WordPress Planet

September 24, 2023

BuddyPress: BP Attachments 1.2.0

Immediately available is BP Attachments 1.2.0. This BuddyPress Add-on maintenance release main goal is to fix two annoying issues (one of them is a regression introduced in previous minor release). Please make sure to upgrade asap.


  • Make sure to only override the WP queried object if it is an Attachment one.
  • Only list the BP Attachments Add-on in optional components into the BP Components Administration screen.

Please upgrade to 1.2.0 asap !

by Mathieu Viet at September 24, 2023 04:34 AM under releases

September 23, 2023

BuddyPress: BP Classic 1.1.0

Dear end users & site owners,

If you don’t know yet what’s the purpose of BP Classic, we advise you to read the Add-on’s first version announcement post. In short: BP Classic is a BuddyPress Add-on that is being developed and maintained by the official BuddyPress development team. It mainly provides backwards compatibility for BuddyPress 12.0.0 & up in case your active BuddyPress plugins or theme are not ready yet for the great BP Rewrites API introduced in BuddyPress 12.0.0. It basically brings back the BP Legacy URL parser.

NB: BuddyPress 12.0.0 is still under development and you can contribute to BP Classic as well as BuddyPress 12.0.0 improvements using the 12.0.0-beta2 (or up) pre-version.

1.1.0 is fixing 2 issues:

  • It makes sure BP Classic is activated at the same network level than BuddyPress (See #21).
  • it improves the way the themes directory is registered (See #23).


@imath @dd32

Please upgrade to BP Classic 1.1.0

by Mathieu Viet at September 23, 2023 08:05 AM under releases

WPTavern: Block Visibility 3.1.0 Adds WooCommerce and Easy Digital Downloads Controls

When WordPress contributor and developer Nick Diego released version 3.0 of his Block Visibility plugin earlier this year in March, he made all the Pro features available in the free version, with the exception of a few that would take more time. The plugin, which is used on more than 10,000 WordPress sites, allows users to conditionally display blocks based on specific user roles, logged in/out, specific users, screen sizes, query strings, ACF fields, and more.

In the latest 3.1.0 update Block Visibility has added the missing WooCommerce and Easy Digital Downloads (EDD) controls. These features were originally planned to be merged into the free version in April but required more development to improve how they work on sites with large product/download catalogs.

The WooCommerce controls include 18 conditional visibility rules with full support for products with variable pricing. It allows users to show or hide blocks based on products, cart contents, customer purchase history, and more.

“There is one notable change to the product-based rules,” Diego said. “Previously, you had to select which product you wanted to target with the visibility conditions. While this is still possible, Block Visibility can now detect the current product.

“This functionality is extremely useful on product pages, single product templates, and product grids (Query blocks).”

The EDD controls allow users to show or hide blocks based on downloads, cart contents, customer purchase history, and more. Since EDD doesn’t have as many block-powered layouts as WooCommerce, Diego did not include the “Detect current product” feature.

“The EDD visibility control currently has no product-based rules,” he said. “If greater block support is added to EDD in the future, such as an EDD Products block that supports inner blocks, expect more functionality.”

Block Visibility 3.1.0 also adds a new Command Palette command to “Manage Visibility Presets,” which requires WordPress 6.3+.

image credit: Block Visibility repository – PR #84

Diego said he doesn’t plan on adding any new integrations to the plugin but will continue improving existing controls. Now that all the features from the Pro version have been merged into the free plugin, users who have the Pro version installed can deactivate it after upgrading to version 3.1.0.

by Sarah Gooding at September 23, 2023 02:07 AM under Plugins

September 22, 2023

WPTavern: WordPress Plugin Review Team Onboards New Members, Releases Plugin to Flag Common Errors

WordPress’ Plugin Review Team continues to dig out from under a massive backlog that has grown to 1,260 plugins awaiting review. Developers submitting new plugins can expect to wait at least 91 days, according to the notice on the queue today.

Currently there are 1,241 plugins awaiting review,” Automattic-sponsored Plugin Review team member Alvaro Gómez said earlier this week.

“We are painstakingly aware of this. We check that number every day and realize how this delay is affecting plugin authors.”

Although the backlog seems to be getting worse, Gómez published an update outlining new systems the team is putting in place to get the situation under control. He likened it to patching a hole in a boat, as opposed to simply prioritizing bailing out the water.

“During the last six months, the Plugin review team has worked on documenting its processes, training new members, and improving its tools,” he said. “Now, thanks to your patience and support, the tide is about to turn.”

The team has now onboarded two rounds of new members, with three more reviewers added recently, and has a system in place to make this easier in the future. After receiving more than 40 applications to join the team, the form will be closing at the end of September.

They also sent plugin authors still waiting in the queue an email asking them to self-check their plugins to meet basic security standards, as another effort to mitigate the growing backlog.

“We find ourselves correcting the same three or four errors on +95% of plugins and this is not a good use of our time,” Gómez said. “Once authors confirm that their plugins meet these basic requirements, we will proceed with the review.”

A new plugin called Plugin Check has just been published to WordPress.org for plugin authors to self-review for common errors, which will eventually be integrated into the plugin submission process.

“Once the PCP is merged with this other plugin that the Performance team has been working on, it will provide checks for a lot of other things,” Gómez said. “When this is completed, we will be in a better spot to take in feedback and make improvements.

“In the short term, we are going to ask authors to test their plugins using the PCP before submitting them, but our goal is to integrate the plugin as part of the submission process and run automated checks.”

So far plugin authors have reported a few bugs and issues with the plugin not recognizing files or giving unintelligible errors. These issues can be reported on the GitHub repo, which is temporarily hosted on the 10up GitHub account but will be moving to WordPress.org in the near future.

by Sarah Gooding at September 22, 2023 05:51 PM under plugin review

Do The Woo Community: WooBits: Accessibility, Diversity, Community, WooSesh and More

This week, diversity at WP Accessibility Day, WooSesh, Cart and Checkout Blocks and more WordPress and WooCommerce community.

>> The post WooBits: Accessibility, Diversity, Community, WooSesh and More appeared first on Do the Woo - a WooCommerce Builder Community .

by BobWP at September 22, 2023 01:04 PM under WooBits

WPTavern: WordPress Accessibility Day 2023 Announces Diverse Speaker Lineup, Doubles Sponsors from Previous Year

WP Accessibility Day (WPAD), an independent 24-hour virtual conference, has published its schedule for the upcoming event on September 27, 2023. Co-lead organizer Amber Hinds reports that more than 1,248 people have registered for the event so far with attendees across 30 different countries. Approximately 50% of attendees are from the U.S.

WPAD has attracted an influx of new voices this year. All speakers, excluding sponsored sessions, are first-time speakers at the event.

“We were nervous initially about speaker applicants, but we actually received a lot more speaker applications than last year and also more applications that were higher quality than in previous years,” Hinds said. “It was hard to decide!”

The keynote address will feature a conversation between Jennison Asuncion, co-founder of Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD), and Joe Dolson, an accessibility consultant and co-founder of WordPress Accessibility Day. Attendees will learn how to perform usability and accessibility tests on their websites, how to build an accessible WordPress pages and posts using the block editor, simple ways to make email more accessible, how to understand color and contrast requirements in WCAG 2, and more.

Based on the stats for speakers (of people who opted to give the info), WPAD’s organizers have succeeded at recruiting a diverse lineup for the event:

  • 10 countries
  • 67% female, 30% male, 3% Nonbinary
  • 14% LGBTQ
  • 41% non-white identifying
  • 2 first time speakers who have never spoken at any event.
  • 11 of the 27 speakers identify as having a disability. (41%) – There are speakers who identify as blind/low vision, deaf or hard of hearing, have limited mobility, and learning disabilities.

