Microsoft shifts bloggers to WordPress

Microsoft’s abandoning its Live Spaces blogging platform following a deal with WordPress that will see its 30 million users move to the Automattic platform.

In another ‘if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em’ move, Microsoft’s director of Windows Live product development Dharmesh Mehta says: “Rather than having Windows Live invest in a competing blogging service, we decided the best thing we could do for our customers was to give them a great blogging solution through”

WordPress is claimed to power over 8.5 percent of the web, and is used on over 26 million sites and seen by over 250 million people every month. Live Spaces, by contrast, has around 30 million active users.

The move will be easy, says Mehta. “Windows Live and have worked together to build a simple way to move your blog posts, comments, and integrated photos right over to and start taking advantage of all their new features,” he says. “And we’ll also redirect all your old Spaces URLs to your new blog, so you don’t lose any visitors along the way.”

The company’s linking the service into Messenger, so that friends automatically receive a notifcation each time there’s a new post.

Users will be prompted to make the update on their next visit to their Spaces account, and  have six months to make the move. If they don’t, their content will be deleted.

“We’re very happy that Microsoft chose as their preferred new blogging service for Windows Live users. It’s a sign of how strong has become,” says Automattic’s Paul Kim.

There’s a FAQ page here.