WordPress Launches WP.me URL Shortener
The web may be a place for a lot of innovation but most of the times it's trends not needs that aid the creation of new products or services.
One big trend at the moment is of course Twitter, the microblogging phenomenon that has taken the world, or at least the media, by storm in recent months. Another related trend is URL shorteners which, despite being around for years, have just recently picked up in use. It's starting to be in poor taste not to have one so what could blog hosting giant WordPress.com do but launch WP.me, its very own custom shortener.
In all fairness the new service isn't your standard URL shortener in that it's only meant for Worpress.com blog posts, not other generic links, though this too has become somewhat of a trend, with blogs like TechCrunch launching their own shortener just for their content, and even Digg with its infamous DiggBar is moving in this direction. Every blog and post on WordPress.com now has an associated short URL so you can easily share it on Twitter, which is actually kind of ironic seeing how the microblogging service has become increasingly popular at the detriment of traditional blogs.
"I think a few of these points are worth following up on. While URL shorteners have had some incredible usage tied to the growth (and constraints) of Twitter, I question their sustainability as a business," Matt Mullenweg, WordPress.com founder, wrote. "But as Dave Winer articulated, there's no reason we shouldn't have a shortener ourselves, and here we are."
Using the new shortener is very straightforward and a new "Get Shortlink" button is now available when writing or editing a post. For logged-in users there is also a new link under the "Blog Info" menu in the admin bar. With the literally hundreds of URL shorteners out there, there may have been little need for a WordPress specific one but some might find it useful and it probably wasn't much of a hassle for WordPress.com.