“These were the hardest decisions we’ve had to make yet in selecting the WordPress Accessibility Day speakers,” Speaker Team lead Joe Dolson said. “There were so many truly excellent ideas proposed. As a result, our speakers include people who work across many different aspects of the web – inside and outside the WordPress community. I feel like we’ve ended up with an excellent cross section of topics, so we have something to offer for developers, policy makers, content creators, or community organizers.”

WPAD secured non-profit status earlier this year through a fiscal sponsorship partnership with Knowbility, an Austin-based digital accessibility advocate and services provider. One of the reasons the organizers wanted to manage it independently of the WordPress Foundation was to reserve the option to do things like pay speakers for their time and expertise. Speaker pay is one expenditure for the event, which is supported by corporate and community sponsors.

Hinds said it was easier to attract sponsors this year and that the sponsors team received positive responses fairly quickly. They also added a microsponsorship option earlier this year (previously it was only on the registration form) and were able to recruit more businesses as microsponsors.

The team’s goal this year was to get enough sponsorships to cover the cost of the event itself, make a donation to Knowbility (part of the event’s fiscal sponsorship agreement with them), and have enough leftover to cover year-round expenses, such as Google workspace, Buffer, domain registration, and hosting.

Hinds said the organization met its sponsorship goals at most tiers, due to the hard work of the Sponsors team leads Bet Hannon and Joe Hall, along with the generosity of the community in supporting the event.

“We are thrilled to have doubled the number of sponsors this year over last year,” Hannon said. “I think this reflects the increasing awareness about accessibility as an issue to be addressed, as well as the wider WordPress community coming together to sponsor an event providing high quality accessibility education.”

New in 2023: WPAD to Broadcast via Zoom

In addition to a whole new crop of speakers this year, WPAD is offering t-shirts for the first time as a thank you gift to attendees who want to make a donation when they register.

“We had a lot of people ask us last year how they could get a t-shirt, but they were only available to organizers, speakers, and volunteers,” Hinds said. “This year they’re available during registration so anyone can get one.”

Last year the event was broadcast via an embedded YouTube video on the WPAD website with third-party embeds for chat/Q&A and the live transcript.

“We got feedback from attendees that this did not work well because they didn’t have control of the layout of the video,” Hinds said. “It was particularly limiting for attendees who rely on the sign language interpreters; they needed the interpreter video to be larger. Other people said that they found the interpretation to be distracting or they needed the slides to be bigger so they would be easier to read.”

The 2023 event will be live streamed using Zoom, which recently introduced a sign language interpretation view that allows hosts to assign interpreters.

“Attendees can choose to view the sign language interpretation in a separate window,” Hinds said. “With this new feature available, we decided to change to Zoom webinars. We have one long 24-hour webinar that people can jump in and out of as they see fit, and each attendee can set a view for speakers, slides, signers, and captions that works best for them.”

Registration for the event is free and it’s still open. Attendees have the opportunity to receive virtual swag and win prizes from the sponsors. Organizers have also gotten the conference pre-approved for continuing education credits for the International Association of Accessibility Professionals Web Accessibility Specialist (WAS) and Certified Professional in Core Competencies (CPACC) certifications.

by Sarah Gooding at September 22, 2023 03:49 AM under accessiblity

WPTavern: Community Team Invites Organizers to Apply for Hosting Next Generation WordPress Events

Attendees of NextGen WordCamp Bengaluru – image credit: WordPress.org

WordPress’ Community team is evolving the WordCamp format to promote adoption, training, and networking for professionals, leaving the flagship events to focus more on connection and inspiration. This change opens the door for more creative concepts around the events’ new mission:

WordPress events spark innovation and adoption by way of accessible training and networking for users, builders, designers, and extenders. We celebrate community by accelerating 21st-century skills, professional opportunities, and partnerships for WordPressers of today and tomorrow.

A group of eight pilot events were confirmed in June, and two recent “NextGen” WordPress events have already happened, including a community-building workshop in Japan, and WordCamp Bengaluru, a one-day event featuring the local culture and a walking tour of the city.

The Community team has compiled a list of more than three dozen concepts to inspire NextGen event organizers. The list spans a wide range of ideas, such as college campus based groups, sponsor networking days, show and tell night, job fairs, events for agencies, WordPress retreats, and many more.

Anyone who is interested to host one of these new event types is invited to fill out a form that the Community team has created to capture ideas for future events – either before the end of 2023, or during the first half of 2024. Organizers will be asked to identify a category for their proposed event from among the following:

  • WP expertise level (beginners, intermediate, advanced)
  • Focused activity (training, recruiting, networking, contributing, conferencing, etc)
  • Job status (students, fresh graduates, job seekers, freelancers, business owners, etc)
  • Identity-based (women, castes, BIPOC, Latinx, LGBTQI+, tribes, age, etc)
  • Content topic focused (designers, block development, SEO, etc)

Although the form is presented as a survey, it’s more of an interest form, which is why it collects the respondent’s contact information. Respondents who indicate they are willing to have a discussion about their ideas may be contacted by the Community team.

by Sarah Gooding at September 22, 2023 01:26 AM under News

September 21, 2023

Post Status: Plugin Team Sees a Shift Starting • Browser Interoperability Issues • WCUS Q&A • Enterprise WP

This Week at WordPress.org (September 18, 2023)

🔌 Plugin Check plugin is now available🛜 Browser Compatibility Issues❓#WCUS Q&A Continued🎧 Enterprise Clients and the Business of WordPress

Community Summit Notes

Thanks for reading our WP dot .org roundup! Each week we are highlighting the news and discussions coming from the good folks making WordPress possible. If you or your company create products or services that use WordPress, you need to be engaged with them and their work. Be sure to share this resource with your product and project managers.

Are you interested in giving back and contributing your time and skills to WordPress.org? Start Here ›

Get our weekly WordPress community news digest — Post Status’ Week in Review — covering the WP/Woo news plus significant writing and podcasts. It’s also available in our newsletter.

Post Status

You — and your whole team can join Post Status too!

Build your network. Learn with others. Find your next job — or your next hire. Read the Post Status newsletter. ✉ Listen to podcasts. 🎙 Follow @Post_Status 🐦 and LinkedIn. 💼

This article was published at Post Status — the community for WordPress professionals.

by Courtney Robertson at September 21, 2023 06:30 PM under WordPress News

Do The Woo Community: Woo Agency Growth and Enterprise with Josh and Zach Webber

Zach and Josh from Big Red Jelly share insights on agency growth and enterprise as a WooCommerce and WordPress digital agency.

>> The post Woo Agency Growth and Enterprise with Josh and Zach Webber appeared first on Do the Woo - a WooCommerce Builder Community .

by BobWP at September 21, 2023 01:00 PM under Robert Jacobi

September 20, 2023

WPTavern: WordPress.com Plugin Pages Add Download Link for Using Plugins on Self-Hosted Sites

WordPress.com plugin pages have been updated to include a download link for WordPress.org plugins listed in the .com directory. These are the listings that are scraped from WordPress.org. The plugins are available for free on WordPress.org for self-hosted sites but can only be used on WordPress.com with a paid subscription.

Logged out view of WordPress.com plugin pages

The text in the sidebar includes a link to an article explaining the difference between WordPress.org and WordPress.com. It appears on both the logged-out and logged-in views:

This plugin is available for download to be used on your WordPress self-hosted installation.

