Great news! The website and code are all coming in under the WordPress.org umbrella and financial support is also involved.
When we launched this website two and a half years ago (oh my was that so far back?), together with a lot of novelties in the way we follow WordPress news we introduced a unique algorithm that measures member contribution to the site. It is somewhat based on Google's PageRank algo and it awards users that upvote good content and punishes those that upvote spammy stuff.
Tom Harrigan is first and Ryan and Donna are soon going to be in the 10.00 club too. As a reminder, vote strength of 10 means that Tom's vote counts as 10 new account votes. So if a bad article is shared, and a spammer creates nine accounts and upvote it, an article that Tom shares around that same time would still outrank it. Same goes for voting on an another article.
If a WordPress news organization wants a new editor they know where to look :)
Congrats Tom and thanks to all members for making this website a great one!
ps. full list of members is available here
"Thesis, Automattic, and WordPress. A 10,000 word story to describe a conflict of ideology." by Brian Krogsgard
Chris Pearson and Matt Mullenweg have hardly communicated with one another in the last five years, but they are ideological enemies. They have very strong personalities and unshakable beliefs on business and software. This is a story of their dispute, their idealism, and the implications it will have on the WordPress project. Chris Pearson and Matt Mullenweg have hardly communicated with one another in the last five years, but they are ideological enemies. They are both wealthy individuals (though of different magnitudes) thanks to their online endeavors, with very strong personalities and unshakable beliefs on business and software. This is a story of their dispute, their idealism, and the implications it will have on the WordPress project.
Matt Mullenweg co-founded WordPress, founded Automattic, and is one of the most successful entrepreneurs of his generation. He runs a billion dollar “unicorn” startup centered on a culture of embracing open source technology and has achieved incredible success embracing principles counterintuitive to either Silicon Valley or big corporate culture. He’s paving a new path for how to create a valuable software company while religiously defending and
Tabs in the WordPress plugin repository were removed in the recent redesign and replaced with "read more" links. There was a lot of feedback that this was more difficult to use and today the "read more" links were reverted back to tabs.
Last month the WordPress Plugin Directory relaunched with a new design and improvements to the search algorithm. The new design replaced the plugin pages’ previous tabbed interface with a wall of text, truncated by numerous “read more” links. The outpouring of negative community feedback on the new design overshadowed many of the helpful improvements. Removal of the tabs was by far the most unpopular design choice in this iteration, as many found it to be confusing and inferior in terms of navigating the information efficiently. Users, developers, and contributors on the redesign felt their feedback was roundly ignored throughout all phases of the design’s beta and testing period.
Four months ago, contributor Jon Ang (@kenshino) opened a ticket regarding the “read more” links, which he described as “a usability nightmare.” The ticket was closed as a duplicate of another ticket which received very little discussion. Today, Otto marked the ticket as fixed, announcing the return of tabs in the commit message:
Change single-plugin view to have tabbed design. Eliminates read-more on all sections except developers and changelog, adds tabs back
Good luck on your new adventures Vid. Now.. well isn't this interesting...
Automattic has taken over a majority stake in Pressable, the managed WordPress hosting company, with a purchase of Pressable CEO Vid Luther’s shares of the company. They were already a significant investor. Automattic has purchased a majority stake in Pressable, one of the earliest managed WordPress hosting companies, founded in 2010. They were first known as ZippyKid, and rebranded in 2013.
Automattic was already a shareholder in Pressable, most recently as the primary investor of a $1.5 million round in April of 2015.
Technically, Automattic purchased common stock shares from Vid Luther, the CEO of Pressable. The monetary value of that common stock was, “enough to be debt free,” according to Vid. He owned about 37% of the company, or 4.5 million shares of 7 million shares of common stock (versus preferred shares). The company has also been in debt, reportedly close to $1 million worth.
Automattic is now the majority owner of Pressable, and since Vid sold his shares, this is effectively an acquisition, and Automattic will be able to set the direction of the company from now on. Chris Lauzon, a Happiness Engineer at Automattic, is the interim CEO. There are other smaller investors in
Interview over at indiehackers.com: what were the past failures, what business models worked the best, etc.
Hello! What's your background, and what are you working on? I'm Ionut Neagu. I studied computer science, and then in my final year of college I got into freelancing. I found some early success, so I kept doing that for about a year.
