WordPress vs. TypePad, Round 2

Comments on blog posts are funny things. They can be aggressive, constructive, nice, flame bait or spam, and not each of them deserves a response in turn. Most of it is noise, so when I got a comment from the CEO of Six Apart on my post about why TypePad sucks , I am pretty impressed and blown away.

Until I read the comment itself, which… well, to put it nicely it was abrasive, insulting, and belittling of my expertise… which man, lemme tell you, is a fantastic marketing strategy for the CEO of a company that sells blogging software. Given that I’d heard good things about Anil Dash I was shocked and surprised, and was about to let it go with a simple rebuttal…

…and then I realized I wasn’t about to let it slide. He said that I hadn’t done my research, so I did it: and here’s what I found, point by point, to everything he said.

Before I go into the meat of it all, let me post a challenge to both Automattic and SixApart: Let the numbers decide who’s better. When all is said and done the way to determine which system is better is best determined by how many signups, users, blogs, posts and comments each of your systems generates over time. I’m no statistician, but I do know a few that are rational and uninvolved in this debate (if a little anal retentive) and would be more than happy to provide a reference to finally settle this argument once and for all. In other words, I’m asking you to put your numbers where your mouth is, and then publish it.

Now, on to the research!


“To be fair, you have to compare the hosted services of TypePad and WordPress.com or the installed software of Movable Type and WordPress.org, or you’re comparing apples and oranges.”

Touche, yet I’d like to point out that you do the very same thing several times in your response.

“A quick glance reveals tons of features that are exclusive to TypePad.”

This is an interesting statement, because from observation TypePad has been copying WordPress for years now (Which I can respect- there’s no shame in copying good ideas). I’ve listed a few features below that have been on WordPress.com far before TypePad ever got around to implementing them.

  • Banned words
  • Moderation queues
  • Spam folders
  • Static Pages
  • WYSIWYG text editor
  • Paging
  • Custom headers
  • Podcasting
  • BlogRolls

“Anybody who’s paying attention to technology at all couldn’t have missed TypePad for iPhone showing up in Steve Jobs’ keynote at Apple’s WWDC at the beginning of this week. But it’s not just that TypePad was first, and best, to bring blogging ot the iPhone, but that there are exclusive clients for the Blackberry, Windows Mobile, Palm, and Nokia phones too.”

Congratulations, you’re standing in the shadow of Steve Jobs. So is every last iPhone addon, Mac Peripheral and iPod knockoff. Trying to bolster your company through secondary affiliations like that indicate that you can’t stand on your own. What really matters here isn’t the number of clients you have available, but the amount of quality content you publish via those clients. Secondly, saying that you’ve got the “best” mobile client is misleading- http://wphoneplugin.org/ is quite effective and many people I know are happy with it. Now, I’d rather claw my eyes out than write something substantive on my iPhone, but then there are those bloggers that get by with twits rather than substance. Can you provide actual comparative numbers proving that your mobile solutions are “better” than someone elses?

“There’s TypePad AntiSpam built-in, which even WordPress users have told us provides better comment spam blocking than Akismet.”

I’m again going to request a citation for this statement, because so far the only information I’ve found comparing the two systems is an article about how TypePad’s spam protection is overly aggressive and unstable, as well as an email stating that your spam protection was actually derived directly from Akismet.

“The only ads on WordPress.com are the ones Automattic puts onto your blog but hides from you if you’re logged in.”

If you are catering to the type of blogger who wants to have ads on their site, then you’re catering to people less interested in providing content and more interested in earning a quick buck. That’s certainly an acceptable business strategy, but not one I would lower myself to.

“You could even have ads for causes or companies you don’t support on your WordPress site.”

Well, of course. Anyone who uses AdSense can do this.

“You’re just plain inaccurate in regards to URLs.”

Really? Oh, goody, lets take a look.

“While Meg hasn’t set up Cute Overload in the way that you’d prefer”

She clearly tried, and if one of your largest blogs can’t figure out how to properly set up canonical permalinks, you’ve got a problem.

it’s absolutely possible to have whatever URLs you want for your site — take a look at Celebrity Babies:

You neglect to point out the following link: http://celebritybabies.typepad.com/, and all the subsequently valid links that can be searched for on google. If you want to talk SEO, lets talk about the penalties of double-posted content.