Themes hosted on WordPress.com have a similar notice with a link to download the theme and use it on a self-hosted site.

This change comes as the result of developers raising concerns about WordPress.com plugin listings outranking WordPress.org on Google Search in some instances. During that discussion, many developers were surprised to learn that their plugins created for WordPress.org were also listed on WordPress.com as only available with a paid subscription. Patchstack responded by updating its readme file to ensure that WordPress.com users and visitors are made aware that the plugin is available for free in the official WordPress plugin repository. This response may not be necessary now, unless developers want to include a direct link to their plugins.

In a discussion on Post Status Slack, some plugin developers said they would prefer a link to the actual plugin page where they can see and participate in reviews. The omission of a link back to WordPress.org may be intentional, as it would take users off of the .com site, which does not facilitate customers upgrading to paid plans in order to use plugins.

Some developers had also asked Automattic CEO Matt Mullenweg to noindex those pages, but he said that WordPress.com users should also be able to search Google for the listings.

Some developers have asked to know what percentage of their active installs come from WordPress.com vs. WordPress.org, or other hosting platforms. Mullenweg said there are currently no reports for this but that the data could be interesting.

“If people are providing more distribution to unaltered plugins, I think that’s great,” Mullenweg said during the discussion last week. “Happy for all our plugins to be duplicated and distributed by every host and site on the planet.”

When asked if WordPress.org could extract the data for known plugin distributors, like WordPress.com, Mullenweg said, “.com or any other host could share plugin info if it’s allowed by their privacy policy. Also it’s fairly trivial to get plugin info from crawling sites.”

by Sarah Gooding at September 20, 2023 08:27 PM under Plugins

WPTavern: #91 – Vagelis Papaioannou on How to Learn to Use WordPress and Help With Events


[00:00:00] Nathan Wrigley: Welcome to the Jukebox podcast. From WP Tavern. My name is Nathan Wrigley.

Jukebox is a podcast which is dedicated to all things WordPress. The people, the events, the plugins, the blocks, the themes, and in this case, how to learn to use WordPress and help with events.

If you’d like to subscribe to the podcast, you can do that by searching for WP Tavern in your podcast player of choice. Or by going to WPTavern.com forward slash feed forward slash podcast. And you can copy that URL into most podcast players.

If you have a topic that you’d like us to feature on the podcast, I’m keen to hear from you and hopefully get you, or your idea, featured on the show. Head to WPTavern.com forward slash contact forward slash jukebox.

So on the podcast today, we have a Vagelis Papaioannou. Vagelis is a software engineer from Greece. His journey with coding began during his elementary school years. In an experimental coding class. This sparked a lifelong passion within him.

His love for WordPress dates back to the early versions. For the last eight to nine years, he has actively participated in the Greek WordPress community, engaging in various roles, such as organizing WordCamps and meetups. Vagelis also contributes to multiple teams, cherishing the small contributions that allow everyone to make a difference. He also serves as the project translation lead for the Greek language.

Vagelis, although a self-confessed introvert, shares his initial struggles with being a part of the community and attending local meetups. He encourages people to step outside their comfort zones, and attend events like WordCamps and meetups, where they’re likely to discover a welcoming and friendly atmosphere. Vagelis recounts his own experience of attending such events, initially feeling scared, but eventually having an enjoyable time, making many lasting friendships along the way.

He talks about how local meetups are more casual gatherings than WordCamps. People come together to talk about WordPress, learn, and spend time with like-minded individuals. From meetups by the sea to forest walks, these events offer opportunities for both education and social engagement.

On the subject of WordCamps, Vagelis unravels the magic behind these larger multi-day events, with presentations and a contributor day. He emphasizes that contribution to the community doesn’t necessarily require coding skills, and encourages more people to get involved. WordCamps are not only platforms for learning and exchanging ideas, but they also provide a space for attendees to have fun, network, and explore all manner of other opportunities.

We talk about the importance of the code of conduct at WordCamps. This code ensures that participants know that they’re going to have a safe and inclusive experience. With attendees joining from all corners of the globe, these events attract a diverse range of individuals who are passionate about the software and the community.

We then talk about the effort required to organize these events. Vagelis explains why he’s willing to dedicate his time and energy to be a part of such complex projects. He talks about the benefits participants gain from taking an active role, whether as an organizer, speaker or volunteer.

As Vagelis shares his personal experiences in organizing and participating in events like WordCamp, Athens, he strongly advocates for more community involvement, and highlights the need for new organizers to get involved, to allow the community to meet up once again.

We then get into a discussion of other ways that you can be involved. This time in the Learn project, which is making freely available materials so that people can learn about WordPress at a time that suits them. Vagelis talks about what the Learn team does, and how you can join them. He discusses how the team works using GitHub for collaboration and accommodating individuals with various skills and abilities.

From the educational content available on the learn.wordpress.org website., To the valuable connections made through hallway chats, Vagelis emphasizes the power and importance of the WordPress community.

If you’re a seasoned WordPress enthusiast, or just starting your journey in contributions, this episode is for you.

If you’re interested in finding out more, you can find all of the links in the show notes by heading over to WPTavern.com forward slash podcast. Where you’ll find all the other episodes as well.

And so without further delay, I bring you Vagelis Papaioannou.

I am joined on the podcast today by Vagelis Papaioannou. Hello Vagelis!

[00:05:27] Vagelis Papaioannou: Hello Nathan. Hello.

[00:05:28] Nathan Wrigley: Very nice to have you on the podcast today. Just to give you a little bit of orientation, right at the outset we’re going to be talking about WordPress events. We might well dip our toes into WordCamp Europe. We might talk about local meetups and WordCamps in general. And then we might also pivot to talk about something which Vagelis is interested in, the training team.

But before that, just to paint a picture of who you are and what your experience is with WordPress. I wonder Vagelis if you wouldn’t mind just giving us your bio. You can start as early as you like. Anything you want to say about you and WordPress.

[00:06:04] Vagelis Papaioannou: Yeah of course. My name is Vagelis, I’m from Greece. I was raised and born in Athens and I live in Thessaloniki for the last 21 years. I’m a software engineer and my journey with coding started at elementary school where we had this experimental class of coding and I got really into it. And then that just made my passion.

So regarding WordPress, I’ve been using WordPress since the version one point something, I can’t really remember. I was using b2 and then I jumped over to WordPress. The last eight, nine years I’ve been part of the Greek community of WordPress. I’m trying to go to build as much as possible I can.

And I’m a WordCamp organiser. I’m a meetup organiser. I do contribute across multiple teams like training, testing or photos and all that small bits that everyone can do. I’m also the P.T. for the Greek language translation. Yeah that’s pretty much it I guess.

[00:07:14] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah that’s a lot. That really is a lot. It’s an absolute pleasure to have you on. We didn’t discuss this in our pre recording chat, but I’m just wondering if you could paint the picture for us of what the state of the WordPress community in Greece is like. Just judging by my accent you can probably tell that I’m from the UK, and we might have a very different complexion here.

We’ve obviously just this year had a huge WordPress event in Greece. WordCamp Europe was held in Athens earlier this year. If I’m looking at it from the outside I get the impression that the Greek community is thriving because they put on events like WordCamp Europe, but I don’t know if that’s the case.

How is it being a Greek WordPress user? Are there plenty of events? Is the community thriving or is it in a different state?

