WordPress Joins Google As An Official Domain Register

Despite their partnership with GoDaddy, it looks like Automattic (the company behind WordPress.com) has been granted status as a domain register by ICANN.

As some folks have noticed alreadyAutomattic is now a “real” domain registrar (ID #1531). This has been a goal of mine for several years now, chiefly because I am a bit of a domain collector myself and I’ve never been completely satisfied with the domain buying or management experience on any of the usual players. Second, custom domains are a popular feature on WordPress.com and should become even more popular with some changes we’re introducing this month and it’ll be good to be able to provide a fully integrated experience for our users there. It’ll be a few months while we build all the tools necessary to begin taking advantage of our registrar status so in the meantime we’ll continue to use Godaddy, who has been an excellent partner. (Matt Mullenweg, founder of WordPress).

Automattic joins Google (the latter who owns Blogger) as an official domain register which should give the company some extra leverage over rivals like Squarespace as well as Say Media’s Typepad.

Depending on their prices, domain registration could potentially provide WP.com with yet another major revenue stream outside of WordPress VIP, various premium services and VaultPress (the latter which is still currently in beta).

It’s still unclear as to which domain extensions Automattic will be able to register (aside from the .com, .net and .org tLD’s), although hopefully the company will be able to expand its reach into international extensions like .co, .uk or .wp (note: joking on the last one!).

(Image Credit: Norebbo)

Gravatar.com Site Gets Updated, Video Released

The Automattic owned avatar service Gravatar.com got a much needed site refresh just recently, and an introductionary video for you to show off to your visitors, or anyone not really getting the global recognizable avatar concept. Since Gravatar.com is integrated in just about every WordPress theme these days, you might think that the video is a bit redundant, but the service supports a lot of other platforms as well. Check out the refreshed website and the blog post that talks about everything but just the new site.

WordPress launches WP.me shorturls for WordPress hosted blogs

WordPress logoThe Automattic has announced the launch of wp.me shorturls for WordPress.com hosted blogs. According to Matt Mullenweg the wp.me shorturl is different from other services such as tiny.url or tr.im who had their 5 minutes of fame last week.

  • WP.me is the only two-letter .me domain in the world
  • Every blog and post on WordPress.com has a WP.me URL now
  • These are all exposed in the using rel=shortlink
  • It doesn’t work for any URL in the world, just WP.com-hosted ones
  • The links are permanent, they will work as long as WordPress.com is around
  • WP.me is spam-free, because we are constantly monitoring and removing spam from WP.com

Other than the restriction of only being available to WP.com users, WP.me sounds like pretty much any other shorturl service to me. Most bloggers will not care about the rel="shortlink" code in the header nor will most users bother thinking long term if their links will still work in a year. But all credits to the Automattic team to cover most angles for their users and keep adding services to their platform, making WP.com better and better on an almost daily base.

TalkPress: The Forum Revisited and Revitalized


Recently, Sam Bauer announced TalkPress, the of .

With the power of the WordPress Community behind it, could TalkPress ignite the fire under forums?

WordPress.com has been an incredible success with millions of bloggers registering millions of blogs and having their chance to blog free, or for a small fee for some services. Blog topics range from personal and private to politics and raising social consciousness. Some WordPress.com blogs have become popular and even famous, such as Robert Scoble and icanhascheezburger.

As a hosting company, WordPress.com hosts some of the largest websites and blogs in the world including icanhascheezburger, CNN news sites including Political Ticker, the Dow Jones’ All Things D, GretaWire, Time’s The Page, People Magazine’s Style Watch, and more. These companies provide the revenue to keep the free blog hosting services rocking and prove that WordPress has the strength and capabilities to support serious demands from users and servers. [Read more…]

Wired Drops TypePad, Moves To WordPress

Now this is a huge feather in the already pretty feather-heavy WordPress hat: Wired switches from TypePad to WordPress.

We’ve switched content platforms to WordPress, which should allow for all kinds of widgety fun and games as we move our stuff into the new place and figure out where to hang things.

While at it, the Wired blogs have also gotten something of a facelift to “bring all the Wired blogs into closer sync with the main site, and with the magazine”, which sounds like a good idea.

