Keep your friends close and your enemies closer

Microsoft took this advice last year when they admitted defeat and handed over 7 million Live Space blogs to the biggest force in blog Content Management Systems (CMS): WordPress.
WordPress reports that a staggering 64 million-plus websites in the world today are powered by the free software, with almost half of that number belonging to self-hosted FREE blogs.
And, this number looks set to get bigger and bigger. Take a look at this Google Trends graph that pits WordPress against some of the most popular CMS and collaboration portals currently on the market. WordPress, it seems, is leading. No, WINNING.
Google Trends
Even Joomla, which has a number of fanatical followers, cannot keep up. It mounted a brief challenge in 2009 before tapering off and bumping uglies with Blogger.
?We’ve grown to power 14.7% of the top million websites in the world, up from 8.5%, and the latest data show 22 out of every 100 new active domains in the US are running WordPress,? said WordPress a few months ago.
And, Midphase Web Hosting can vouch for this statistic. Well, unofficially anyway. We calculate that perhaps 43% of all the CMS products installed on our servers are powered by the free WordPress blogging platform. Joomla came in second with 29% followed by Drupal with 27%.
These statistics are important to us because they show us where our customers (and future ones) hearts and minds lie. Microsoft, it seems, learnt that lesson when it gave up trying to re-invent the wheel and joined the WordPress revolution.
Generally, the three biggest reasons recorded for the runaway success of WordPress appear to be the following:

  • It’s FREE
  • It’s incredibly EASY to use
  • It’s open source. Transparency is a great thing.

This means that millions of web designers, web developers and website designers can literally have a website up and running on our servers within 5-20 minutes. No fuss. The famous five-minute install is proof of this.
If the future success of America resides in growing small business, then WordPress can be a powerful catalyst.
In fact, a recent survey by WordPress suggests that 6800 self-employed respondents were responsible for 170,000 sites personally. They charged a median hourly rate of $50. Try doing that with paidproprietary? content management systems!
recent survey wp
Depicts worldwide usage of self-hosted WordPress blogs | Source: WordPress
While we cannot yet give away hosting packages for free (believe us, we are trying!) we can get you very close. Since 2003 we have been offering cheap hosting packages at $2.95 per month, which includes unlimited web space and a 30-day money back guarantee.
If you couple this cheap monthly rate with the ability to build websites quickly using the free WordPress software, you then have the ability to scale up a small web design or marketing business quickly at extremely low entry costs.
This union of free software and cheap hosting can help drive small business success in the United States.
All America needs now is a definitive solution to its broadband and digital literacy issues to help fuel this CMS growth.
?Fifty percent of today’s jobs require some technology skillsand this percentage is expected to grow to 77 percent in the next decade,? said the FCCC.
Only 68% of all Americans with access to high-speed broadband Internet are using it. In South Korea the rate is 90%.
But just like Microsoft recognized the dangers of competing against WordPress, the FCC understands the opportunities, not just pitfalls, of the growing digital revolution.
?Imagine what having millions of more Americans digitally empowered can mean for the economy: millions more customers for online businesses, more Americans using cost saving e-government services, and more Americans with the digital skills needed to find and land the jobs of today and tomorrow.?
The FCC even has Best Buy’s Geek Squad helping out in 20 cities with computer literacy programs.
Perhaps the FCC should consider contacting WordPress and Midphase to put together a more ambitious plan: Bringing million of new online users into contact with the power of free online Content Management systems (and cheap hosting) to drive small business growth in the United States.
Actually the FCC may be closer to this goal than you may think. WPCandy recently reported that the FCC became the first Government-run org to contribute code to the WordPress open-source project. It has developed two plug-ins for the project.
If these trends continue, it appears that WordPress and dare we say it, Midphase, may become centrifugal forces in the coming U.S. broadband revolution. We welcome it!