[00:07:59] Vagelis Papaioannou: Well the community is pretty big. We have a huge Facebook group with almost 20,000 people. We do two major events, two WordCamps, one in Athens and one in Thessaloniki. Sadly COVID 19 hit us really hard, so we had to stop for a while. We also stopped the meetups but we’re getting back to it. We’ve done like 10, 11 meetups the last year in Thessaloniki, and I know there are plans to do more meetups in other areas of Greece.

We also in planning of a special WordCamp. We try to figure out where to do that and how to plan it so we can apply for it on WordCamp Central. And yeah we have a lot of users, lots of people trying to translate, we have a lot of coders.

We also have a lot of people actually working in key companies regarding to WordPress, like Automattic and stuff like that. So yeah, we’re doing good I guess. But because I’m that kind of person, I know we could do better in some fields, but that’s a whole different story.

[00:09:10] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah I guess there’s always room for improvement. I can completely sympathise though with the whole COVID thing. I think it’s fair to say that it put the brakes on in the UK and I don’t think the community has quite got back to where it was. Things are beginning again. There are various different WordCamps and meetups and things like that which are coming back from being online.

Broadly speaking I think a lot of them carried on in an online way, but I’m not sure that the interest was maintained. And so a lot of them are now coming back and hoping to be in the real world once more. But the flagship event, one of the bigger events that we had in the UK was WordCamp London and, as yet, it has not re emerged. So fingers crossed.

[00:09:52] Vagelis Papaioannou: Yeah. I’ve been on the last WordCamp London and I had a blast. It was a great event. We had great fun and I really hope that it’s coming back.

[00:10:01] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah fingers crossed for that as well. We’re going to talk a little bit about local meetups and what have you, and WordCamp Europe in particular. Let’s begin there. Let’s begin with WordCamp Europe and paint a picture.

Prior to that though I wouldn’t mind having a conversation around the fact that it’s very obvious to somebody like you and somebody like me, who probably obsess more than is healthy for us about WordPress, but we know that there’s a community. We’re well aware that these events take place. There was a time though when I was a user of WordPress, I was using nothing else, it was probably about two years into my journey with WordPress that I actually noticed that there was a community at all.

Prior to that I was simply going to the .org websites, downloading the software, using that software, and then you know rinse and repeat, building websites and so on. And then I can’t remember where, it was possibly on social media or something, I remember seeing a picture. The collection of people with WordPress T-shirts on standing in a hallway or something. And I was thinking well that’s curious, what are they doing?

And then obviously as time went on, it occurred to me oh there are these events. So given that the listenership to this podcast could be anybody, do you want to just talk a little bit about what WordPress events are? What they endeavor to do? How they are organised? Whether that be big events, little events, meetups and so on.

[00:11:21] Vagelis Papaioannou: Definitely. Well first of all I need to reassure everyone that’s listening to this that I’m an introvert. So it wasn’t easy for me to be a part of a community, any community. Or just go in a random place in a local meetup, open the door and just stay there with a bunch of random folks.

So if you feel like that, just come to any event even if it’s a WordCamp, a meetup, gathering, whatever. Just come, say hi and we’re all really welcoming and friendly. And you’re going to find someone who can really make you feel comfortable.

I was aware of the community for a long time before I even managed to go on a local meetup here in Thessaloniki. And I remember me being there, just sitting on a chair, and I didn’t feel like talking to anyone. I was kind of scared. Scared grown up man, just in a strange place with other folks talking about software, which I love.

So the next time was better and I actually had fun. I made a few contacts which I can now call friends. And that’s pretty much what a local meetup is. It’s just a gathering. We just get a soda, we talk about WordPress. We may have a presentation, we may have snacks. It’s a cool two hours spending with friends around WordPress. That’s pretty much it.

I remember our last meetup, it was a month ago and we did it on Thessaloniki seaside. So we had like this beautiful sea view and we were just 20 people talking about random stuff. And then the idea struck, and someone said, shall we do another one? But like in Naousa, which is a different place, a different town. There’s a forest there. We can walk through the forest and go eat and do some stuff. And we agreed to do that. So that’s our next meetup. It’s on September the 2nd. So it’s pretty informal.

And the same goes for WorldCamps, but WorldCamp is a bigger event. It’s usually like a couple of days event. There’s the presentation day and then there’s a contributor day where we gather and contribute.

Just a side note, you don’t have to code to be a contributor. You can contribute in so many ways and we do need more contributors to help in so many teams.

So yeah WordCamps, like I said, WordCamps are informal. You can come to learn something but if you feel that you can’t learn anything you can just come and have fun with us. Have a nice lunch, meet new people, exchange ideas. And maybe at the end of the day you learn something new. I don’t want to digress so that’s pretty much it.

[00:14:11] Nathan Wrigley: No I think that’s great. That was a really nice summary. And I think a really important point that you made there, especially for people who’ve never been to these events before, is the no code piece. That is to say, you really genuinely don’t need to know a line of code, you don’t need to know any of that whatsoever to enjoy the event.

Because usually, especially at the larger events, there’s a whole broad range of things that are being presented, workshops that are being given. Yeah, some of it will be about the code but a lot of it will be about other aspects of life on the internet. So it may be SEO, or marketing, or design, or something like that. So there’s definitely something for everybody.

And also, I’ll throw into the mix, the somewhat undermentioned but very important hallway track. And this is simply when you’re not at a presentation. This is just hanging out, being in the corridor, chatting to people. And my understanding from chatting to people over the years is that quite a lot of serendipitous things happen during those hallway chats. You know friendships are created, businesses are formed, partnerships are made during those kinds of hallway random meetups. And it’s those things in particular are really nice.

[00:15:24] Vagelis Papaioannou: And you also get the vibe of the market. So if you’re into that market, you get the vibe of where are we heading to? And that’s a good thing to always stay up to date.

[00:15:36] Nathan Wrigley: I think also it might be worth mentioning that there is an enforced code of conduct. So there really are kind of rules and guidelines around what is acceptable. So if you have any fears or worries around that, what your participation would look like? How you would feel? How comfortable you would be or what have you, there are definite guidelines to make sure that your experience is as friendly as possible. Let’s put it that way.

So WordCamps are the big ones. Then we’ve got these more ad hoc local meetups where really you’re probably just capturing people from the local area. Maybe a few miles around, as opposed to people getting on aeroplanes. They typically happen more like once a month or something like that.

Why have you been so keen to contribute to these things though? Because my understanding is, especially an event like WordCamp Europe, you only have to attend to realise how breathtakingly large that undertaking is. The enterprise of putting on an event for several thousand people, coming from all over the globe.

The fact that it’s, the catering is done, the internet is provided, there’s AV, there’s translations, there’s people standing around with the correct T-shirt on, helpfully guiding people all over. What I’m trying to paint a picture of is just how breathtakingly large these things are, and complex are. So I’m just wondering, why do you give up your time in this way? What do you gain from it?

[00:16:57] Vagelis Papaioannou: It is indeed a massive event especially the Europe, US and Asia. I mean it’s about giving back I guess, to the community because we all get something out of it. I’m that kind of person that I believe we should always try to give back, even if we don’t get enough. We should give more than we get. This is how I work.

However, about WordCamp Europe, yes it was a massive thing. It required so many hours of work. Oh and I forgot to say that most of the times it is fun to get involved in these kind of stuff. And WordCamp Europe was fun for most of the time.

At the end of the day it is a massive event. It’s our country and we’re a bunch of people that we had to help to organise a good event, if you know what I mean. It’s always about giving back. I don’t have something specific in my mind. I never go out to try to find contacts. I never try to go out and do business or whatever. I just want to give back.

