Giving another Google account control over your blog

This article is about changing the ownership of your Blogger blog.   As well as looking at how to make the changes inside Blogger, it also looks at some other issues you may need to think about (eg comment moderation, items outside Blogger, advertising).

Blogs and Google Accounts

Each blog is "owned" by at least one Google account.   This administrator account can do anything in the blog:  write posts, set up new authors, change the template, add new formatting rulesdelete posts - or the entire blog, moderate comments, etc etc etc.

Initially, the account that sets up the blog is the owner.  But if the person using this account gives someone else administrator rights, then there are multiple owners.

And once there are multiple administrators, any one administrator can delete all the others, or just demote them down to being authors, thus making him or her self into the owner,

So this is the very minimum that you need to do to transfer blog ownership to another Google account:
  1. Give the other Google account author rights, then once this is successful,
  2. Give the other Google account administrator rights.

But, unless you have a very, very simple blog, you cannot stop there: you also need to think about other things that may have been set up, inside Blogger, and in any other tools that the blog uses.

Inside Blogger

You may want to change who is notified about any comments that are left on the blog.  This is done on the Settings / Comments tab:  there are separate sections for
  • Comment moderation (one email address)
  • Comment notification (a list of email addresses)

Email Notifications:
If the blog is set up to notify anyone when it is published, you may want to review this - any any related Google groups or forwarding addresses you may be using to make this work.

If the blog is set up to receive postings by email, you may want to change the secret words (so the old owner no longer knows them).   If there is an intermediate email-address used so that the owner can tell who made Mail2Posts, then the new owner should either take over this account, or set up and use a new one.   
All set under (Settings / Email and Mobile /Posting Options)

Mobile Posting:
If the blog is set up to receive postings by SMS, you may want to change the device that is registered, so the old owner no longer has access.  (Settings / Email and Mobile /Posting Options)

Custom URL:
If your blog has a custom domain, then you'll almost certainly want to transfer control of this.

If you purchased the domain inside Blogger, then you should have set up a domain-administrator account shortly after registering the domain-name.   The easiest option is just to tell the new owner the login name and password for that account - and tell them how to access it.

If the new owner doesn't want to keep the Google (ie goDaddy or eNom) link, then they can log in to whatever domain registrar that they want to use, and request a transfer.   You will get an email and need to do some things in response to make the transfer successful.   Make you you read it carefully, because each registrar is different.

But I'm not currently sure if there's any way for the new owner to keep the Google (goDaddy/eNom) link.

Items controlled outside Blogger

These days, most blogs include some items which are stored outside Blogger. If you transfer the ownership of a blog, you may also want to transfer these items, or at least make a plan for what will happen to them.

I've put notes about a few that I know about here - If you know about any others that are popular, please leave a comment below and I'll update the list.

RSS Feeds created in Feedburner
To transfer ownership of an RSS feed, log into Feedburner, click on the Feed that you want to transfer, and click on the Transfer Feed link.   You are prompted to enter an email address, and Feedburner say that they will contact that email to arrange the transfer within 72 hours.

Photos / Images
Any pictures that you upload via Blogger are stored in a Picasa web-album that belongs to the account that did the uploading.   Unfortunately Google doesn't yet provide any way to transfer ownership of individual web-albums.    I don't (yet) know if the recently introduced collaboration features help here or not, but they may.

Also, pictures uploaded before Blogger started using Picasa-web-albums (possibly sometime in 2007 I think) cannot be transferred.


Docs files 
If your blog links to any files hosted in Google Docs or Sites file stores, then these are owned by the Google Account that created or uploaded them.   Check with that site to see if it's possible to transfer.

Custom Maps
I don't think that there is any way to transfer ownership of these.

An option is for the old owner to provide the export file location (view the map, right click on "view in google earth" and choose copy URL), and the new owner could then create a new map (and put this into the blog) - however this will be a lot of work if may maps are used.

I don't think that there is any way to transfer ownership of these.  

(if you own them - not ones owned by others that you're just linked to)

Social Network sites
For example Facebook pages, Twitter accounts.   (These may not be inside the blog at all, but may be a key part of it's promotional tools - if you are taking over ownership of a blog, you will probably want to take over these too.)

    For items that cannot be transferred, you need to transfer them manually (if this is possible), or to reach an agreement between the old account owner and the new account owner about what will happen to the items.    For example, you may agree that the old account owner will not delete the web-albums for one month, and that they will download the photos and provide them on CD to the new account owner - who will then upload them, and change all the photo links in the blog to the new URLs.

    If your blog has any advertising (eg AdSense, Amazon Associates, Chitika, or indeed any other advertiser) you may need to transfer the account that this is linked to.

    For AdSense, if the advertising was set up through Blogger, you can change the account under the Monetize tab.   However if any ads were put inside individual posts, these posts will all have to be edited, and ad-units for the new owner will need to be added.   (I don't think you can just replace the Publisher-ID, because the ad-unit has and ID as well.

    I'm not sure how sophisticated this is as yet:  if you want to keep the advertising, rather than removing and then re-creating the advertising, it may be a good idea for the new account to set up advertising accounts for itself on another (test) blog first, and then switch it over in the blog that's being changed, so that the existing ads/ad-structures are kept.

    An Alternative:

    Depending on how many items-outside-Blogger that the current account owns, it may be better for the person who owns the current account to just give it to the new owner, and to get themselves a new account.

    Even better:  If there's a chance that the blog will ever change hands, set up a new account just it when you start the blog.  I'm going to write a whole post about this one day soon - but for now I'm convinced that you really need to think about the future as soon as you start your blog.

    Related Articles: 

    Understanding Google Accounts

    Granting administrator-level access to your blog

    Setting up a new author for your blog

    Deleting blogs and blog-posts

    Setting up email posting for your Blogger account

    How to resolve conflicting Google and Google Apps accounts

    Why RSS / Subscribe to Posts is important for your blog

    Understanding Picasa-web-albums

    Getting started with Blogger


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