To contrast on WordPress.com, lets take a look at People Magazine. The original stylewatch wordpress account link redirects to the correct URL, and even if you search at the stylewatch.wordpress.com site the links all 301 redirect to the correct server.

Furthermore, TypePad 404′s out if the URL is incomplete or even missing a trailing slash , while on WordPress they can map you to the closest match on a particular URL. In other words, even links that have been cut off because they’re too long are 301 redirected to the correct ones. And lets not talk about the behavior of your trackback URL’s.

Long story short, URL handling in WordPress is superior to TypePad. Moving on…

“I see this mistaken assertion made often enough about TypePad that I have to wonder if someone out there is deliberately misstating what the system can do.”

I have seen several TypePad blogs that properly handle permalinks. Unfortunately, the default instructions provided by Six Apart result in the behavior I’ve listed in my previous post, so it seems that your problem isn’t one of not supporting a particular feature, but one of crappy documentation.

“And TypePad simply blows WordPress.com away on SEO when it comes to search engine indexing: TypePad delivers your blog posts directly to Google Reader and My Yahoo and Blogline.”

Please provide a citation on this one, because last I checked WordPress and practically everyone else out there has a standard notification system via pings and trackbacks which works like a charm. In contrast this notification system of yours seems to be a public ATOM feed, which only works when and if a search engine decides to consume it.

“On WordPress.com, you’re kind of moving into a bad neighborhood — by their own admission, one-third of the blogs on WordPress.com are spam.”

This was a ballsy enough statement that I hunted down the actual numbers from Automattic. Turns out that one-third of their signups are spammers, which are subsequently and effectively axed before damage can occur (Information available for the curious). It’s important to make sure you’re precise in the statements you make- else it starts sounding like spin and hype.

“You seem to know more than enough about SEO to know what that implies.”

Hey look! A compliment! I was feeling like the scum of the earth there for a while….

“On TypePad, you can make a password-protected blog, and share it with as many people as you want to grant access to. On WordPress.com, it’ll cost money if you want to invite more than a certain number of people to have passwords on your site.”

I just tested this, and I had no problem password protecting my blog and giving different users access. I could also do multiple authors, and multiple blogs without being charged a dime, something TypePad will charge you for. Moving on…

“Extensibility? Let’s talk about what normal people who aren’t PHP coders can do.”

This statement’s a little odd, because it automatically posits that a PHP coder could do something. i.e. we’re talking about Movable Type vs. WordPress rather than TypePad here.

Assuming the latter, TypePad has an existing framework by which third party providers can inject their widgets into your blog. I don’t call that extensible, especially when I have to tell my friends to go sign up for a host of other services to get their stuff the way they want it. At that point you’ve given up control of the user experience to the widget provider, which… well, how much do you trust them to stay in line with your UX & UI?

For the former… you mean install any of thousands of plugins? No? How about installing thousands of themes? No? Oh, you mean the ~300-odd plugins, or the piddly number of themes available for Movable Type?

“For self-hosted options, Movable Type is free, open source, and it’s just irresponsible to misrepresent the fact that MT is open source.”

I’d like to point out that you just went on record to say that there’s no difference between the Free Download and the “Movable Type Professional Pack” advertised at $100, which… lets see…”is an add-on for Movable Type 4.1 available exclusively to paid customers”. I for one know you didn’t mean that, but please be careful in the future- I don’t want to be subpoenaed in a class action suit.

“And MT is dramatically more secure than WordPress.org — and that’s according to the Department of Homeland Security’s own statistics.”

You are using misleading statistics in the post you linked. The aggregate data provided by the Department of Homeland Security covers every version of each system and every third party plugin across the better part of a decade, without even taking into account reported vs. actual, fix turnaround, whether it’s third party or core, and the size of the reporting community.

To be truly able to call MT more secure than WP, you will need to do a study on # reported, # valid, # fixed, features and plugins tested and the time it took to resolve a vulnerability. Anything less is FUD, and until you can come up with some serious statistics I’m going to go with the solution that CNN, the NY Times, The Wall Street Journal, Fox News, Reuters, and the Financial Times entrust their blogging to.

