Frequently Asked Questions - Why Can't We Have Access to Source Files?

Can We FTP to the website?

Yes, to certain sections of the site. We do give access to subdomains like test.<your-domain>.com or web user accounts like www.<your-domain>.com/~<your-user>/. Web user accounts are mostly used for Chapter websites for non-profit organizations.

[Why Can't We Have Access to Source Files?] Why Can't We Have Access to Source Files?     Why Can't We FTP to the Main Site?

As a business decision, we do not give access to the main website. Some of the business reasons why we don't give access include:

  • We retain the copyright to our work, and our source code is our intellectual property. We use many design and programming elements for all our sites, and we do not give that away. If an entity has access to the main website, they have access to our source code. (Now if some company were to make a very generous acquisition offer $$,$$$,$$$, we'd be glad to share.)
  • Would you share your business or organization's competitive advantage? Would you give away customer lists, donor lists, proprietary know-how, expertise, pricing information, recipies/ingredients, techniques?     If you replaced your caterer or favorite restaurant, would you expect them to give you their recipes?     A famous business case reported in the Wall Street Journal discusses how in the late 1970's, Coca-Cola left the country of India after refusing to partner with an Indian company and hand over its secret ingredients. It returned in 1993 after India liberalized its economy.
  • Third parties can mess up the code. Over ten years ago we did allow a few customers to edit the main website, and had plenty of problems with version control (who updated what and when). We also have had to clean up code, or start from scratch when a third-party edited a web page in a software program that rendered it unreadable to us. We also have examples from competitors who had malicious third parties essentially deface a website that was under their management.
  • The most common request is to add Google Analytics, which doesn't need third party access. See the next section below.

What if my Search Engine Optimization (SEO) consultants says they need access to the main site?

They do not need access. They likely want the following changes:

  1. To specify words for the metatags that are used by search engines. Just email us what they want. An example for Baywalk is below:
    • Description example: Baywalk Marketing and Baywalk Marketing in southern California. We serve small business and non-profit clients. Please see our online portfolio.
    • Abstract example: Baywalk Marketing and Baywalk Marketing in southern California. We serve small business and non-profit clients.
    • Keywords example: baywalk, marketing, web design, web development, web hosting, internet promotion, internet marketing, seo, search engine optimization, sem, search engine marketing
  2. To insert code for Google Analytics. Just email us the code snippet and we will insert in our global PHP insert file which will put the code on every page of your site automatically. See a code example below:
    <script type="text/javascript">
       var _gaq = _gaq || [];
       _gaq.push(['_setAccount', 'RO-T723R53~~~~~']);
       (function() {
         var ga = document.createElement('script'); ga.type =
    'text/javascript'; ga.async = true;
         ga.src = ('https:' == document.location.protocol ? 'https://ssl' :
    'http://www') + '';
         var s = document.getElementsByTagName('script')[0];
    s.parentNode.insertBefore(ga, s);
       })(); </script>
  3. To verify that we are using the title tag and H1 header tag to note each web page's main topic. We do. For example: This web page's header tag is "Frequently Asked Questions - Why Can't We Have Access to Source Files?"

What is FTP?

Please our FAQ on What is FTP?.