Open Letter to Automattic

Dear Automattic,

Thank you for, quite simply, the best blogging platform around. is a great way to befriend you.


My back’s killing me, my brain hurts, and my eyes are rolling on the floor somewhere…

Here’s the thing:

I want to move from to GoDaddy using WordPress.

  • Setting up WordPress on GoDaddy – painless
  • Exporting – no sweat
  • Importing – still not sweating
  • Hacking together our own theme – done
  • Automattically redirecting to our new domain – no way Jose!

Not only that, I have spent 90 minutes reading countless forum comments to come to the realisation that the “Domains” offering only goes one way; the opposite direction of where I need to go ;-)

Yes, I can put up a “I have moved” post, but this is so Web 1.0, and code is poetry – don’t you know?

Other like minds are in need of it too – see?

So Automattic, when you have some spare time, please please please fix it.  If not, then please have a big red “no we do not provide this” on the “Domains” page  :-)


PS: The X-hacker comment is very cute :-)

21 Responses to “Open Letter to Automattic”

  1. Did you try adding the domain to this blog, making it your primary URL, and then switching the DNS back to GoDaddy? It should redirect all visitors from to the new domain on the new host, at least as long as you pay the 10/yr for parking.

  2. Mad says:

    Thank you Matt – for both the answer and watching out for rants such as these.
    As one can see, we are alive and well on our own domain and host!

  3. [...] ho provato io stessa, ma leggo sul forum in lingua inglese che funziona, quindi traduco (a senso) il commento di Matt ad un post su questa questione: – aggiungere il nuovo dominio al blog; – rendere il nuovo dominio l’URL [...]

  4. David says:

    Hey Matt and Mad,

    I’m trying to do the exact same thing you’ve done. So happy there seems to be a solution. Just to be clear, I had already purchased my domain name, at — and started hosting with So I had already changed my DNS server settings (I believe).. so now I have to go back and change the DNS server settings associated with my webhost (for to be mapped to Then after that is complete, I change the DNS server settings back to those I was using for bluehost and my run site?

    I feel like I’m talking the opposite of sense into myself.

    If that is correct, how long will it take (it says a change in DNS server settings can take a day or two to go through) and will it automatically redirect posts as long as I’ve kept the same permalink structure?

    Thanks again,


  5. David says:

    Okay, I mapped the domain through wordpress and now when my site comes up in a google search or elsewhere, a click on it redirects to the corresponding post. However, on my blog stats, I am still getting the hits at

    I haven’t yet changed my DNS server settings back.. is this why?

  6. David says:

    … sorry to keep commenting! Should I delete the blog afterwards to reduce duplicate content and make sure that it is directed the the right, because right now it’s redirecting, but to the wrong (the old one, not the new one I set up and was hoping to customize, use plugins with and advertise on…)

  7. Mad says:

    Hi David,
    It looks like you have set this up correctly, although it is puzzling as to what you mean by “wrong”.
    When you request “” a HTTP 302 ( Moved Temporarily) is returned with the new location of “”.
    With respect to duplicate content, this is not a problem, since search engines will in fact only see the “” due to HTTP 302 being received when “” is requested, and they should update their index accordingly.
    This is a very nice solution offered by, in that existing links, including RSS feeds, will automatically be redirected to the new blog (provided you maintain the same URL structure).

  8. I’m still confused. I pointed to, purchased the right credits, and added it to the WordPress blog. How do I:
    1. Make the new domain the primary domain for WordPress and
    2. Switch the DNS back to my host?

  9. Denis says:

    Hi to you all. I have to do the same thing, but the hoster where i’ve purchased the domain doesn’t allow me to edit the dns addresses. how can i solve? thank you

  10. Mad says:

    Hi Jacqueline,
    We put together a step by step guide to redirecting a blog which you will hopefully find useful.

  11. Mad says:

    If your hoster does not allow you to edit the dns addresses via your account with them, you may want to ring them to see if they will do it over the phone. Once you explain what you need to do, they should help you out. You will also need to get them to restore the settings once you have setup the redirection within WordPress. If they are not helpful, then I would ask for your money back and pick another hoster, one who will allow you to edit the DNS names.

  12. I read your guide and ran into a problem slightly different from the one I had before reading it.

    Does the domain I transfer to have to be the primary domain? I added a domain to my blog that was not the primary address of my new blog. I can’t seem to find a way to redirect this secondary domain to my blog after transferring it to WordPress. I keep getting an error page that says it can’t connect to the server.

  13. I figured it out. My new host mistakenly told me to get an add on domain instead of a parked domain. Thanks anyway.

  14. [...] know soon enough whether you have anything useful to contribute to the blogosphere” ( Chat with Matt).  If you don’t know where to start, go to Technorati (blog search engine) and type in your [...]

  15. [...] found the whole issue confusing, and ended writing an Open Letter to Automattic in frustration and Matt provided the necessary information to get it [...]

  16. oriste says:

    It’s a wee-bit late maybe, but I am utterly confused. On the faq page ( it is stated that changing the DNS to the name servers of your self-hosted domain will stop the re-direction (stop the domain mapping, in their words: “The domain name in Option > Domains has no effect at all if you have changed the DNS.”). This is diametrically opposite of Matt’s own explanation above. They can’t both be right i.m.h.o. Which one is wrong? Oh god, please, please, please, let the FAQ be wrong!!!

  17. Mad says:

    @oriste – Yes the FAQ is wrong when setting up to redirect to your self hosted blog. This was the reason we wrote to hopefully bring some sanity to it all.

  18. [...] January, Mad at appealed for the ability to redirect traffic from their old blog to their new wordpres…. Matt responded in comments with a workaround: Did you try adding the domain to this blog, making [...]

  19. Bethany says:

    Hi there:

    Hoping you can help. I read your pdf and all the stuff on this page, but I have a different situation.

    I am moving a blog from to a hosted version using on Midphase Hosting.

    However, currently released VideoPress and we want to host the videos through this cool new option – which requires the videos to be hosted at

    So, can you tell me, if I do this dns move, if I would still be allowed access to my login to set up and host the videos? I read that you can host on and then embed them to any site, and just want to make sure I can still use my existing account to do that.

    Not sure you can answer this, but any insights would be very helpful!

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