“But of course, there’s no MT-MU, and that’s because MT was intelligently designed from its very first release almost seven years ago to support multiple blogs.”

But of course if you want support, pricing starts at $300, and from what I hear it doesn’t scale effectively for more than a couple of thousand users. Actually, here’s an excellent question: Are you powering typepad.com with the openly available version of Movable Type? Because WordPress.com is powered by MU, and if you’re not willing to take your own medicine, you have no right selling it.

“It’s not a separate fork with its own set of plugins and themes.”

98% of WP plugins (that’s thousands) and all WP themes work with MU. Check your sources.

“And it’s not just possible to host blogs for others with it, it’s the sort of thing that’s done on the scale of Major League Baseball offering free MT blogs to anyone who wants one.”

Wait, what? You mean all the news outlets I listed above don’t count as “on the scale of Major League Baseball”? How about WordPress.com? Are you saying that the MLB’s free blogs have more active writers than your competition?

“Sentencing your friend to a blog where he can’t run his own ads and his “upgrade” path is an ordeal of constant security problems that have been described as a “cancer””

Well, hey, the Technorati top 100 have a good WordPress representation, so at least they’ll be in good company in that “Blogger Jail” you’re suggesting. As for upgrading, I know how easy WordPress is, and I know how “easy” updating Perl CGI’s is, and the latter’s a much bigger pain to deal with.

In fact, ever since the WordPress SVN repository went public, my updates are single commandline affairs that I’ve already taught to several clueless bloggers.

“cool stuff like blogging on the iPhone”

http://wphoneplugin.org/

24 thoughts on “WordPress vs. TypePad, Round 2

  1. Hey Michael, first let me apologize — I took your title of your last post as a tone of sort of light-heartedly busting our chops, and was trying to respond in kind. So, no offense intended, and I hope you get where I was coming from. Second, I’m not the CEO of Six Apart, though I have been around the company for a long time. But rest assured, our CEO’s a lot more polite than me. ;)

    I don’t want to get into too involved a response here, out of respect for this being your blog, but I do have to take strong issue with this:

    Let the numbers decide who’s better.

    If we do that, worldwide, then it’s easy. MSN/Windows Live Spaces is the best blogging platform, followed by MySpace blogs, with Blogger in a distant third. Do you really think popularity is a fair measure of the quality of something? :)

    Then to go to your list of features… from what you’ve listed, Banned words, Moderation queues, Spam folders, a WYSIWYG text editor, Custom headers and BlogRolls were *all* in the initial release of TypePad, which went to beta a full five years ago this month. That’s literally years before WordPress.com launched, and if you look at the Internet Archive record of the TypePad site then, I think it’ll back up the assertion. The rest of the features, some of them definitely came to WordPress.com first, and some came to TypePad first, and you’re absolutely right that competition has been good for both services.

    “Congratulations, you’re standing in the shadow of Steve Jobs. So is every last iPhone addon, Mac Peripheral and iPod knockoff. Trying to bolster your company through secondary affiliations like that indicate that you can’t stand on your own.”

    I’m extraordinarily proud of what we’ve done as an independent company — from being the first to really commit to building a business model to support blogging, to inventing TrackBack and OpenID and other technologies, to inventing new things. But I’m just as proud of the fact that we play well with others. Even though he’s a TypePad user, I would never say that anybody who makes something for the web platform is standing in Marc Andreessen’s shadow, and it’s just as shortsighted to say that creating for the iPhone platform is merely standing in Jobs’ shadow. It also highlights the fact that, yes, we do focus on aesthetics and usability and a great experience, and we repsect others who do the same.

    From TechCrunch: “[L]ast week we switched to TypePad AntiSpam as a test, crossed our fingers and hoped for the best. After a week I’m pleased to say that as good as Akismet is, the TypePad product has performed as good or better for us.” And if you want to forward the email you got, I’d be happy to disabuse anyone of the notion that TypePad AntiSpam is based on Akismet — it couldn’t be, since Akismet isn’t open source and TypePad AntiSpam is.

