WordPress Unveils Plans for .Blog, the New gTLD that Cost it $19M

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WordPress parent company Automattic bought the rights to the new gTLD .blog last year for $19 million, beating Google and a handful of other companies in the auction.

Companies with a trademark can register a .blog starting in August, and then October is the land-rush period.

On Thursday Automattic CEO Matt Mullenweg said in a blog post: “It’s now public that Automattic is the company behind Knock Knock Whois There LLC, the registry for the new .blog TLD. (And a great pun.) We wanted to stay stealth while in the bidding process and afterward in order not to draw too much attention, but nonetheless the cost of the .blog auction got up there (people are estimating around $20M).”

SEE ALSO: WordPress.com Secures Millions of Domains with Free, Automatic HTTPS

.Blog domains will be available from WordPress.com or through one if its partner domain name registrars.

Mullenweg told VentureBeat in an interview that it worked with Primer Nivel in the auction process in order to conceal its identity; “But there could be an incentive for other bidders if they knew it was us, and we’d just raised funding, that they would try to drive the price up. It was right after we did our $160 million round.”

Mullenweg said that “because companies use blog as a subdirectory and a subdomain, I think that the domain is interesting.”

READ MORE: Google Domains Service Moves to .Google

New gTLDs have not seen a lot of mainstream adoption, but with WordPress’ widespread reach it could help educate users.

“It is too early to tell whether the new [gTLD] space will be accepted as a viable alternative to the established space,” a recent academic report said.

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