I thought that the next step would be expanding by starting an agency, and that clients would come to me on their own, simply because I had some business cards printed out and a business website on the Internet. Spoiler alert... it doesn't work like that.
I failed. The agency idea didn't go anywhere.
So I decided to pivot, and I launched ThemeIsle with a couple of friends. The goal was to give people access to some high-quality and simple to use WordPress themes. I had many hopes going into it. However, six months in, I was, again, ready to close the whole thing down.
But somehow we endured. We found the funds necessary to keep the ball rolling. One month after that, we hit $12,000 in monthly recurring revenue. Six months later, we'd reached $60,000/month.
We experienced our ups and downs, for sure. However, nowadays more than 500,000 people use our products actively. We average around $50,000 in revenue each month building cool WordPress themes, our most
Interview with Vova Feldman; co-founder of Freemius, a suite of solutions for monetization and analytics for WordPress plugin & theme devs. “Taking an idea and turning it into a vision and then executing it takes time, lots of hard work, and you stumble across endless challenges along the road."
You can find Vova on LinkedIn or Twitter. This is our recent interview with him, as part of our Kinsta Kingpin series. Q1: What is your background, & how did you first get involved with WordPress?
I discovered development very early in my life. When I was 12, my father’s friend gave him a programming book on C-development, which my father passed over to me. I got bored one weekend and decided to give it a try by following a few tutorials – it was love at first sight. The fact that I could type some characters and create intelligence swept me off my feet! This magical “aha” moment changed my life and I knew that my future will involve software development. The combination of the “power” to code, my love for math, and my early passion for solving problems with engineering and technology guided my path to naturally become a technological entrepreneur.
I had the chance to work at a startup during high school, as well as while studying computer engineering and physics. I graduated with a double degree in Computer Science and Math from the Technion – the top engineering university in Israel.
After finishing my military service in an elite unit
Matt Mullenweg announces that they are dropping development with React.
Big companies like to bury unpleasant news on Fridays: A few weeks ago, Facebook announced they have decided to dig in on their patent clause addition to the React license, even after Apache had said it’s no longer allowed for Apache.org projects. In their words, removing the patent clause would "increase the amount of time and money we have to spend fighting meritless lawsuits." I'm not judging Facebook or saying they're wrong, it's not my place. They have decided it's right for them — it's their work and they can decide to license it however they wish. I appreciate that they've made their intentions going forward clear.
A few years ago, Automattic used React as the basis for the ground-up rewrite of WordPress.com we called Calypso, I believe it's one of the larger React-based open source projects. As our general counsel wrote, we made the decision that we'd never run into the patent issue. That is still true today as it was then, and overall, we’ve been really happy with React. More recently, the WordPress community started to use React for Gutenberg, the largest core project we've taken on in many years. People's experience with React and the size of the
The Managed WordPress ecosystem now includes Automattic and Tony Perez talks about how this effect the hosting scene.
The Managed WordPress ecosystem welcomes a new entrant – Automattic. Today they officially announced that WordPress.com Business now supports plugins and third-party themes. I am fascinated by the move because of what I believe to be the obvious impacts to the Managed WordPress ecosystem. In the interest of full disclosure, I work in the security division for one of the largest Managed WordPress hosts – GoDaddy – via my affiliation with Sucuri.
The Implications are Gravest to Hosts
If you’re anyone but a host, the impacts will likely revolve around “confusion” when speaking to the difference between .com and .org, but that’s an issue that’s been around for years. This move only compounds the problem.
One interesting observation from my buddy Scott is that it introduces a new channel (i.e., new opportunity) for plugin and theme developers. That’s actually a very astute observation, and while the specifics of how it’d work are unclear I would wager that there is some truth to that sentiment.
The biggest impacts however are likely to be towards those hosting companies that have invested resources (both people and dollars) into
Read thoughts of Tom McFarlin about The WordPress Community which he believes is a Comedy of Drama, Ego, Oligarchies, and More
I don’t know why I feel compelled to begin a post like this, but this is going to be a lengthy as it covers quite of a bit of the state of the culture of WordPress right now. As someone who loves the software, makes a living off of it, and tries to follow along with everything going on with it, things have gotten really intense over the past few weeks – more intense than usual, that is – and it’s kind of a bummer to see.