Naturally, the WordPress Publisher Blog is reporting this, and so is Automattican Matt Mullenweg and Toni Schneider. Six Apart owns the TypePad service, and I bet they are a bit pissed that Wired didn’t go for Movable Type instead.

What Automattic Should Do With WP.com


I’m happy to see that Automattic has been able to acquire WP.com, from Yahoo incidentally, who also sold the blo.gs domain to the creators of WordPress and Akismet not so long ago. Matt is thrilled, and rumor has it* that he spent a full day just typing in wp.com and watching it resolve to wordpress.com (*not confirmed).

Naturally, he blogged it as well, on the WordPress.com blog, asking the world what they should do with the new domain, and urging people to make suggestions in the comments.

My reaction to that: Whaaat?!?!

Are you mad? [Read more…]

Yahoo Treats Automattic To The blo.gs Domain

Matt Mullenweg has announced that Automattic will be giving blo.gs, a ping service of yore, a refresh:

Yahoo! is transferring blo.gs to Automattic for safekeeping and further development. I’ve been a long-time fan of the service, and it even inspired the early WordPress feature which reordered your blogroll based on update times.

Classy move on Yahoo’s part, who obviously have no use for it.

DOS Attack Brought Down WordPress.com Blogs

A Denial of Service attack brought down some WordPress.com blogs yesterday, including VIP hosted hotshots like the GigaOM network. The only obvious communication that I could find about this matter was a tweet linking to a blog post about DOS attacks in general, and the actual one in particular, also written by a WordPress.com team representative. Barry wraps up:

We keep hourly traffic metrics and based on those numbers, it looks like during the attack there was about a 5% decrease in overall pageviews during the 40 minutes before traffic was re-routed. All things considered, not a bad outcome for an attack this size. Looking at bandwidth graphs, this attack was in the 500Mbit – 750Mbit/sec range.

That might very well be true, and I can’t say that Automattic didn’t do a good job managing the attack. I do think that the communication with users were poor. For a company into blogging, and a service hosting blogs, I’m surprised to see that the DOS attack isn’t even mentioned on the official blog. I hope Automattic learns to communicate better in the future, because this is just not good enough.

Automattic Nabs PollDaddy, Releases WordPress Plugin


The latest item on Automattic’s shopping list is PollDaddy, the hosted poll solution that apparently have served 195 million votes over some 1 million polls to date. The two man operation have joined Automattic, and PollDaddy polls are now hosted in the new owner’s powerful datacenter. Good for the stability of the service.

Matt Mullenweg explains why Automattic acquired PollDaddy:

As we started to look at building out our own service for this, it became more obvious that, while on the surface it’s a very simple problem, there’s a lot of hidden complexity and opportunities for some really powerful features under the hood. There are probably a dozen companies addressing this space right now, but as we started to survey the space I was struck by how often I’d see this “PollDaddy” thing pop up.

PollDaddy is now a part of the WordPress.com service, detailed here, and also available in a plugin for hosted WordPress installs. That adds to the current support of embedding polls, something that won’t change. [Read more…]

WordPress Wednesday News: WordCamps Everywhere, WordPress 2.7 Wireframes, Intense Debate, Theme Improvements, and More


WordCamps are everywhere! WordPress 2.7 preview of the Administration Panels and interface wireframes released but not final. Theme changes in WordPress 2.7 will improve comments by design and code. Automattic buys Intense Debate for the comment power. WordPressMU updated. WordPress.com stats out. And more WordPress and WordCamp news and events.

WordPress News

WordPress 2.7 Wireframes: Jane Wells revealed the WordPress 2.7 Wireframes, the graphic draft versions being tested for the development of the new WordPress 2.7 and future version Administration Panels and interface. A work-in-process, the PDF files are going around the web and serve as guides not final versions of the interface. These are constantly in fluctuation as testing and updates are ongoing.

WordPress Theme Changes in WordPress 2.7 Comments: Otto of Ottodestruct covers the changes in WordPress 2.7 comments that may impact some WordPress Themes. While older WordPress Themes will continue to work but WordPress 2.7 includes some new features WordPress Theme designers need to know. They include creating a WordPress 2.7 compatible comments.php template file, changes in the comments loop, password protection checks, AJAX, and style changes. Some of the improvements and features explained are subject to change as WordPress 2.7 nears release.
[Read more…]