    Our goal is to cater to whatever bloggers want — and some want ads. We don’t think it’s “lowering” ourselves to do what people ask of us, and we certainly don’t judge bloggers for having different goals. I think we can agree to disagree there, though.

    We also do send old-fashioned pings and the like, but when you say “this notification system of yours seems to be a public ATOM feed, which only works when and if a search engine decides to consume it.” you’re absolutely right. Fortunately, the search engines that have decided to consume it include all of the major search engines. So, faster than pinging, and not prone to being spammed.

    And of course, when it comes to the impressive list of users, we have an equally impressive list, including many of the same media organizations you list. However, I’ve been led to understand that trying to bolster your company through secondary affiliations like that indicate that you can’t stand on your own. :)

    At any rate, my point isn’t to get into a pissing match with you over minutia. You pointed out a lot of things that matter to you, but I haven’t heard a clear statement of why a friend who was inclined to use TypePad shouldn’t make that choice. If your friend had a hard requirement of something the platform couldn’t do, that would make sense, but what I hear instead is that different platforms do things differently, and that TypePad does have some unique strengths that no other platform does. That fundamental truth isn’t contradicted by the points you’ve made above.

    I am by no means saying you should choose something different for yourself. But if you’re making a recommendation to a friend, the fact that we have things like a help ticket support system where you get answers directly from our team can go a long way to making people happy with their blogging. I believe the friend you were responding, frankly, is more likely to want to click on a button and add a Twitter badge than to dive into PHP coding. More likely to want to post a photo from his iPhone than to want to run his own blogging service. And given those constraints, I think TypePad’s a great choice.

    All of that being said, thanks for pointing out the areas where we can do better, especially the ones where it turns out we have a great answer but just haven’t been getting the word out about what platforms like Movable Type and TypePad can do. If you want to continue the conversation more, please don’t hesitate to drop me a line, and again sorry if my tone was unintentionally confrontational earlier.

  2. You completely missed a couple statements I latched onto:

    >“You seem to know more than enough about SEO to know what that implies.”
    I still don’t see this as a compliment. I think the expected response was probably “uh… hmm.. what does it imply? Maybe I don’t know what I’m talking about….”. And “seem” is never good.

    >Let’s talk about what normal people who aren’t PHP coders can do.
    “normal people”? So anyone who can hack together some dead-simple code is therefore not normal? If you’re catering to the non-technical, then say so. But PHP doesn’t have an insurmountable level of entry, I think anyone who wanted to make modifications could probably figure out how (not to mention, the WP developer community is outstanding and you could probably just ask for anything you needed done, and someone would pull it together for you). If you really want a closed system, of course selecting a less-well-known language is ok, but don’t cite it as an advantage!

  3. There won’t be any reply from SixApart on this post (or on Lloyd‘s) because there’s nothing to be added I think :)

    (except maybe how painful it is to install MT for the first time, when it’s just piece of cake for a newbie to install WP)

  4. To cherry-pick a few of the easier points, given the length here makes a real discussion near-impossible:

    Are you powering typepad.com with the openly available version of Movable Type? Because WordPress.com is powered by MU
    1> No, they aren’t. Typepad is, and has been for some time now, a different application. The dog food argument is invalid given that the equivalent MT functionality didn’t even exist then.
    2> WordPress.com doesn’t run on the openly available WPMU, either. (See end.)

    I’m sorry, but the raw number of plugins each platform has is absolutely irrelevant. It has been repeatedly pointed out that part of the reason for this difference is that both applications do things in the core code that the other does not. The MT templating language has been evolving for some time now to reduce the need for plugins to accomplish many tasks.
    Now, if you want to focus on specific plugins as deficiencies, feel free.
    As a sidenote, the MT plugin directory is not remotely comprehensive, and I have the personal library to prove it.

    I’d like to point out that you just went on record to say that there’s no difference between the Free Download and the “Movable Type Professional Pack” advertised at $100, which… lets see…”is an add-on for Movable Type 4.1 available exclusively to paid customers”
    [...]
    As soon as you want to make money off of it (as you pointed out above) or “support some kind of commercial endeavor”, it’ll cost you. [from your comment on prior post]

    Actually, no, you’re putting words in his mouth based upon your own lack of understanding of the licensing. The core MT application, under the MTOS license is free for any use. This is where your comparison ends, as WP has no equivalent of a commercial add-on like the ProPack, or official support(as far as I’m aware). The ProPack does switch over to a personal/commercial usage split, but that is not a requirement of the core software.
    I’ve given up on trying to understand why the licensing is confusing to people; I have no problem with it, but many others clearly do so something does appear to be wrong but I have on idea what.

