When To DotCom?

I’ve been using the dotwordpressdotcom free site here since ’13. In that time I’ve only used about 17% of the 3gigs of allotted storage space, so I’m nowhere even close to getting near that (and to be honest, if I was more careful with some of my monthly Roundup&Rambling main pictures, I could go even longer). But at the back of my mind the question of when/if to go straight up dotcom has been nagging me for a good year or two now.

The cons, at the moment, are far more than the pros and I’m writing this out so I can easily see the facts without the emotion.

PRO’S:

  • 6 gigs of storage space
  • No wordpress inserted adds for any reader (which would only affect those who don’t use adblocker software)
  • Support directly from WordPress staff (7 years here and not really needed it yet though)
  • Ego. Bookstooge.com would swell my head like a watermelon. “Oh yes, I have my own website. I’m that important, you know.”
  • Some random thing I could do that I can’t right now but don’t even know about?

CON’S:

  • $48 for the initial stuff
  • $64 a year after the first year to keep the dotcom and 6gigs of space
  • I don’t need space yet.
  • I’ve seen so many other bloggers have problems, either with going back to dotwordpressdotcom or even the just the dotcom.
  • Comments. Too many bloggers who’ve I’ve seen go dotcom have huge comments issues, most to the point where I stopped following them when they couldn’t/wouldn’t solve the issue. I don’t want to futz around, I just want things to work.
  • I’m still bound by the WordPress.com TOS. Which means those illegitimate rats can yank my website at any time for any reason (seriously, go read the TOS. It is vague as all get out. I was banned from the wordpress forums for stating this to another user, so I am not very charitable on this issue)
  • I don’t want or need a new theme and I have no desire to play around with my site. I did enough of that at blogger and then at booklikes and I’m done. I’m at the stage in my life where I just want things to work, period.
  • Did I mention $64 a year? I ran the calculations, and with deals, that is between 40-50 energy drinks a year. I could have an energy drink every Sabbath morning or I could have a dotcom address. hmmmmm….

For the time being, I’m just going to hold my horses and not make the move to dotcom (by the by, can you believe that dotblog is more expensive than dotcom? That’s just stupid in my opinion). I know several of you have made the move and I’d interested to know if you’re self-hosted, with wordpress.com and what your experiences have been like.

55 thoughts on “When To DotCom?

  1. salonimore1702 says:

    Oh my goodness, I’ve been contemplating this for the past month just because it would sound really cool to have a “dot com” site and I think there would be more traffic too? Though I’m not sure about that last point. But I remind myself that I started this blog for me and not for traffic and comments and that stops me going down that path. But it’s still so tempting! I’m curious to see what others have to say about this.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Andreas says:

    I had my own space for nearly 25 years – not with WordPress but for other reasons. Yes, that’s a long time in Internet measure.
    I found that having your own site might boost the ego. On the other hand no one gives a shit and it’s only a fake boost.
    Then one day, I heard that song to „travel light“ and it hit me strangely. That was the day I unsubscribed from the service and never looked back.
    Sorry if this isn’t the answer you expected.
    Song is here: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=okaqXB6Ns5s

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Hi, I tagged you in the folklore book tag and it would mean a lot to me if you would do it

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I agree with your points. I have paid for a year so i’m enjoying privilege of domain name and all but from next year I going self-hosted. I haven’t figured out all things and how difficult it might be to switch from WP.com to .org but I think I have enough time.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. It’s a lot of energy drinks to give up! Blogger has issues but it’s free and easy enough to use so I’ll stick with simple!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bookstooge says:

      I’m pretty sure you can do the same on blogger, but I have no idea what their space limit is on the free accounts and I have no idea how to even find out, or how to find out how much I’ve used.

      Do you have any ideas?

      Like

  6. Rebecca says:

    I’ve contemplated this too, but just don’t see the benefit for myself right now. Maybe when I start running out of space…

    Liked by 1 person

  7. BrokenTune says:

    Hello Mr Bookstooge. How is your vacation going? Clearly you have finally time to consider the least pressing things in life, like having a .com.
    I’m kidding.
    If space and images are your main concern, then I echo what has Andreas has already said – use an online storage for your images, then embed the image by linking to it.
    I have started using Imgur for this. Just trying it at present. Flickr might also work.
    If it is book covers that are using up your WP media library space, I’d think about linking to the book cover image on LT. That seems to be working pretty well for me (since I had to change all of the images from old BL posts…blergh).
    As much as I hated the new WP block editor to begin with, having to edit a lot of old BL has convinced me that I actually like it – it makes embedding images by link such a breeze. Seriously, it is so much easier than using the classic editor.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bookstooge says:

      Yep, you can tell vacation is going well as I go deeper and deeper into navel gazing territory! 😀

      Most of the images that take up the space are the big non book covers. I actually shrink book covers so they’re about 20-30k, it’s the personal pix, etc, that eat up the space. One more thing to to experiment with I guess.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I guess I must be my own dot com already, since I am already paying the $68 a year. I found out that authors need their own web site (not just a blog), and a tech-inclined younger relative recommended WordPress as probably the best service for that. So, I didn’t think of it as an ego boost but as a business expense. And frankly, it’s one of the smaller expenses of becoming an author.

