A Domain of One's Own

From IndieWeb

A Domain of One's Own (or DoOO) is a practice/movement (primarily within academia) encouraging people to have their own domain, post their content on their own website, and have greater control over their digital infrastructure.

The movement and philosophy started as a project at University of Mary Washington that allows students, faculty, and staff to register their own domain name and associate it with a hosted web space, free of charge. With their Domain and corresponding web space, users will have the opportunity and flexibility to design and create a meaningful and vibrant digital presence.

The project name is a direct reference to Virginia Woolf’s essay A Room of One’s Own (1929) in which she writes:

“A woman must have money, and a room of her own, ​if she is to write fiction.”​

Original Project

First developed at Mary Washington University, DoOO has grown as a movement that supports digital identity creation and data ownership, and allows for the publishing, curating, and sharing of work online.

The original A Domain of One’s Own is managed by the Division of Teaching and Learning Technologies (DTLT) at UMW. It was founded by Jim Groom, subsequently the co-founder of Reclaim Hosting.

DTLT works with faculty and departments to meaningfully integrate DoOO into their classroom practices and programs in order to ensure that students are gaining varied and valuable digital experiences during their time at UMW. In addition, DTLT supports members of the UMW community to use DoOO to cultivate a digital profile for their professional work. Their site serves as a source of information about the project as well as a gateway for UMW users to login and manage their accounts.

“Faculty and students must have a domain and web hosting of their own if they are to truly understand and engage the deeper possibilities of the open web.” — Jim Groom (2013)

Technical Capabilities

Within the system, users may install LAMP-compatible Web applications, set up subdomains and email addresses, and install databases. In addition, users may choose to “map” their domain (or a subdomain) to other services, such as a UMW Blogs, Google Sites, or Tumblr.


  • EduHack Domain Kits - This site includes 18 Kits for you to learn about and practice your domain building skills. Each kit is an activity that will provide you the instructions and materials necessary to put in your domain a blog, a wiki, a stand alone web site, a file dropbox, a photo gallery, and more.

Domains Projects

There are over 100 colleges and universities with Domains projects. Here is a list of some of them:

DoOO as a Service

Reclaim Hosting provides hosting and support as a commercial product and service to schools that would like a DoOO program.



Domain Camps / Conferences


In Summer 2020, Chris Aldrich started hosting a recurring (monthly) meetup for the Domain of One's Own space. Others are encouraged to help organize similar versions for their timezones. Chris is happy to help set up details and infrastructure to make this happen. Anyone interested in making a short presentation at a future meetup is welcome to make suggestions.


See Also