[00:18:01] Nathan Wrigley: Certain sense of pleasure from being there, helping, making sure that it all runs smoothly. I can totally empathise with that.

Okay so again, thinking about the listeners who have never been to such an event as that. I described the kind of things that might be on offer. You talked about the fact that volunteers, community members, helping out at these events are a crucial part of that puzzle.

Are you able to just tell us some of the different roles? Now you might just cherry pick some that you know top of your mind. But just to give a flavor of the kind of things that you could be doing should you dip your toes into the water and offer your time at one of these events. What are the kind of things that you might find yourself involved with?

[00:18:45] Vagelis Papaioannou: Well it’s easy to find something to do on these kinds of events. I mean if you can use Gutenberg you can join the website team. If you can design you can go with the design team. That’s pretty straightforward.

But if you just want to volunteer and that means that you will be there at the three days of the event, and you will all be spending time for the event while being there. Which is a different thing than being an organiser, because we had to work like months, several months before the event. So if you just want to be a volunteer you can do so many things from registration, or from helping the sponsors, from making sure everything is okay. From sitting on a corner and waiting for someone to ask you something.

There are so many roles, and I believe that volunteers are a huge part of any event, even if it’s WordCamp Europe or a local WordCamp. Without the volunteers we can do nothing. And also we need to make clear that the organisers are also volunteers. I had a chat with multiple people, and it looks like some folks believe that we’re getting paid or we get something like a benefit or I don’t know, whatever. But we don’t, we’re just volunteers just like the rest of the volunteers and we are all equal during this event.

[00:20:08] Nathan Wrigley: As one of the lead organisers, given that you probably have months and months of work involved in it, well probably years is more the correct way of describing it. But given that you’ve probably got to make trips to the event, now you mentioned that you don’t get paid, but is there a system whereby, if you’re at that level and you’re organising things and you have to, I don’t know, let’s say for example you don’t live in Greece so you needed to make a journey to Athens. Are there any scenarios in which those things are paid for? Or are you always dipping into your own reserves for the WordCamp organising endeavor?

[00:20:42] Vagelis Papaioannou: I guess you can just look for a sponsor for a company that would like to sponsor you to do that. But in my case I covered everything. I’m in Greece, I’m just 500 kilometers away from Athens, so that wasn’t a big thing. But for other people coming from other countries, and if you consider that this is during summertime, and summertime in Greece the prices are going high, because of the tourism and all that stuff. They have to book hotels just like did, so it’s a big expense to be fair. I mean, it’s a few thousand euros to be able to go to venue visits and then go to the event, and stay for a week.

[00:21:24] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah that’s interesting. I certainly have met people who have been sponsored to attend these events. Yeah thank you for that.

We should probably also talk about the affordable nature of these events, because typically if you were to go to a three day conference, well in WordCamp’s case it’s often two days, and then there’s something called a contributor day which we’ll get onto in a minute.

The cost of these tickets is really low. If you were to attend an event of similar size and scope elsewhere, I feel that you might have a very high ticket price. But WordCamps don’t have this ticket price. Now I understand that some of the money is offset from the sponsors, but typically they’re very affordable to attend in the region of, I don’t know 40, 50, 60 euros, something along those lines.

So I just wanted to raise that as a point. You don’t need to have deep pockets if you want to attend. And if you’ve got local WordCamps it’s very likely that the cost will be low as well. In fact, in many cases, I think it would be true to say that the cost of your ticket probably wouldn’t even cover the food.

[00:22:27] Vagelis Papaioannou: You always get your money back. And I mean our local WordCamps cost 25 euros. And you get lunch, you get swag, which swag is really, really important. And when someone goes to WordCamp Europe for the first time and you travel abroad, just bring an extra bag with you. You’re going to need it. I’m always bringing an extra bag when I go to WordCamp abroad.

So yeah you always get your money back. You get coffees, you get refreshments, lunch. WordCamp Europe was 50 euros. It’s really cheap because if you consider other events of that scale, the ticket could be like 600 euros easily. So yeah these are really cheap events.

[00:23:09] Nathan Wrigley: I’ll also point out the fact that there are, there’s quite a few initiatives. Many of them actually I believe begun by a previous WordCamp Europe over many years. So for example, if you have children that you need to be taking with you, that is also something which at WordCamp Europe at least, I can’t speak about the other ones, there are facilities provided for that.

And also great lengths have been gone to, to make sure that the events are accessible as possible. So by that I might mean that for example, if you need the use of a wheelchair or something like that, great lengths have gone to to make sure that you can access all of the different parts of the event.

But also that things like live translations are done, and not by an AI robot sitting in the corner but by a bank of real human beings, and all of those things really, they’re amazing. I’m quite proud in a sense that the WordPress community sees those things as important enough to spend the money on, to spend the time on, to get right.

[00:24:13] Vagelis Papaioannou: Yeah that’s really great. And this is again done by volunteers, so we should just sit back and realise how much work we need to do in order to get these done. This year in Europe we had childcare and we also had workshops for children, which was really great. Every event should be inclusive, and accessibility should be our first concern.

However this is something that brings a lot of drama into the community for numerous reasons. But yeah we should all help everybody, everyone, every single one to come to WordCamp and have fun.

[00:24:56] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah nice. So I think we’ve painted a picture there hopefully of an event which is not only affordable, if you can make it there. The cost of the ticket is affordable, but also inclusive. There’s a whole variety of different things, you don’t need to be into one particular thing aka code.

If you want to attend, it’s very likely that you’ll meet some people, make some friendships. And in my case I think it’s fair to say that quite a lot of real, proper, genuine friendships have been built up from chatting to people who were stood next to me that I never knew just five minutes before.

So they’re the big events. Now I can’t remember whether you mentioned whether you’re a part of a more local meetup, but I think if we could just get into that quickly.

[00:25:42] Vagelis Papaioannou: I’m organising me and a few friends, I’m going to call them friends because after all these years I consider them to be my friends. We’re organising the Thessaloniki meetups, which is a monthly meetup. We try to do presentations. We also have a workshop going on about creating what we called the first community block theme, but we didn’t do it fast enough. Someone else did that, but that’s fine. And we also tried to do a few outdoors meetups. The next one is in a month or so in the city near Thessaloniki.

Local meetups are great. We just have a beautiful small place, sponsored by a local business here in Thessaloniki. We gather once a month, we have some snacks, we have some refreshments, we exchange ideas, we have a laugh, we do the presentation and then everyone goes home. And then we just wait for the next one.

It’s really hard to organise these kind of events. It really needs some time to get them done correctly, and it’s always done by our personal time, so it’s not that easy. But it’s fun, and people really like these kind of events.

Oh, I forgot to mention, these events are free, so anyone can just come and join us. There’s no ticket or whatever. We do have a sponsor which helps a lot for snacks and refreshments, and we do have another sponsor for the venue, so we’re pretty much covered and yeah, it’s fun.

[00:27:22] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah so much more frequent. The cadence is typically I think once a month, something like that. Much more local, so there’s no accommodation requirements. You just make your way there. Often in the evening when the work day is over. A couple of hours of presentation, like you said a few snacks and that’s the way it goes.

So a real nice way to keep up to date with your local WordPressers. And I think these things, once they kickstart themselves after the pandemic, I think really just events like that really do underpin the whole community. Without them I don’t know where we’d be in all honesty.

[00:27:55] Vagelis Papaioannou: It’s an important part of the community, the meetups, I believe.

[00:27:59] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah I think so too. Let’s move on. Let’s pivot because we’ve got something else to talk about. So this is something called the training team. Obviously it’s connected with WordPress but I wouldn’t really say that I know too much about this. During the process of this interview hopefully I will be learning a lot about it as well.