Secondly, I’ve been told on a couple of occasions in the past that I don’t do a good job of staking my own claim in terms of how I perceive a given situation. That is, I’ve been told that I tend to hang out in the gray versus the black or white of a issue (so I try to weigh both sides of an issue – big deal :) – but I thought maybe I’d take this time to lean in one direction or the other a little harder than I usually do.
Like I said, I don’t know why I should preface what I opt to write about in this post (as it kind of enforces the point above), but I figured it was worth giving some background of where I’m coming from.
And my experience won’t be the same as yours and yours won’t be the same as mine or the next persons, but this is my take on what I’ve seen over the
Matt speaks out on his personal blog about motivations behind Gutenberg and how it is supposed to push WordPress forward. It's quite a lengthy post for Matt. Dig in.
Movable type was about books, but it wasn’t just about books. Ideas spread. Literacy spiked. The elite monopoly on education and government started to crack. Luther’s 95 Theses were printed and circulated on a press, rocking Europe and he issued "broadsheets." Broadsheets became newspapers; newspapers enabled democracy. The printing press ushered in social, political, economic sea changes. Gutenberg changed everything. WordPress has always been about websites, but it’s not just about websites. It’s about freedom, about possibility, about carving out your own livelihood, whether it’s by making a living through your site, or by working in the WordPress ecosystem itself. We’re democratizing publishing — and democratizing work — for everyone, regardless of language, ability, or economic wherewithal.
WordPress’s growth is impressive (28.5% and counting) but it’s not limitless — at least not in its current state. We have challenges (user frustrations with publishing and customizing, competition from site builders like Squarespace and Wix) and opportunities (the 157 million small businesses without sites, aka the next
Pippin shares his experience with auto renewals. 20 months worth of results shared here.
About twenty months ago, while sitting on a couch in Auckland, New Zealand, my team and I flipped the switch to enable automatic renewals for AffiliateWP. Two months later we did the same thing for Easy Digital Downloads and Restrict Content Pro. This was a move that we had been working towards for nearly a year and it’s one that we believed would fundamentally change the position of the company over the next one to two years. Now that it has been twenty months, maybe we can answer the question: were we right? Did it make a significant impact for us or was it all futile hopes? Historically we, like many other online product companies, have struggled with low renewal rates. All of our products are sold with annual licenses that should be renewed each year so long as the products are in continued use. Renewal revenue is a critically important part of growing any online business because it reduces the expensive process of customer acquisition. Your revenue isn’t purely a factor of how many new customers you obtain, it’s a combination of your new customer acquisition and your existing customer retention. If you have great customer retention, you can grow your annual revenue
WP.org no longer redirects to WP Beginner. Owner Syed Balkhi transferred ownership to the WP Foundation.
Over the last year and a half, if you typed in the domain wp.org, then you were redirected to WPBeginner. This was an unexpected and unpleasant surprise for many because you really wanted to visit WordPress.org, home of the popular content management system. Today, I’m pleased to announce that we have donated the domain to the WordPress Foundation. For majority of you, this doesn’t mean anything and life goes on as usual. For those who’re more involved in the WordPress community, this is a huge deal because now you can type wp.org in your Tweets, Slack messages, Facebook statuses, etc without cursing at me or WPBeginner.
I know this redirect was frustrating because many of you tweeted at me or sent us angry emails. To all of you and even those who took the high road, I want to apologize for my actions.
Now you’re probably wondering what changed?
The short answer is A LOT.
My wife and I are pregnant with our first baby. This has given me a new perspective on life as whole.
From ironing out a new will to working on expanding my life insurance coverage, there’s a lot happening. For the first time in my life, I’m thinking about unforseen circumstances.
Pippin shares the highs and the lows of building his business around eCommerce platform. Pretty insightful to say the least.
At this time three years ago, I released a small eCommerce plugin to the world called Easy Digital Downloads, and now it’s anything but a small plugin. During the last few years, I have had some of the best highs of my life, and a few of the deepest lows. For my own reflection, I would like to look back at a few of hardships and a few of the peaks I encountered along the way. The team
First, I cannot thank enough the team of people that have helped propel us to where we are today. It may have started as a one man journey, but it was only that way for a short while. Today the Easy Digital Downloads team consists of four full-time developers and support staff, two part time support staff, and two very active contributing developers, and on May 1 we are bringing on another full time team member to manage documentation. To each of these individuals, I must express my most sincere gratitude for believing in the platform, trusting me to lead it, and sticking along side the rest of the team through good and bad. Without the hard work of everyone on the team, Easy Digital Downloads would only be a shadow of what it is today.