    (Note that I’m probably even more aware[and more accurately] of the problems MT has than you are and am not denying them. But I’m also not in a position to defend WP, seeing as I don’t use it.)

  5. To an extent, I see his point about “people who aren’t PHP coders”, but only to an extent.

    All WordPress themes are, basically, PHP code. Customizing your site and it’s look requires theme editing, which invariably means editing that PHP code. While this is not difficult, it’s sometimes hard to convince people of that. From my experience as a moderator on the WordPress support forums, I can say that some people simply won’t do it under any circumstances. They have this notion that it’s beyond them, even when it is probably not.

    But then again, these same people would have issues with a simple templating system as well. The problem is not that they think they can’t code, it’s that actual text scares them in some fundamental way. If it’s not about dragging things around in a GUI, then they can’t bring themselves to do it. This is where we get things like widgets to make this sort of thing simpler.

    And in the long run, themes like Sandbox and similar are slowly making theme editing via PHP/Templates almost unnecessary. Sandbox can be wholly customized with mere CSS editing, is good with SEO, and highly semantically flexible. New versions of WordPress support “CSS Themes” like this, where the theme remains the same and only the CSS changes. More support for this sort of thing is planned in the future. So his point about editing PHP files might not be the case sooner rather than later.

  6. Not a single mention of whether TypePad is powered by in-shop MT. Ding Ding.
    I’ve used MT before, and I found it to be a pain to theme, use, and it took forever to do the ‘publishing’ posts.

  7. ‘“And MT is dramatically more secure than WordPress.org — and that’s according to the Department of Homeland Security’s own statistics.”’

    ‘You are using misleading statistics in the post you linked. The aggregate data provided by the Department of Homeland Security covers every version of each system and every third party plugin across the better part of a decade, without even taking into account reported vs. actual, fix turnaround, whether it’s third party or core, and the size of the reporting community.’

    I’d like to imagine that a Department of Homeland Security would be concentrating powers upon clear and present danger and not on the comparative insecurities of blogging software — they should turn their collective attentions to how many CEOs can dance on the point of a needle if they have that much time on their hands.

  8. This seems to be the most important point. Anyone care to explain further? If both sets of URLs are indexed by Google, isn’t that duplicate content?

    Quote:

    You neglect to point out the following link: http://celebritybabies.typepad.com/, and all the subsequently valid links that can be searched for on google. If you want to talk SEO, lets talk about the penalties of double-posted content.

    To contrast on WordPress.com, lets take a look at People Magazine. The original stylewatch wordpress account link redirects to the correct URL, and even if you search at the stylewatch.wordpress.com site the links all 301 redirect to the correct server.

    Example:
    http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&sa=G&q=site:celebritybabies.typepad.com

  9. After you’ve comprehensively proven your case here, can you move on to which is better, Mac or PC next?

    These types of comparisons, not matter how “objective” they appear to be can never cover all of the factors that matter to people — it always comes back to a question of what suits any given individual at any given time.

    As for the “Typepad/MT sucks because it’s too hard to theme” type of comment, you could also argue that WP theming sucks because there is too much PHP mixed into the tags. Both can be said to be accurate, but both are clearly open to argument.

    And for the record, I think both platforms are OK, and don’t have a problem with either and would (and have) recommended both to different people at different times and in different circumstances. It always come back to choosing the right tool for the job at hand.

  10. Typepad has undergone a radical change the last year, pushing out new features that at least for me have caused tons of problems. I volunteered to beta test their new Compose Editor. When it created problems beyond just composing posts, I asked to be removed, and was told I was stuck. Now that the Compose Editor is out of beta, I am still in some sort of beta account, with a loss of functionality throughout my account. I’ve been told their help documentation does not apply to my beta account, yet submitting help tickets — which used to be responded to within hours when I had a basic account — often does not resolve a problem and can take days to get an answer, even though I supposedly have “priority” status having upgraded my account. I cannot get an answer as to how long I’ll be in limbo.

