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I use to think that custom domain names were important for making one’s blog stand out, but I no longer think they matter.
1. No one actually types out domain names any more, all of the major browsers have auto-complete.
2. People are used to reading blogs, so having “wordpress” in the domain name isn’t going to scare away any readers.
3. More privacy (although domains can be registered with private registration).
On the other hands, arguments in favor:
1. People in China can’t read anything with a Wordpress domain. But realistically, I don’t know if it matter that people in China won’t be able to read my blog.
2. People in McDonalds in Canada with free wifi can’t read anything with a Wordpress domain. And it is a proven fact that at least one Canadian reader likes to read this blog while enjoying a Big Mac.
3. Possibly there’s someone out there who will be more likely to think the blog is important because it has its own domain name.
1. Search engine optimization.
2. Possibility of Adsense revenue. Google has banned both this blog and my calicocat.com blog. Maybe NOT having a custom domain is better for not being banned? Steve Sailer still has Adsense on his blog (although he’d have a lot more clicks if he placed the ad block on the upper left instead of hidden way down).