Growth of a code base
Easy Digital Downloads began as a relatively
Alex King, one of the original contributors to WordPress, founder of CrowdFavorite, and all around nice guy has passed away after a battle with cancer.
Congrats to ManageWP. And also kudos to Post Status for the scoop, or at least one of the first ones out the door with the news.
GoDaddy has acquired the WordPress website management service, ManageWP. ManageWP will remain a standalone app, and GoDaddy will integrate several features into their GoDaddy Pro and WordPress hosting plans. GoDaddy has acquired ManageWP, the popular website management service. The terms have not been officially disclosed, but it’s my understanding that the deal is structured based on a post-earn-out valuation that could change depending on performance. The deal closed on September 1st. GoDaddy declined to comment on the specifics of the financials.
ManageWP was founded in 2011, officially launched in January 2012, and has more than a quarter million websites on their service. Their team of nearly 30 people is headquartered in Serbia, but is capable for remote operations, and the entire team will join GoDaddy. Up to this point, ManageWP was fully self-funded. The company was founded my Vladimir Prelovac, who is coincidentally moving to the US, and will now work from GoDaddy’s Sunnyvale office; the company CEO is Ivan Bjelajac.
Speaking to Vladimir, he says the discussions with GoDaddy began several months ago, when they were seeking a potential partnership. The relationship
The community doesn't make it any easier to build a business.
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A new benchmark of the 10 most popular WordPress caching plugins.
A speedy website attracts more traffic, reduces bounce rates, and ranks better on search engines. Maybe it’s time to re-evaluate your site’s caching needs and invest in an upmarket plugin to reap the rewards of your hard work. High page load times have an adverse effect on your WordPress website and caching ensures that you never have to face them head on. In this article, we’ll aim for the lowest possible page load times with the right caching plugin by evaluating several different available options and ranking them based on page load times conducted in a real-world testing environment.
Let’s put this all into context before we move on to the tests.
A Note on Caching
In a nutshell, a cache is a component that stores data so future requests for that data can be served faster.
Generally, data is cached to reduce site speed and improve data fetching times. This is immensely useful in cases where a user frequently returns to a particular website. The site is cached and the browser doesn’t have to retrieve the entire site – it restores the cached version and receives the fresh information thus resulting in faster page load times.
Search engines take site speed seriously in their ranking
Big news for the WordPress core leadership team: Andrew Nacin has joined the United States Digital Service.
Andrew Nacin now works at the U.S. Digital Service, the federal government service that aims to “redefine public service for a new generation.” Nacin continues his role as WordPress lead developer, but is stepping back from working on the project full time. Andrew Nacin hasn’t worked at Audrey Capital since January. At Audrey, he has worked for more than four years for WordPress co-founder Matt Mullenweg, exclusively on the WordPress project. He has joined the White House’s new U.S. Digital Service.
The U.S. Digital Service is a new organization that operates from the White House, with an aim to modernize and transform the way the federal government operates digitally.
When I was approached, I have to admit that I was nervous to step back from the day-to-day buzz of WordPress because I’ve invested so much. But the community stepped up, in most cases not even knowing about my life change. That’s the beauty of open source, and the fantastic WordPress community in particular. WordPress continues to play an important role in my life. With Matt Mullenweg’s support and encouragement, I’m taking time away from Audrey, where I’ve worked since 2010. I’m still actively involved in the project,
WordPress.com just announced AMP for their users- for self-hosted WordPress site they've released a plugin to enable the AMP support.
Your sites are about to get even faster on mobile devices: starting today, WordPress.com sites support Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) – a new initiative spearheaded by Google to dramatically improve the speed of your pages loading on phones and tablets. The best part? WordPress.com users don’t need to do a thing. AMP works automatically, loading a lightning-fast version of your posts. This means readers will get your content even faster on mobile when they come to your site from Google search, or news apps like Nuzzel.
To see AMP in action on WordPress.com, check out this article, or see a Google search demo at g.co/amp.
Speed matters on the web. AMP is an open-source framework that allows browsers and apps to load your sites quickly on mobile devices. See the AMP site for more details on how it works. We’re proud to be a partner in this initiative.
And if you have a self-hosted WordPress site, we’ve got you covered too. Here’s a free AMP plugin – click here to install it.