    This is not how to keep or gain customers. I don’t want a “fully loaded” fancy car if the damn thing can’t get me from point A to point B, and that’s how Typepad feels right now.

  11. You write,

    “If you are catering to the type of blogger who wants to have ads on their site, then you’re catering to people less interested in providing content and more interested in earning a quick buck. That’s certainly an acceptable business strategy, but not one I would lower myself to.”

    I know you’ve got some cheerleaders for sticking it to someone perceived as The Man, but as a constructive suggestion I’d really take a deep breath before you hit that submit button and take a look not only at your tone, but at the unfounded assumptions you may be making about huge swaths of people whose work you do not know. You don’t value the ability to host ads on a blog. Great. You could have simply made that point graciously. As it is, you sounded like a sanctimonious little twit.

    First, if you’re making some kind of moral statement about ads… the same folks who provide the non-ad-friendly WordPress.com are also behind the VERY ad-friendly self-hosted WordPress. So much for the moral superiority of Automattic and their developer community. While they have specific reasons for forbidding ads on WordPress.com-hosted blogs, they are just as happy to “cater to the type of blogger” at which you are pursing your lips like the Church Lady.

    Let’s go over it in detail:

    “If you are catering to the type of blogger who wants to have ads on their site…”

    There is no such thing as “the” type of blogger who is ad-supported. There’s an infinite range from total spammers to authors advertising their own books to piano teachers putting up links to the sheet music they assign (how DARE they get 8% from Sheet Music Plus!) to ordinary bloggers with a few adsense units to defray hosting, to corporate blogs to put a face on a company and product, to widely read blogs that run “real” advertising from major companies eager to get in front of their highly qualified audience.

    “Then you’re catering to people less interested in providing content and more interested in earning a quick buck.”

    How so? Many bloggers are primarily passionate about a subject and want to earn a few bucks if they can. Other bloggers ARE primarily interested in earning a buck because they view blogging as a JOB. But who cares, as long as the content is good? When I go to work for some company, I am indeed more interested in earning a buck than I am in the company’s agenda. However, I have agreed to perform at a high level of professionalism in exchange for said buck. If I fail to meet expectations, I’ll be gone. If a blogger fails to provide content people want, same deal.

    “That’s certainly an acceptable business strategy, but not one I would lower myself to.”

    I assume you work for a living. So do many bloggers and other people who provide all sorts of content. If it’s “lowering yourself” to earn money providing content, then all your favorite writers, entertainers, journalists — and (gasp!) probably some of your favorite bloggers — are “lowering themselves” in a cynical attempt to put food on the table for their families.

    Or do you think blogging is different, somehow above it all? Please explain.

  12. Coming late to this discussion but I hope you’ll see this comment and can respond: I’ve recently divorced Blogger because it determined that my blog is spam, has locked me out and I can’t reach a real person to fix the problem. So now I’m hoping to give my business to either TypePad or WordPress. I appreciate the back and forth in this post, which is helping me to make my decision as I consider both platforms. However, what I need to know at this point is this: does either TypePad or WordPress have a history of automatically determining that a blog is spam, like Blogger did to me, and therefore locking a legitimate author out of her own blog? Thanks.

    Leah

  13. Hi,
    These types of comparisons, not matter how “objective” they appear to be can never cover all of the factors that matter to people — it always comes back to a question of what suits any given individual at any given time.

  14. Hello Mike – I have read your posts on the subject of WP versus Typepad and all of the comments, took me a while but fair is fair, you took the time to write your rebuttals and not knowing anything about TypePad if I was a judge and jury you presented the preponderance of evidence in favor of WP..

    I am really more happy to know that my decision to build my little network of blogs, stores and websites using WP and PHP seems to be the correct one. Your opinion reinforced my decision to use WP over some other platform. I am not a developer, and not a particularly great writer but I do have interests, experience and opinions about a lot of things. I was told I could make money with blogs, IF i was patient and did the right things, IF I was willing to put in the time with relevant and interesting content, IF I was willing to learn new technology, etc. So I stopped throwing my money away in the stock market and started investing in myself via blogging for dollars.