    I would say for me so far, the financial cost has definitely been worth it. I have met quite a few book bloggers, gotten great advice, and gotten steered toward great resources as I seek to indie publish. I also now have people who will read my book and review it, and their blogs have larger audiences than mine.

    TOS are indeed an issue on almost every platform. Dave Rubin has started a platform to address this problem, called Locals. It’s for people who need, for their work, to use services such as Patreon, but are having trouble with other platforms’ TOS.

    I recently had a similar question to yours. I’m thinking about joining Patreon. Then I could add a Patreon button to my web site, and anyone who felt moved to do so could donate towards my publishing efforts. But it wouldn’t affect the experience of anyone who just wanted to read the articles. A few bloggers I know do this. One is a visual artist and one a theologian, and apparently neither one has been kicked off Patreon yet.

    Anyway, I went over to Locals, thinking they might offer a similar service that would allow me to just add a button to my existing site. But it looks like Locals isn’t like that. You have to create your web site on locals. Then, if you are a “creator,” you have to charge your community a minimum of $3 a month for access to your content. The rationale is that if people have to have “skin in the game,” that will cut down on trolling and mining for gaffes. I understand the rationale, but I don’t want to have to re-start my entire web site and ask all my friends to suddenly start paying for the privilege of reading my stuff. I’m already ridiculously pleased and grateful when you all visit, like, and comment.

    Also, it appears you can’t join Locals as a “creator” rather than as a fan unless you already have a substantial following.

    So, though I would like to jump on Dave Rubin’s train of the future, I think for now I will stay here on WordPress, sell my books through the site, and perhaps add a Patreon button. Maybe by the time the mob comes for me, I will be big enough to move over to Locals? And Locals will be well known enough that people don’t mind joining it? I dunno.

    Anyway, sorry for going off topic a little bit, but I think this is related to what you are asking.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bookstooge says:

      Thoughts like this are exactly why I asked the question. There are a lot more reasons to go dotcom than I’m even aware of. and people blog and go online for a variety of reasons.

      I can say, I wouldn’t pay even one cent to read someone’s blog (no offense). Books are one thing, but a blog?

      And yes, you are a straightup dotcom. Goodluck with patreon 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks.

        Yes, I agree that paying to read a blog doesn’t make sense. Especially for someone like you, who follows a lot of blogs, or like me, who is cheap. 😛 Locals might make more sense for people who provide a useful service through YouTube, such as musical releases, comedy sketches, or instructional courses, who have a large, faithful following and who are afraid of running afoul of YouTube’s terms of service. I personally pay a small monthly amount for the privilege of having access to the hilarious monologues by the folks down at the Daily Wire.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. bormgans says:

    Can you elaborate on the comment issues?
    Also, I was wandering about links. Do links in the old dotWPdotcom format remain valid? There’s tons of them outside WP (on Goodreads e.g.) and I would hate to change all those, and even worse might be other people that have linked to me over the years.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bookstooge says:

      re: Comments
      To remain in the WP commentsphere, you have to have the jetpack plugin installed and that just seems to defeat some people. Specifically, I have had a handful of people I follow go dotcom and suddenly, my wp/gravatar credentials don’t work, or it won’t save my info (some sites use name/email/website and are supposed to save that so you don’t have to fill that in each time). Then you have the comments section not working at all or doing something wonky. Also, the notifications don’t work (that is what seems to usually happen) and let me tell you, nothing kills my interest quicker than having to remember manually which post I left a comment on and checking to see if the person replied.

      As for links. I do know that if you go dotcom through wordpress, they will redirect everything that was pointed at your wordpress site to your dotcom site (since technically, your wordpress site still exists alongside your dotcom and they just redirect everything). I don’t know how everything works though. I do know that if you decide to quite the dotcom and go back to wordpressdotcom, it is a MESS. One of the bloggers I follow did that and I “think” she said everything she wrote and linked when she had the dotcom didn’t migrate back to the wordpressdotcom. She swore she’d never try dotcom again.

      I do know that the forums are filled with knowledgeable people who could definitely answer those questions:
      https://en.forums.wordpress.com/

      Liked by 1 person

  10. piotrek says:

    We’ve been using the paid version for… two or three years? We decided it’s not that much money (but we share the cost, so it’s half the price for each of us). What do we get? Mainly – no adds. The *.blog address is nice, but not important.
    We had no problems though, comments work all right, everything else as well. We also don;t need the extra space. So, is it worth it? It’s not that important. Unless ads really annoy you, as they annoy us 😉

    Liked by 2 people

    • Bookstooge says:

      So are you going directly through wordpress? Or are you self-hosted using the jetpack plugin?