Let’s just lay the bedrock. What is the training team? What’s its purpose? How long has it been around? Any place you want to begin there really.

[00:28:23] Vagelis Papaioannou: Well the training team is brilliant. There’s so much content for anyone and everyone in there. And how I met the training team. A year ago I wanted some resources about our local meetup, and I was talking with someone from the marketing team, and they told me just go to the training team and get some content.

What’s a training team? I’ve never heard of it. And then I joined the training team and I’ve seen that there are so much good content in there. There are courses, there are lesson plans, there is so much content for all different levels of WordPress users or developers. For the last year it grew so much.

There are two main things in training team, tutorials and lesson plans. You can follow a tutorial and then something new, or you can get a lesson plan and use it on a local meetup, or on your class and teach the others something new. And in order to do that there are a bunch of volunteers working day and night creating content.

But most importantly keeping the content up to date, because that’s the most important thing. Whenever a new version of WordPress comes out and there are changes, we have to go back, review the content and do the appropriate edits. And also because we’re trying to be inclusive, we want to translate that content, and this is where I fit in. I try to translate as much content as possible in Greek. And I also have on the website in order to do some patterns, to do that translation easier for the translators.

And now we’re in the state where we’re trying to find more people to contribute in translations because if we manage to translate all that content then there is no excuse for someone to say, I don’t know how to do that because everything is in there. So you can really learn something new every day from the training team. Which, by the way, can be found, this is confusing, at learn.wordpress.org. So training team is a team, but the website is learn, and this is where you go to learn WordPress. That’s the idea.

[00:30:41] Nathan Wrigley: Do you know if there was a reason if you like, why the team was given a lot more focus and attention more recently? What I’m wondering is, we spoke a little while ago about the effect of things like the pandemic, and effect that that had on the community. I don’t know if it’s coincidental or if it’s intentional that more effort seems to be being put recently into things like providing training materials.

There seems to be a lot more of that being created, but I see a lot more of it being mentioned in different parts of the WordPress ecosystem. So I didn’t know if it was an endeavor just to bolster what we’ve already got, or if it was trying to react to, I don’t know, community dwindling, something like that.

[00:31:21] Vagelis Papaioannou: It’s probably both. I also think that training team has more resources now. By saying resources I mean more people, and more people join every day, and the more people we get the more content we have. And it looks like it’s getting a lot of support from the community and also the team leads.

The previous ones,, and the ones we currently have did a really great job. I’m not going to get into names because I’m going to forget someone and it’s not fair. But they’re all great, and they all did so much about the training team. And I think this is part of the success of the team. It’s going to get better, I’m pretty sure about it.

[00:32:02] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah so obviously it’s putting out content, it’s keeping that content up to date. WordPress is going through, well certainly in the last several years has gone through some real transformational changes. And it does feel like we’re with the advent of WordPress 6.2 and 6.3 and probably 6.4, there’s going to be a lot of changes, made and so communicating those changes is going to be really important.

You mentioned that the team leads have been great. You also mentioned that there seems to be a steady trickle of people heading in your direction, wanting to help out with the team. How does that team organise itself? How do you come to decisions about, okay, we’ll make this piece of content, but we won’t make that piece of content just yet? Where do you meet? How often do you meet? What platforms are you using? And so on.

[00:32:47] Vagelis Papaioannou: Well there’s a weekly meeting happening in the Make Slack of the training team. If anyone listening to this and doesn’t use Slack, just download Slack and join. How do we even call that? It’s always confusing. Well the Make Slack which is where all the WordPress folks are gathering around, and all the teams and all the info. And you can get really mad really quickly because of the massive amount of the information. But don’t worry about it just join training team. There’s a weekly meeting there.

And then we do use GitHub, but don’t be scared if you hear of GitHub. We don’t really use it only for coding, we also use it to raise issues. And by raising an issue it can be a lesson plan idea, or a content idea. And this is where all the review is going on, and all of the conversation. And then all of a sudden the content is getting published into the website. It’s really easy. Everyone can contribute.

I forgot to mention that I’m dyslexic. So it’s really hard for me to do many things related to languages and stuff, but I do manage to contribute successfully on those teams without any problem. And whenever I need a hand, a helping hand, there’s always someone to help you.

You can also facilitate an online meetup in training team. That’s another great thing training team does. We do online meetups, and you can learn how to code custom Gutenberg block using React or JSX. Or you can just learn how to use a block, like the very first steps and one to do using Gutenberg.

[00:34:29] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah I think it’s really remarkable the rate at which I’m seeing content being produced. And also a shame in a sense that it doesn’t get mentioned quite as much as I wish it did. I have to sometimes go looking for these things or subscribe to an RSS feed. But if everybody in the WordPress community was just familiar with that URL, learn.wordpress.org, I think you’d be hard pressed to find nothing there which should be of interest to you.

Whether you’re kind of an expert in building blocks, or whether you just want some primer, some kind of 101 of how to begin using WordPress. It is increasingly an amazing resource. And so bravo for all of the things that are being done there.

I’m just curious about the kind of jobs that might be needed, because I’ve seen video content. So obviously at some point somebody needed to sit down with a screen and record that stuff. But presumably there was some kind of script that was created for that. I’ve seen lots of written tutorials. I’ve seen things which you could describe as courses, where you know one thing leads onto another thing, there is isolated bits of content. What kind of tasks are in need of being done to keep that initiative going?

[00:35:43] Vagelis Papaioannou: That’s a really hard one. I mean everyone can find something to do. You can do the meeting notes, which I can’t because I’m dyslexic, but you can. You can do a translation. You can get a lesson plan and translate it. You can create a lesson plan if you have an expertise, or you can create a tutorial. Or if you can create a video tutorial you can get the video and do the transcript.

You can review the content and test what the lesson plan guides you to do and see if it’s correct or not. And then provide feedback for the author to correct it, or say, yeah it’s great just publish it. There’s so many things from the smallest to the biggest one. And it’s really easy, even with an hour per week you can really make the difference.

[00:36:33] Nathan Wrigley: I guess the whole imposter syndrome thing may be something that people are concerned about. You know they’re listening to this and think, do you know what I think I’ve got something that I want to share, but there’s probably somebody out there who’s better at it than me. You know they’re a better writer or they’ve got skills for putting videos out there.

I guess we should address that. Are there any barriers to entry here in terms of the quality of what you’ve got to produce, or the level of expertise? You know if you are going to be writing or producing materials around, let’s say, something in WordPress Core, you probably do need to have some decent understanding of how that all works so that the content is actually useful.

[00:37:09] Vagelis Papaioannou: Yeah definitely. Well if you get into coding, I mean if you do a coding tutorial I guess you should just follow the coding standards and all that stuff. But again, if you do a mistake it’s not the end of the world. Someone will point you out to the right direction and you’re going to figure it out.

And as you may already know, and I’m sure you do, the best way to learn something really deeply is by writing or teaching it. This is the best way if you want to master a craft. If you try to teach it to somewhere else, you get really deep into it. And at the end of the day you will realise your weaknesses and you get better. Or you will realise that you shouldn’t have that imposter syndrome, which I have really bad.

[00:37:55] Nathan Wrigley: Amazing. You’ve come on this podcast. Thank you for that. Takes a lot of effort.

