What is the difference between WordPress.org and WordPress.com?
This question tops my personal FAQ list. So here is the answer, in fable form!
The Brothers WordPress
“How many times must I tell you, it’s not about the money!”
WordPress.com was fuming, mad at his older brother WordPress.org for not understanding.
.Org turned to face his younger brother. He saw the intensity in his eyes, the focus. “Alright .Com, tell me then, how is what you’re proposing not just a money scheme?”
.Com cooled a bit as he met his brothers’ gaze. He had been too tentative, too afraid to tell .Org what he really felt. Not anymore…
“.Org, you built a beautiful blogging platform and made it freely available to the world but,” his words caught in his mouth, “but, it’s not really free to all.”
“Oh no?” questioned the older sibling. “So when countless web developers download the program, who are they paying?”
“That’s not what I meant,” .Com continued. “It’s free to them, just not free to all. You need a server to run the site and, while you made it as easy as possible, you need to be at least a good bit web savvy to get it up and keep it going. What about all those people out there just looking for a way to share their stories but don’t have the time to become entry level developers? It’s not free for them.”
“True, but servers cost money and making it easier means reducing the ability to customize. We can only do so much,” .Org replied.
“That’s exactly why I propose charging. Not for the blogging service, we make the basic service free for everyone but then we’ll offer some special perks. We only need so many people to sign up and everything is funded. Free entry-level blogging for everyone.” .Com smiled, he was going to make his dream a reality, he just knew it.
“Alright little bro, you sold me. Go for it, you have my support. I’ll add a link to your page, you add a link to mine. The only thing I wonder, do you think anyone will get confused when they see two WordPresses?”
If you don’t know the difference between the two and are not selling anything on your blog, go with WordPress.com. You can always migrate later as you develop your technical skills.