      And honestly, when it comes to ads, I have 2 adblockers installed in chrome so I didn’t even know there were ads until someone using an old version of safari complained and then I did some investigating and voila, I found out about the ads 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      • piotrek says:

        They’re also adding ads to email notifications… it’s my understanding there shouldn’t be in Re-E’s emails now…

        Liked by 1 person

        • Bookstooge says:

          Ahhh, I don’t bother with emails from any site, so I wouldn’t have noticed it. And I only 4 people who follow me exclusively through email.

          I have noticed that WP seems to be moving away from straight up blogging and more and more into the website creation business.

          Liked by 1 person

    • Ola G says:

      Yeah, it was the ads 😛 They were VERY annoying. Haven’t noticed my head grow to a watermelon size yet 😉
      As Piotrek said, we had no problems with comments, and the space is big enough to last us a very long time.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Bookstooge says:

        How did you notice the ads? Just wondering what browser/platform you were using. I’m assuming that means there were no adblockers involved. Was that intentional?

        No swelled heads? I beg to differ! 😉 hahahahaaa

        Liked by 1 person

        • Ola G says:

          We have non-WP friends who were telling us about the ads – mostly in email, but also on site. Yeah, probably no adblock, but haven’t asked.

          LOL, I was waiting for that response! 🤣🤣🤣

          Liked by 1 person

  11. Zezee says:

    I considered going dotcom once to get rid of the ads but yea yo…that price — not feeling it. And I also sometimes have a hard time commenting on the dotcom blogs and sometimes don’t get a notification when the person responds.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Murder by Death says:

    I have self-hosted through .org; I never considered going any other way, because I’ve had my own email server for years and years, and the company that hosts it offered the .org as a free add-on. My account also comes with unlimited storage, so I guess I’ll never have to worry about that.

    I haven’t had any problem with comments, though I activated JetPack right from the start. JetPack *is* confronting – you need to get a .com account to use it, and I backed away at first because … why?? Then after sucking it up and investigating, I learned I just had to get the account, not use it for anything. Once I did that, JetPack was easy. The .com account came in handy too, because now I can use the WP app, which funnels all my followed blogs into a reader feed, that I’m just now starting not to hate – mostly because I’ve figured out some of the funtionality. I get all my notifications from the Reader.

    My thinking is, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. If you’re happy with your current setup, I can’t come up with any good reasons, as a .org user, to suggest you change it. Hope that helps. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bookstooge says:

      Good to see you! Even if it is because of booklikes REALLY going down the drain (as opposed to just circling it when I left).

      I checked out your site and left several test and real comments. My main issue, in the immediate, was that I had to fill in the name/email/website each time to leave a comment, even when I’d just left a comment. There is a way to save that info, but the 2 other bloggers who used that couldn’t make it work, or didn’t care enough, so I stopped following them. Comments are the lifeblood of blogging for me, both on my blog and on others, so anything, and I mean ANYTHING, that gets in the way of that is a big warning sign for me.

      That is interesting about the email and dotorg.

      And you are definitely correct. If I’m not needing an upgrade, I should probably stay away. And since others above have given info on how to link and use other sites for storage, I just might be set!

      This is exactly why I like blogging so much. Getting solutions from a wide variety of people is the best 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Think I’ll stay free. Just like yourself, I’ve got so much storage space left out of the free gigs available that I could blog (at my current pace) for the rest of my life and not fill it 😂

    Sounds like wordpress support is only essential for paid users due to the amount of issues that platform seems to have

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I like that you analyzed the price according to the number of drinks you could have gotten instead. 😛 I actually do that with much more expensive things and compare it to the number of PlayStations I could get instead and my friends just ridicule me for it every time. 😛

    You have all the reasons in the world to pass on the option if you ask me. I, on the other hand, prefer the dotcom without WordPress in it, just because it’s prettier and gives my blog more legitimacy too hahaha I also need all the space in can offer considering all the pictures I share in my reviews. I still remain with WordPress and make use of the Reader and love how it makes it more accessible for readers to like and comment. I have no idea if there are other ways to make it easier for them too. I just know I find it so long and complicated to always have to write my name, link my blog, and do a captcha when I want to comment on some blogs! 😦

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bookstooge says:

      Hahahahaa, that is great! Relating big purchases to playstations, I love it. I suspect we simply scale life differently 😀

      I figured space was a huge issue for you. Currently playing around with google drive to see what I can do with that. I think the rest of the year will be me getting used to the block editor and figuring out what to link, when to link and where to link.

      If I have to fill out my name, email and website more than once on a site, then I eventually drop it. It’s just not worth the hassle imo. If the blogger can’t be bothered to make commenting as easy as possible for as wide an audience as possible, then screw them.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. savageddt says:

    17% in so many years? Im on 26… for 4ish years?

    Like

  16. […] month when I wrote the When to Dotcom post, my main issue was space. Given, I am only using about 18% of the free 3gb that WordPress […]

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s