.blog domains

.Blog registry explains they did what they did with reserved domains simply because they can!

The .blog registry made a blog post today trying to explain what is going on with all the reserved domains and the .blog landrush. In short they explained that they did what they did simply because they can.

“As a registry, we can decide to reserve as many domains as we want.”

I wrote that they registered for themselves the best keywords and also reserved many names including all one, two and three character domains. They will probably auction many of these reserved names.

They also confirmed what I already said. That they used people’s pre-registrations to compile their list of reserved domains. They finalized their reserved domains just before Landrush started on November 2nd. People were making pre-order for at least 2 or 3 months prior to that.

“the lists of Founder domains and Reserved ones weren’t final until just before Landrush”

This blog post seems like the reply I was promised by the .blog registry but never received. I am still waiting for Patrick Jones to reply to my email from November 7. On November 8 I got this: “Sorry for the delay and thanks for sharing the article. I am in India for ICANN at the moment but will circle back with the team and will get back to you.”. Then silence. That is very disappointing from a registry that I thought was going to make something of the extension.

This was a sloppy launch with will hunt .blog for many years to come. Oh well…

You can read the complete announcement here:

As we move forward on the road to General Availability, which will start on Monday, Nov 21st at 15.00 UTC, we’d like to take a moment to explain the process behind the decision to activate domains in our Founder’s Program while reserving some others.

Founder Program, or Qualified Launch Phase (QLP)

As a registry, we had the option to activate up to 100 domain names, either for our use or to give to third parties to promote .blog.

We offered some these domains to third parties, and you can see a showcase of these sites on our Founders page. We also decided to offer a list of 25 very generic domains to WordPress.com, so that they could be shared for free among millions of users instead of being owned by single entities.

Reserved Domains

Reserved domains are domain names that are not registered, and cannot be registered until released. As a registry, we can decide to reserve as many domains as we want.

We reserved all one-, two- and three-character domains from being registered by anyone and will probably release them in the future. In addition, we allowed employees of our parent company, Automattic, many of whom are bloggers and passionate about blogging, to reserve a single domain each, some of which were first names.

Landrush Applications

Many registrars started taking pre-registrations for the Landrush period as early as last August. We do realise that some users were disappointed when they discovered that the domain names they had applied for were in fact attributed as part of the Founder’s program, or reserved, and wouldn’t be possible to register or auction at the end of Landrush.

We would like to apologise to these users, but as the lists of Founder domains and Reserved ones weren’t final until just before Landrush, we couldn’t communicate them to registrars in advance (there is nothing registrars hate more than ever-changing lists of reserved domains) .

In addition, domains were removed as well as added to the lists, and we didn’t want to take the risk for registrars to refuse applications in September for domains that would be released in October.

To mitigate the downside of such uncertainty, we structured our fees in a way that registrars are charged only for successful registrations, giving them the opportunity to refund their clients in full for failed applications.


About Konstantinos Zournas

I studied Computer Engineering and Computer Science in London, UK and I am now living in Athens, Greece. I went online in 1995, started coding in 1996 and began buying domain names and creating websites in 2000. I started the OnlineDomain.com blog in 2012.


  1. That they used people’s pre-registrations to compile their list of reserved domains

    Why am I not surprised? Matt M has a history of shady practices and of course, why should that change?

  2. Ya, that’s really messed up. Lol, you will spend your time wracking your brain and chose domain you really would like, and once you give us that information, we will jack up the price and use it directly against you.

  3. When will people learn, ahhh people wake up KeywordBlog domains do not sell for big money, why the F are you lining up to support these A holes!

    They are probably $20M in the hole, and their business plan is failing, let them fail!

    Do not support them, who gives a crud about .blog so many ways around it.

    I would be happy to get a refund from the registry for any reserves.

    • I can’t believe how many good KeywordBlog.com domains are available.
      I picked up a few today. Not for resale. For brand protection on a few 1-word .com projects I am running and to develop.

      • The offers that come in are $50-500 on the most part, there has never been a big demand.

        Most are single guys doing it as a hobby on the side, no big money in play.

        This is the intel only known to veteran .com holders who have over a decade of experience holding, and dealing with such inquiries.

        All the guys crying over their rejected applications need to realize the registry did them a favor in the long run.

        They could switch to .live, .online, .whatever who cares

  4. I thought about getting my first name but after reading this I will pass for a .com instead.

    Thank you for the article.

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