|“Sorry... The owner of this group has banned you from this group.” This initially mislead me to believe it was a one-group thing.|
|“Forbidden. Your client does not have permission to get URL / from this server.” Slight problem: Most of the resources for figuring out what went wrong are on exactly this server.|
The root of the problemThe problem is a tricky one: Google offers most of its services for free and is faced with a lot of spam. Hence, to save costs, they have to automate and don’t employ many people in support. That is, you get what you paid for. On the other hand, many people use those services for critical data which they can’t afford to lose. Thus, Google has a lot of responsibility which it doesn’t always live up to (and probably can’t, cost-wise). It comes down to the rule:
Be sure that you are in control of content that is important to you.For example, by constantly backing up or by storing your content offline and only pushing it to Google .
Trying to fix the problemThere is no direct solution, so I've tried indirect ones:
- Disable autoresponder: this leads to Google checking if the account has been blocked due to too many posts made via email. Some people have successfully (ab)used this to get unbanned.
- Feedback about Google Accounts: One step higher up the Google chain, this is one of the few generic options for getting in contact with Google. I left a note.
- I sent a fax to Google Inc.: Yes, there was real paper involved.
- I gave feedback on the GG help site (which obviously was negative).
- [2009-03-26] At least I haven't lost money: “Google is Evil, Worse than PayPal: Don't use Google Checkout for your business”.
- [2011-10-18] I finally got my access back. After three years! And only via a contact at Google.
- [2011-04-14] “How I lost access to my Google account today” by Ehsan Akhgari.