Syed Balkhi Donates WP.org to The WordPress Foundation

If you’ve ever clicked on a URL to WP.org and ended up on WPBeginner.com within the past two years, you’re not alone. It routinely happens on discussion forums like the Advanced WordPress Facebook group and Twitter where referencing WP.org turns into a link to WPBeginner.com.

A great example occurred in 2015 when Antti Kuosmanen tweeted that Nikolay Bachiyski is the WordPress project’s new security czar. In his tweet, he used WP.org to reference the project and Twitter automatically turned the URL into a link to WPBeginner.

When questioned why the domain points to WPBeginner, Matt Mullenweg, co-creator of the WordPress project, took part in the conversation by saying the behavior seems sketchy. This ignited a heated conversation among members of the community and whether the domain should be donated to the WordPress Foundation.

Balkhi has a Change of Heart

When I talked to Syed Balkhi, Founder of WPBeginner.com, in June of 2015, he made it clear that he would not donate the domain to the WordPress Foundation. Today, in a complete change of heart, Balkhi announced that he has donated WP.org to the WordPress Foundation.

The donation is a result of gaining a new perspective on life after discovering his wife is pregnant with their first child, “From ironing out a new will to working on expanding my life insurance coverage, there’s a lot happening,” Balkhi said. “For the first time in my life, I’m thinking about unforeseen circumstances.”

Balkhi listed the things that are most important in his life and near the top of the list is WordPress, “It is my extended family, and you can see that if you meet me at any of the WordCamps,” Balkhi said. “I have been using WordPress for the last 10 years and WPBeginner has been around for almost 7 years. In other words, WordPress has been part of me for 40% of my life.”

He says donating the domain to the WordPress Foundation is the least he can do. It’s a huge gesture of good will and insures the domain won’t fall into the hands of the highest bidder or to a nefarious party.

WP.org is an incredible addition to Mullenweg’s domain portfolio that includes WP.com acquired in 2009. It’s also the perfect complement to the w.org domain obtained through Project94.org that is used to host images and other static assets on WordPress.org.

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5 Comments


  1. Here’s a big thanks to Syed Balkhi for the donation. Among the others me too had been annoyed regarding the redirection.

    Happy to see it’s been handed over w/ out exchanging any money. :)

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  2. @Syed,

    you have my full respect, now more than ever and you are proving huge business foresights for the future of WordPress with that step.

    Instead of selling the domain for 50-100k, (estimated, real value is likely much more) you are making a awesome gift and are doing your part in making sure that WordPress keeps and increase its power in the future. This is a magnificent gesture but also a very wise decision from a business perspective for all your related projects which are depending on the success of WordPress.

    I am curious to see where wp.org will be routed in future. Logical step would be wordpress.org -> wp.org ;)

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  3. WP.org is an incredible addition to Mullenweg’s domain portfolio

    I find this is not fully correct.

    Matt != WordPress Foundation != Automattic

    wp.com belongs to Automattic and wp.org to the foundation.

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