The .BLOG domain registry, Knock Knock Whois There (get it?), has released a promotional video for the new .BLOG domain extension with Matt Mullenweg.
Matt Mullenweg is best known for creating the most popular blogging software and content management system (CMS) on the planet WordPress. Millions of websites run on WordPress, including this one, and the usage keeps growing every year.
Later this month .BLOG domains will be available for anyone to register. The video is meant to show why .BLOG is a good choice for people who want to build an online presence.
You can watch the video with Matt Mullenweg and the read transcript below.
Why .blog? Matt Mullenweg
I think the phenomenon of blogging took everyone by surprise. I mean the internet kind of grew up on .COM, but the downsides are it's fairly generic it doesn't really say anything, and it also feels to be a little bit dated. That's kind of connected with Web 1.0.
So what we are seeing with a lot of the initial interest in .BLOG and even some of the people that are switching as we launch it, is that people are taking something .COM and going to something shorter .BLOG.
The blog has expanded from almost like personal journals to really sort of indicating like a more interesting website. In the world where everyone is a publisher on Facebook, Twitter, WordPress, etc. more businesses are starting to realize that that conversation that happens in the comments of the Instagram photo or people tagging each other. Often what drives a lot of the value now, it is a conversation it is social, but you're not going to build the next big thing purely on someone else's domain.
You need to have your own domain, you know. Example.blog, and .BLOG is great because it's short, it's easy to remember, it's easy to say, means something to people and it's gonna be brand new. It's almost like 500 years ago if everyone in the world had their own printing press and could publish as much as they want. That is the opportunity we have today.
Whatever your passion is, I would say, there has never been a better time to pursue it and talk about it and share it. Because other people that are passionate about the same thing now have the opportunity to find you.
250,000 .BLOG Domains?
Knock Knock Whois There and Matt Mullenweg, which is a subsidiary of Automattic, believes they can achieve 250,000 .BLOG registrations this year. That means with only a few weeks to go this year they would need to have around 4,000 – 5,000 registrations per day on average to get 250,000 domain registrations. Is this possible? I am doubtful but… we will see.
Many have noted that the fact that Matt Mullenweg and WordPress have a reach that is unmatched by any new domain company. Wordpress is now the underlying platform for around 25% of websites worldwide. They do have a marketing reach which will be hard for others in the new domain space to compete with.
Matt Mullenweg has said he believes that the domain business will be quite profitable for Automattic, the company behind WordPress, as well. It could end up being an “$100 million” dollar a year business. That could happen but my feeling is it would take 20 + years to reach that level of revenue for Automattic.
In addition .BLOG is not only competing against the established “Big Three” .COM, .NET, and .ORG. They also are competing against other new domain extensions jockeying for users and country code top level domains (ccTLDs) which are more popular in foreign markets. For instance in the United Kingdom .UK registrations are over 10 million. This is why Nominet, the .UK registry, was chosen as the technical backend for the .BLOG domain extension.
New Domains NOT Good for an Online Presence
I seriously disagree with the idea that new domains are a good route for people or companies building an online presence. Still I believe discourse about the new .BLOG domain is healthy. 🙂
I completely agree with Mullenweg when he said, “You need to have your own domain.” I'm not sure about comparing new domains to having your own printing press 500 years ago. Wordpress's mission is to “Democratize Publishing” and I would say that they have done an great job at that.
If you choose to go with a .BLOG domain, you are really limiting your site to being well… a blog. Often times when I've worked with clients on SEO we remove the blog section of the website. Why? They are not updating enough. We replace it with a section called “Articles” or something along those lines.
Right now I am setting up a local business. I am using .COM domain for this business and guess what? I don't want to blog. Why? Too time consuming for this business and I wouldn't generate enough ideas. I will write articles, I will do SEO, and I will do marketing. I will not be blogging. Many business owners feel the same way.
In Matt Mullenweg's annual State of The Word address, where he talks about the current state of WordPress, he's repeatedly said he wants WordPress to be known as a platform good for any website. Wordpress is still widely considered “blogging software”. In fact WordPress is quite flexible now for community websites, ecommerce, businesses, etc.
With Automattic and Mullenweg pushing the .BLOG domain, it only reinforces the “blogging software” label. All the marketing is going to only sway public opibion in the wrong direction. Something Automattic and WordPress has been fighting for years.
.BLOG Pricing and Drops
Considering .BLOG domains will retail for $30 + US dollars I have a feeling this will happen.
- Person buys .BLOG domain
- They use WordPress.com (free) or WordPress.org (self-hosted)
- They write 3-5 blog posts
- Try to get traffic, shares, and comments
- Not successful with blogging
- Go back to using Social Media
- Abandon blogging
- Domain renewal comes up… they drop the .BLOG domain
Most domain registrars are going to be selling .BLOG domains for more than $30 dollars. If you are not blogging on your .BLOG domain… why pay for it? Therefore Automattic might sell a lot of .BLOG domains but renewal rates… those are going to be low.
I wonder if any domain registrars will drop support for .BLOG? NameCheap stop support for .XYZ domains, so anything could happen.
And this statement…. “I mean the internet kind of grew up on .COM, but the downsides are it's fairly generic it doesn't really say anything, and it also feels to be a little bit dated.” I disagree but hey he wants to promote .BLOG domains. I noticed all the first .BLOG websites that WordPress has are all using WordPress.com nameservers. So that's dated? 🙂
What are your thoughts about this .BLOG promotional video? Do you see Automattic being successful with .BLOG domains?