    As a complete amateur almost three years ago now I started my first blog, http://www.lowcarbmarine.com with the intention of creating interesting and informative blogs (as i could afford them) about marines (i was one), health and nutrition (i lost a bunch of weight on Atkins) golf & travel (my job for the last 25 years). RVing is relatively new to me but I own a fifth-wheel travel trailer, crafts (i do mosaic so i can tell people I’m artistic), pets, (i have the best dog i rescued from the pound, etc and at the same time make some money to supplement my income as I head into my 60′s, via things like adsense, text link ads, Amazon and a few select affiliate relationships.

    The theory being that one website alone is not going to make me a ton of money unless I have super-secret proprietary info to give away (I don’t) but maybe 100 sites making a few bucks a day will mount to something someday. I am trying to do this legitimately with keyword loaded, original content, video, regular updates with relevant content. Even my advertisers are relevant to my content. I knew it was going to take a lot of time and effort but nothing really worthwhile comes easy does it? To date I have approximately 14 blogs, 39 landing pages, 2 Amazon stores, a link directory and a couple of other sites. I have used WP exclusively and really find it user friendly and easy to use. Of course I did not set it up on my server and handle the plug ins – my developer did that and I was happy to pay for it. The support alone was worth the money.

    Once again, I am not a developer but have worked with one I have known a long time and who I worked with when I was involved in the Hospitality Industry in Scottsdale, Arizona. I would appreciate your comments about any of my blogs as I am about to undertake a new mission. I have semi-retired to a relatively small town in Arizona (20K) and the towns businesses depend on tourism for their survival – something I know a lot about.

    There was a seminar here that i attended where a guy came in from out of town and presented to area businesses “Blogging for your business made easy and affordable”. Attendance was very good with businesses from landscapers to restaurants to hotels represented. But in about twenty minutes into his presentation I realized; I know more than this guy does! I was shocked and then as he got deeper into it with his free this and free that and how easy it is, blah, blah I started thinking wait a sec – he is just overwhelming these people with BS to sell his $600. ” I will build you a blog with TypePad kit. I wanted to get up and scream, hey people there is a better way and it’s called WordPress!

    My developer and I decided a while back after I had moved and settled in that we would collaborate with a little consulting business that would assist business owners in this small town with website creation, updating, blogs, whatever. Since we both are very experienced in the tourism industry and with WordPress as our platform we figured the best application would be to use WP as a content management system instead of the blog format. I wont bore you with the details but after hearing this Typepad guys pitch with his wild gestures and used car salesman approach I decided I had better find out more about TypePad and how to sell against it. I have registered a domain in the name of the town and plan on creating a business link directory using PHP. Your insight and defense of WP was very helpful, thank you.

  15. Hello Michael,

    Like you I had Typepad and WordPress simultaneously for awhile. I thought it would be good for me to have a foot in both camps. Finally I had enough of Typepad’s wretched support. But I had a lot of material published and couldn’t move keeping permalinks intact.

    I offered programmers $200 for a clean transition. Couldn’t get anyone to take me up on it. First we wrote a Typepad to WordPress guide. People complained it was too intimidating and asked us to do it for them. Did that for awhile and finally built a Typepad to WordPress conversion service to help people escape. I can’t believe SixApart still doesn’t have an exporter with permalinks.

    I spoke with Anil Dash today at length about the export problem and he still won’t fix it, even when I offered him our custom templates to install directly as Typepad’s exporter. Not only that in the last three months, they’ve stopped us from exporting 500 posts at a time. Now it’s just 100 posts at a time. Lots of fun. Even with experience and expertise and dedication, the programming time on a single Typepad to WordPress project is still seven to eleven hours. The first time we did it, it took 50 man hours.

    Of course that’s keeping comments, permalinks and images and site structure and everything intact. But still. It’s way too hard. Anil told me about some Atom API converter but that converter just doesn’t work and is disinformation.

    So Julie, if you still would like to escape that terrible Typepad beta – I feel for you – check out our guide or our service. I’ve been there and had to build a design and marketing company with my own programmers to escape SixApart’s Typepad hell.

Leave a Reply