[00:37:59] Vagelis Papaioannou: I have to say it’s not an easy thing, but I mean I’m dyslexic it’s not something terrible. It’s just, okay I may read half your email and I may respond to half of it, or I may mess a few characters. But other people may get these as a weakness and step back because they have something like that. We have people in WordPress community that they can’t even see and they code daily, which is a massive thing.

If you consider that there’s a person without sight who can create some kind of code which is what they do for a living. Why should I stay back because I have that minor thing? And people shouldn’t just stay back. Just join the community. If you know one thing to do just say, yeah I’m good at it, and you’ll find someone to pair with and create something really good and helpful for others.

[00:38:56] Nathan Wrigley: What a cheery episode this has been. I really enjoyed this. And we talked about these fabulous events which you can get yourself involved in. Potentially make some real meaningful friendships and learn lots of things. But also pivoted to talk about the learn.wordpress.org, the training team if you like, and all of the free resources that are over there. A sort of sub community, if you like, of people there that you can also make friends with, and become part of the training team setup.

If somebody has been listening to this today and has thought to themselves, do you know what, maybe that’s for me, I’m going to give it a go. Whether that’s organising an event or becoming interested in training and all of that kind of thing. Let’s tackle the training team bit first. Where would you advise people to go? You mentioned obviously Slack but I wondered if there was somewhere else that you wanted to mention as well.

[00:39:44] Vagelis Papaioannou: If you don’t want to join Slack yet, just go to learn.wordpress.org, and this is the main website. And at the very bottom of your screen you’ll find the CTA. Have an idea for your content? Let us know. Apply to present a tutorial. Submit the topic idea. Just click any of those buttons. And on top of that there’s another block which says get involved, learn how to contribute. And you get all the info from there. It’s really easy. And there’s nothing scary into the process of being part of the team. There are all really welcoming and we’re really all good people. Well most of us.

[00:40:24] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah thank you. And then pivot that to events, meetups and WordCamps. Where would you point people if they want to begin that journey?

[00:40:32] Vagelis Papaioannou: Well I guess from their local community. Also be aware that you may see that there are a few faces that are again and again on the same event. An example, I’ve done a presentation at WordCamp Athens 2022. I’ve done one in 2021 I guess. I can’t remember. And then I did one in 19.

This is not because I’m special or something. This is because you didn’t apply. If you apply. You may get up there. We need help. We need more people. We need more organisers. We need more people to do presentations, more speakers if you want to. Don’t block yourself, just find your local community, get in touch with them, apply to facilitate an event, apply as a speaker.

It’s really easy. And even if you don’t get approved at the first time you apply as a speaker just do it again. Try again. It’s not the end of the world and it’s not personal. It’s probably because that specific event had too many applications, or maybe your presentation was too specific to something.

I mean I’m a coder but I’m not going to do a really deep, deep coding presentation because I know most folks are not coming for that on a local WordCamp, and they kind of get bored and we need to sell these tickets. So we had to do some funny presentations coding wise, but not just open your terminal people, type npm install and do that stuff. Yeah you know what I mean?

[00:42:09] Nathan Wrigley: If somebody has been listening to this podcast, this is more particular to you, where, if you wish to share that is, where would people be able to contact you? Perhaps you’ve got a website that you want to mention or a, I don’t know, a social media handle that you feel is a good way for people to get in touch.

[00:42:25] Vagelis Papaioannou: I do have a website which I made at WordCamp Athens some year. I can’t remember. It was a presentation about headless WordPress, which was really good back then when people started to freak out about Gutenberg. And I don’t use it at all, so there’s no content in there, so don’t use that.

Find me on GitHub. My username is vagelisp. Or on Twitter, and my handle on Twitter, it’s VagPapDev. Yeah that’s hard. V A G P A P D E V. That’s my Twitter handle. You can find me there. And of course on any of the Make Slack channels as Vagelis. And on Greek community Facebook and Slack channels as Vagelis as well.

Some may spot it that my name is spelled wrong and you may seen this with an n, Vangelis. I just don’t like it with a name. It’s my name. I’ll write it however I want.

[00:43:20] Nathan Wrigley: Thank you so much for joining us on the podcast today. I do hope that you get some people reaching out. That would be really great. I appreciate it. Thank you so much.

[00:43:27] Vagelis Papaioannou: Thanks for having me. It was really fun. And I really hope someone got something out of it, and someone got the boost, they may wanted to join their local community.

On the podcast today we have Vagelis Papaioannou.

Vagelis is a software engineer from Greece. His journey with coding began during his elementary school years, in an experimental coding class. This sparked a lifelong passion within him. His love for WordPress dates back to the early versions. For the last eight to nine years, he has actively participated in the Greek WordPress community, engaging in various roles such as organising WordCamps and meetups. Vagelis also contributes to multiple teams, cherishing the small contributions that allow everyone to make a difference. He also serves as the Project Translation lead for the Greek language.

Vagelis, although a self confessed introvert, shares his initial struggles with being a part of the community and attending local meetups. He encourages people to step outside their comfort zones and attend events like WordCamps and meetups, where they’re likely to discover a welcoming and friendly atmosphere.

Vagelis recounts his own experience of attending such events, initially feeling scared, but eventually having an enjoyable time, making many lasting friendships along the way. He talks about how local meetups are more casual gatherings than WordCamps. People come together to talk about WordPress, learn, and spend time with like-minded individuals. From meetups by the sea to forest walks, these events offer opportunities for both education and social engagement.

On the subject of WordCamps, Vagelis unravels the magic behind these larger, multi-day events with presentations and a contributor day. He emphasises that contribution to the community doesn’t necessarily require coding skills, and encourages more people to get involved. WordCamps are not only platforms for learning and exchanging ideas, but they also provide a space for attendees to have fun, network, and explore all manner of other opportunities.

We talk about the importance of the code of conduct at WordCamps. This code ensures that participants know that they are going to have a safe and inclusive experience. With attendees joining from all corners of the globe, these events attract a diverse range of individuals who are passionate about the software and the community.

We then talk about the effort required to organise these events, Vagelis explains why he’s willing to dedicate his time and energy to be part of such complex projects. He talks about the benefits participants gain from taking an active role, whether as organisers, speakers, or volunteer. As Vagelis shares his personal experiences in organising and participating in events like WordCamp Athens, he strongly advocates for more community involvement and highlights the need for new organisers to get involved to allow the community to meet up once again.

We then get into a discussion of other ways that you can be involved, this time in the Learn project, which is making freely available materials so that people can learn about WordPress at a time that suits them.

Vagelis talks about what the Learn team does and how you can join them. He discusses how the team works, using GitHub for collaboration and accommodating individuals with various skills and abilities. From the educational content available on the learn.wordpress.org website, to the valuable connections made through hallway chats, Vagelis emphasises the power and importance of the WordPress community.

If you’re a seasoned WordPress enthusiast or just starting your journey in contributions, this episode is for you.

Useful links.

Learn WordPress

Vagelis’ GitHub

Vagelis’ Twitter

Greek Community Facebook Group

by Nathan Wrigley at September 20, 2023 02:00 PM under podcast

September 19, 2023

WPTavern: WP Tavern Launches Forums

WP Tavern is launching forums today. If you have ever sat up all night with a feverish infant, searching for answers on a mommy messaging board, hunted down solutions for obscure bugs, or wasted an entire afternoon on a subreddit, then you know that forums are not dead.

Since the early days of BBSes (Wikipedia link for you young whippersnappers), which housed prototypical forums before the advent of the World Wide Web, modern forums have evolved and established themselves as a stalwart, timeless medium for asynchronous communication, fostering communities, and sharing knowledge among individuals with diverse interests and needs.