Expect to see more apps and sites embracing AMP in the weeks and months to come – and as a WordPress.com publisher, you’re ready right now.
Missing out on the latest WordPress.com developments? Enter
This is important! Everyone should read it. Stop abusing WordPress Volunteers & Automatticians #WordPress
I am sure that many of you know about the hosting page change on WordPress.org. And many of you would have been involved in spreading the news, I made sure to do so myself. There were many requests from various parties to fix up the hosting page, after having a few of the hosts taken down. One of such requests came from the WordPress Support Team.
The background of this is that, we are not supposed to directly recommend any host beyond linking to the host page. At least not on the W.org support forums.
But we were also wary on only recommending one host. So we got James to look into who’s managing the page.
We found out that Matt has intentions to fix up the page. But we all know that he is a busy man, and with the Support Team, we are probably one of those that actually have to link to that page on a daily basis. So I told James – why don’t we help?
And James did.
The strange thing was how this all turned out later.
The intention of James’ involvement was that he is an employee with a NDA and the survey was meant to be confidential. Could you imagine the advantage of having a database of the strengths and weaknesses of over a 100 hosts?
The hosts who submitted
We celebrate the third WP Rocket’s birthday. With this article we want to share with you a retrospective of the past 12 months.
Today is a special day: it’s WP Rocket’s 3rd birthday! 3 years ago we launched the first version of the plugin. Since then, we’ve come a long way and now we are extremely happy with the results and feedback we’ve received from our thousands of customers. It’s time to present a review of this last year.
Two Exceptional Records
This 3rd year saw two big records for WP Rocket.
In January 2016, WP Rocket exceeded one million dollars in cumulative revenue, in the two and a half years since its launch.
In the 1st half of 2016 alone, WP Rocket saw $605,000 of revenue, that is an average of $100,000 per month. So, the previous record, established in 2 and a half years, will likely be equaled within less than one calendar year!
At the end of June, we reached the goal of 100,000 websites on which WP Rocket had been installed.
Since the beginning of this year, we have, on average, more than 8,500 new websites every month, that is 1 installation every 5 minutes.
When we embarked on this adventure, we never imagined that we could reach these numbers!
New Astronauts on Board
During the last 12 months, we welcomed 4 new astronauts to the WP Rocket crew.
In order to improve
Finally: "We’ve gained tremendous operational experience and confidence in our systems. The beta label is simply not necessary any more."
Let’s Encrypt announced that the project is exiting beta this week. The initiative, which aims to encrypt 100% of the web by making trusted certificates available to everyone at no cost, launched its beta seven months ago. Since our beta began in September 2015 we’ve issued more than 1.7 million certificates for more than 3.8 million websites. We’ve gained tremendous operational experience and confidence in our systems. The beta label is simply not necessary any more.
According to Let’s Encrypt sponsor Mozilla, more than 90% of the certificates are protecting websites that never had encryption before. Automattic is one of the early sponsors of the initiative and has partnered with Let’s Encrypt to add full SSL support for all sites hosted on WordPress.com. With the success of the beta period, Let’s Encrypt continues to renew and add sponsors to its roster, including Cisco, Akamai, Gemalto, HP Enterprise, Fastly, and other organizations.
“A mix of people and organizations use Let’s Encrypt,” Mozilla representatives told TechCrunch. “Many individuals and smaller entities use it, but quite a few larger organizations such as WordPress.com, OVH, Akamai and Dreamhost use it as well. It’s
Really interesting news. Congratulations Mike! I might also add - thank you for WordPress!
It’s with huge excitement that I can announce that Mike Little is joining Human Made. Mike is the co-founder of the WordPress project, having forked a small blogging script, b2, with Matt Mullenweg. He has a long history with the project and brings with him unparalleled knowledge and experience of it. Mike will be joining Human Made as a WordPress Specialist; in addition to doing development on our client projects we’re exploring ways for Mike to use his extensive talents in training and outreach, where we think he can have a big impact both on Human Made and on the wider community. He’s a massive asset to the team, an old friend to many of us, and we’re honored that he will call Human Made his home. I am excited to join the Human Made family. I’ve known many of the team for quite some time and have worked with the company in the past, so I feel most welcome.
I’m looking forward to being able to work on larger projects. Something I couldn’t manage in my one-man company. I’m anticipating being able to hone my skills and take them to a new level.
Anyone who knows me knows I am passionate about free software and the GPL. I admire Human Made’s