Blogspot To Start Redirecting To Country Specific Domain Extensions

Martin Brinkmann
Jan 31, 2012
Updated • May 27, 2017

Users of Google's blog hosting service Blogger may notice quite a significant change in the coming weeks. Instead of being able to access blogs hosted on Blogger directly, they may now be redirected to a country specific domain. A user visiting a blog from Australia for instance will be redirected to automatically whenever a blogspot blog is accessed.

Only custom hosted domains are exempt from the change. Why is Google doing this? According to a recently added help page to "continue promoting free expression and responsible publishing while providing greater flexibility in complying with valid removal requests pursuant to local law".

Google explains the move with greater content removal flexibility as they can now manage those removals on a per country base to limit the "impact to the smallest number of readers" as content removed "due to a specific country’s law will only be removed from the relevant ccTLD".

The company notes that users who want to visit the original domain name can do so by accessing for that. It is not clear if this can also be attached to deep links, or if it only works to access the root domain of a particular blog.

It is definitely a confusing move both from a webmaster and site visitor perspective. Especially site regulars may think that something's not right with the site if they are redirected automatically. Some may even believe that they are redirected by a hacked site or computer virus.

What's your take on this development? Lets discuss it in the comments. (via Techdows)

It is also not clear if users who are locked out of the country domain can access the ncr version of the site, or if they are blocked from accessing that version as well. It is however likely that Google will first check the country of origin before making the redirect, which would suggest that users would be blocked from accessing ncr versions if the blog is blocked in a country.

Blog owners on the other hand may fear that the change will impact their search engine rankings or visibility. Google will make use of the rel"canonical" tag to prevent search engines from indexing different country versions of the same blog or post. It is however still possible that some webmasters will notice negative effects of the change, but the canonical tag should ensure that all country-specific domains refer to the one major version of the site.

Blogspot To Start Redirecting To Country Specific Domain Extensions
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Blogspot To Start Redirecting To Country Specific Domain Extensions
Google started to redirect visitors of blogs hosted on the company's Blogspot service to country-specific domains to improve the blocking of blogs in specific countries.
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  1. sfinx said on July 11, 2013 at 7:49 am

    in my opinion its a good think because ads will be visible for local users

  2. diablo 3 gold said on October 15, 2012 at 4:03 am

    Hi to all, it’s in fact a pleasant for me to go to see this web site, it contains precious Information.

  3. Pariuri said on June 3, 2012 at 12:18 am

    How can I turn this off? It’s really weird and I want the old version back!

  4. Darren Held said on March 8, 2012 at 4:10 am

    Google hasn’t definitively confirmed whether or not page rank will be affected in a negative way. This, and the sudden onset of this redirect will make Blogspot users very wary.

  5. Brett said on March 2, 2012 at 12:59 pm

    This is a real nuisance if your blog has adsense on it – you won’t get the clicks for the new sites unless you approve them manually!

  6. Dan said on February 1, 2012 at 4:19 pm

    Wow, that’s a major bummer. I had a blogspot blog once. It was rudimentary but was simple to use and very reliable. Now we have country-specific URLs and integration with G+. I think bloggers should look elsewhere to vent their inner turmoil. I’d recommend Tumblr, Posterous, or WordPress.

  7. Rakesh Jhunjhunwala said on February 1, 2012 at 2:35 pm

    My blog rediriecting to since yesterday, and it has severly impacted my blog. Pagerank is set to zero and all the social counters are set to zero as well.

    The traffic is also a liitle bit down. Don’t know what lies ahead. We work so hard on our blog and someday something happens which hit us like a meteor.

    Best of luck to all of us

  8. Jenita said on February 1, 2012 at 10:46 am

    It is done for promoting free expression and responsible publishing while providing greater flexibility in complying with valid removal requests pursuant to local law.

  9. Roman ShaRP said on February 1, 2012 at 12:32 am

    I hate country redirects. This is the first thing I turn off in Google.

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