatic Monthly Billing helps ensure that funds are readily available to deliver uninterrupted hosting service without the need for you to pay in advance for an extended term of hosting service.

Payment for website hosting is due during the month that service is being delivered. The date of your monthly billing is the day of the month when you initially set up your Automatic Monthly Billing.

Automatic Monthly Billing allows our clients to select an appropriate “budget” threshold sufficient to cover all your provisioned monthly hosting services. If your chosen threshold budget is insufficient to cover your monthly hosting and related costs, we cancel your setup and advise you to choose a new higher-threshold budget for monthly billing. It is each client’s responsibility to choose a budget level that covers all their monthly package costs. Oakley Studio will only charge for the hosting level and related services that are delivered.

Every new Oakley Studio client website begins hosting at Level 1, our most affordable level of service. Your first month of “Staging” development website hosting is free, and your first month of “Live” production website hosting is also free.

If you prefer to pay in advance for six months or twelve months of monthly hosting, we can accommodate you by invoicing at the start of each term of service. You may pay by sending us a check in the mail, or you may pay securely online with a credit card using our Invoice Payment portal. We will invoice for advance monthly service in January and July of each year.

If you choose these advance payment options, it is your responsibility to ensure we receive payment for the full term (six months or twelve months) before close of the first month of delivered service. Failure to pay may entail an interruption in your monthly hosting service. Please understand this may have a deleterious impact on your business. Choosing the option to pay in advance is intended as a convenience to you, and does not entitle you to any discount on monthly hosting service. However, it does “lock in” your current hosting Level until the end of your current term. You may see some financial benefit if your website traffic increases during the term of your advance payment.

Invoicing and Non-Payment

Any “hands-on” hourly work performed by your webmaster on your behalf will be invoiced separately from your Automatic Monthly Billing. Invoices are delivered to you via email. Payment for all invoiced work is due by the due date marked on each invoice. Any non-payment of invoices may result in suspension of hosting service until payment is received. We hope this never happens, but we cannot continue to provide service if we are not being paid.

When an invice becomes overdue, we will send you a reminder via email. Oakley Studio will charge an additional $12.00 for each reminder sent. These additional “late fees” are non-negotiable. Remember: you can completely avoid all “late fees” by paying every invoice by it’s due date.

Our Anti-Spam Policy

“Spamming” is the sending of unsolicited bulk email to recipients who have not “opted-in” to your messaging. Spamming shall be understood to be any action that violates the provisions of the federal CAN-SPAM act. By law you must comply with these provisions by sending bulk email only to recipients who have chosen to opt-in to receive your messages. Failure to comply may result in suspension or termination of Oakley Studio services.

No Contracts

Oakley Studio does not offer any yearly or multi-year contracts for managed hosting service. We strive to provide an outstanding and dependable service so that you will remain our client for years to come. We want you to be completely satisfied with the service we provide. If for any reason you are not happy with Oakley Studio’s provision of services, please let us know, so that we have an opportunity to rectify the situation. If you no longer want or need our services you may take possession of your existing domain name(s) and website(s) and seek hosting elsewhere, at any time.

You are not “locked in” to monthly hosting you no longer want. We cannot refund any partial-month payment for undelivered hosting service, however we are happy to refund any advance payment for monthly hosting service that has not yet been delivered. We will never hold your website or your domain name “hostage” pending payment of any outstanding invoices.

On termination of service it remains your responsibility to pay Oakley Studio in-full for any unpaid invoiced work and delivered service. We will send you a final invoice to cover any necessary assistance you or a third party may require in order to transfer your domain and hosting to another provider. We will require that you pay any outstanding balance on your account with Oakley Studio. If you are unable to pay any unpaid or final invoices, we will work with you to arrange an agreeable payment plan so we may eventually obtain any money owed to Oakley Studio, and thereby conclude our business relationship as harmoniously as possible. If an adequate payment schedule cannot be arranged, we will use every legal means available — including collection agencies — to obtain money owed.

Voluntary Termination

We recognize that plans change, businesses do sometimes fail, and you may at some point no longer need our services. Though we’ll be sorry to see you go, we wish to settle accounts amicably and end our working relationship by wishing you the best of success in all your future endeavors.

Because we do not lock you into long-term contracts, you are free to terminate Oakley Studio service at will, at any time, for any reason. You may do so by informing us in writing by postal mail or email, or by text, or by phone, or in person.

Upon termination of service, we will unlock your domain and provide an Authorization Code to allow you or your assigns to transfer your domain name to another registrar. We will also send you a software package containing all the files and the database for your site, from the most recent daily backup.

Likewise, Oakley Studio has the right to terminate our client/vendor relationship if, at our discretion, we determine that you have violated our Terms of Service or you have refused to pay for Oakley Studio invoiced work or delivered services.

Strategic Partnerships

Oakley Studio builds on the work of other businesses. We view these businesses as “Strategic Partnerships,” each with their own expertise and a team of support technicians that Oakley Studio calls upon regularly in the normal course of business. As the tech landscape is rapidly evolving, we are always on the lookout for better ways to deliver excellent service at an affordable price. We may deem it necessary from time to time to “change horses” and switch to a different provider for some services. We do not make such changes frivolously, and our aim is always to provide the best possible services without jeopardizing security or performance.

Disclaimer of Warranty

You acknowledge and agree that Oakley Studio exercises no control over, and accepts no responsibility for, and is not liable for the content of your website, or the content of your email communications, or any data transferred either to or from you or stored by you or any of your customers via services provided by Oakley Studio. Neither Oakley Studio, it’s owner, webmaster, employees, affiliates, strategic partners, nor the like make any warranties of any kind, either expressed or implied, including, but not limited to, warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose, or non-infringement for the services Oakley Studio provides. Neither do we warrant that our services will not be interrupted or error-free. We make no warranty as to the results that may be obtained from the use of Oakley Studio services.

Indemnification

Oakley Studio and its Clients each agree to indemnify and hold harmless the other from and against any and all claims, loss, costs and expenses, including reasonable attorney’s fees, that may result from its own negligence except as expressly defined in this Terms of Service Agreement. Neither party will be liable to the other for any special, indirect or consequential damages.

Limitation of Liability

In no event shall Oakley Studio, it’s owner, webmaster, employees, affiliates, strategic partners nor the like be liable for any indirect, incidental, special, or consequential damages, or loss of profits, revenue, data or use, by you or any third party. This limitation of liability applies even if Oakley Studio has been advised of the possibility of such damages. In no event will Oakley Studio’s liability for any damages or losses exceed the actual dollar amount paid by for any service which gave rise to such damages or losses during the 12-month period prior to the date the damage or loss occurred.

Disputes

Where disputes arise related to this Terms of Service agreement, each party will use its best effort to resolve the dispute in an amicable and timely manner. Failing this, the dispute will be referred to an independent arbitration panel under the guidelines of teh American Arbitration Association, Washington DC.

Invalid Provisions and Governing Law

If any provision of this Terms of Service agreement is held invalid under applicable law, the balance of this agreement shall continue in full force and effect. This Terms of Service agreement shall be governed and construed either in accordance with the laws of the State of New Mexico where Oakley Studio bases its operations, or in accordance with the laws of the State of Indiana where our documents of incorporation reside.