WordPress is a free, open source, online blogging site that many are using today to create online content quickly and easily. One of the benefits is that it’s free. Open source means that anyone can write plugins or improvements or themes for WordPress because the owners allow them to do so. They release or share developer information, so that anyone can do so. It helps build the site and make it more customizable and it also means that the original owners don’t have to do that work. But they also don’t have to suffer any of the liability. It’s a use at your own risk kind of deal, but the online community has embraced WordPress, so the online community provides a certain level of support. Open Source is the ‘way of the internet.’
There are two parts:
- WordPress.com is the site where you can start a free blog and it is hosted (for free) on their site. So the url contains wordpress.com.
- WordPress.org is also free, but it has information about how you can install the WordPress software right into your own hosting site, so you can use their CMS (content management system software) to run your own site.
The difference is really control and traffic. If you install WP into your own site, you benefit from and own all the site traffic and you also have more control. You can customize it more and design your own site or use a template of your choice. If you use WordPress.com, all the traffic goes to WordPress and you are limited by their templates and their rules.
But you benefit from updates and support. It’s a good way to go if you just want to blog and you are not very technical. Many people start out blogging and later decide they want more and ‘upgrade’ to the WordPress.org site. (Any older blog or blog from another bloggin site can be imported into WordPress) It is the most popular blogging and CMS on the internet.