Today we will begin exploring how forums can help expand conversations that originate on the Tavern, especially within the comments of a post. Our new forums are powered by bbPress, which enables readers to create discussions by visiting the comment section of an article and clicking on “Create forum topic from comment” based on comments that you find particularly insightful.

Under the forum called “Discussion” you will find topics that have been created based on article comments. This offers readers a way to engage further with comments that spark larger discussions, long after the article has been published and comments have closed. This feature is available alongside traditional bbPress forums where logged-in users can create topics.

If a forum topic already exists for a comment, a link labeled “Continue Discussion in Forum” will appear on that topic, leading to the ongoing forum discussion. This prevents people from creating multiple forum topics from a single comment. These topics will include a link back to the original comment at the top of the thread. It is also still possible to add regular (non-forum) replies to comments as usual.

Readers must be registered and logged in order to post on the forums. At this time, topics and replies will continue to be moderated before they are published. We have tried wild west commenting style in the past and it doesn’t work well for raising the level of discourse and engagement that we hope to have in our forums. Come join us, introduce yourself, and start some new topics.

by Sarah Gooding at September 19, 2023 05:48 PM under forums

Do The Woo Community: Elevating the Entrepreneurial Spirit with Colin Daniels

Colin, co-founder of FooSales and FooEvents, walks us through the product journey with his WordPress and WooCommerce plugins.

>> The post Elevating the Entrepreneurial Spirit with Colin Daniels appeared first on Do the Woo - a WooCommerce Builder Community .

by BobWP at September 19, 2023 09:48 AM under Podcast Guests from North America

September 18, 2023

WPTavern: Openverse Wins 2023 Open Education Award, Seeks Community Feedback for 2024 Roadmap

Openverse has landed an Open Education Award for Excellence in the Open Infrastructure category. Open Education Global (OEG) is a non-profit organization that supports the use of open education to expand education access and affordability. Its annual awards recognize outstanding contributions to the Open Education community and its network of resources.

Openverse is one of 16 winners selected from more than 170 applicants. The award reviewers suggested Openverse “should be the primary recommended search for OER development,” due to its clear licensing and easy, one-click attribution, among other features:

That easy attribution feature (one-click copy for a full formed Creative Commons attribution) might be reason enough for an award, but the features to filter searches by source collections and other parameters (image orientation, specific license) provides seekers of open content important affordances to find clearly licensed media they can reuse.

Openverse should be the primary recommended search for OER development, as the licensing is explicitly clear, not subject to third party owners writing their own license), being of great value for projects that mix content from multiple sources. 

Openverse has made significant progress since coming under the WordPress project’s umbrella. In the past year, the team has added usage analytics, made major improvements to its user interface, moved Openverse out of an iFrame, added filtering and blurring of sensitive results (nearing completion), among many other technical improvements. The team is requesting feedback as they begin planning the 2024 roadmap.

“This project thrives on collaboration, and as we begin plotting our course for 2024, we want to hear from you,” Automattic-sponsored Openverse data engineer Madison Swain-Bowden said. “Have an idea that could improve Openverse? Noticed a feature gap we haven’t addressed? Have suggestions to improve existing features? We are eager to hear all about it!”

Anyone who wants to contribute a proposal regarding Openverse’s future can publish a comment to the team’s blog post requesting feedback. For more information about Openverse’s current projects and those that are on hold, check out the notes from the team’s most recent monthly meeting.

by Sarah Gooding at September 18, 2023 10:00 PM under Openverse

WPTavern: New Plugin Adds Citations and Bibliography Block to WordPress Editor

Citations is a new plugin created by WP Munich and the team at Luehrsen // Heinrich, a German WordPress agency. It makes it easy to create in-text citations and assign them a specific source. Most of the existing plugins that do this are for older versions of WordPress. This one is created specifically for those using the block editor.

Citations introduces a new menu item to the rich text formatting toolbar. Users can highlight the text they want to cite, click ‘Cite’ in the toolbar, and then define the source in the pop-up by inputting the source information into the fields provided.

The Citations plugin includes one Bibliography block, which will be automatically populated with all the sources of the in-text citations added in the content. Citations are linked to the corresponding source inside the Bibliography block. The block can be positioned anywhere in the document, although readers likely expect it at the bottom.

Users can edit the citations and the sources in the Bibliography block by clicking on them.

What’s the difference between citations and WordPress’ core Footnotes block? Although both are used in academic and scholarly writing to provide references and additional information about sources used in a document, there are a few key differences.

Citations credit the original source of the information with all the source details in the bibliography at the end of the document. Footnotes are more flexible in that they can include additional context or comments at the bottom of the document, to keep the text from becoming too cluttered with explanatory notes. They may also be used to source citations with the author, title, and publication details, but do not always follow the bibliography format.

The Citations plugin also includes a pattern that will insert some Lorem Ipsum paragraphs with citations and a sample bibliography with sources at the bottom. This gives users an idea of how the plugin can be used to structure a document for citing sources, if they are just getting started. Users can search for “Citations Demo” in the pattern search bar to find it.

Download the plugin for free from WordPress.org, or give it a test drive using WordPress Playground.

by Sarah Gooding at September 18, 2023 05:43 PM under Plugins

WordPress.org blog: WP Briefing: Episode 62: Enterprise Clients and the Business of WordPress

Join WordPress Executive Director Josepha Haden Chomphosy as she discusses the role WordPress Enterprise plays along with the WordPress community.

Have a question you’d like answered? You can submit them to wpbriefing@wordpress.org, either written or as a voice recording.


Host: Josepha Haden Chomphosy
Editor: Dustin Hartzler
Logo: Javier Arce
Production: Brett McSherry
Song: Fearless First by Kevin MacLeod

Show Notes


[00:00:00] Josepha: Hello everyone. And welcome to the WordPress Briefing, the podcast where you can catch quick explanations of the ideas behind the WordPress open source project, some insight into the community that supports it. And get a small list of big things coming up in the next two weeks. I’m your host, Josepha Haden Chomphosy. Here we go!

(Intro Music) 

[00:00:29] Josepha: In our last episode, we talked about the Community Summit and some trends that I was seeing. I’ve spent a lot of time since then summarizing the notes from each session, and I was processing notes from the session about aligning WordPress Enterprise and WordPress Community, which is a session that explored the various strengths and weaknesses of WordPress from an enterprise perspective, but especially when it comes to contributing to or communicating about WordPress.

Now, my vantage point on analyses like these is generally pretty different. Since I work mainly in an operations space for the project, I’m almost always looking at the health and safety of our ecosystem, product excellence, funding, things like that. So, I especially like to attend sessions that are from the vantage point of people who are much closer to the work than I am.

[00:01:15] Josepha: When I looked at the brainstormed list of things from the session, my first inclination was to catalog the relationships between what we saw as a positive or a negative and the things that we saw as intrinsic to us versus part of the environment. But the more I look at it, the more I see that there’s confirmation of what I have always known to be true. That WordPress is a valuable starting point for web-based solutions of all sizes and any purpose. Let’s take a look at some of the biggest themes that shine through from that session. I was able to distill them down to about nine primary themes, but I especially want to focus on some that come up year after year in talking with our community.

[00:01:57] Josepha: The first, of course, is the community and ecosystem. If you’ve listened to this podcast 62 times, then you’ve heard me say at least like 60 times that the community is what sets us apart from other open source projects. But, I would encourage you to expand that understanding to include the ecosystem that the community provides.

The community not only helps to plan and create WordPress, our primary software, but it also makes it distributable through the Polyglots team and Accessibility and Docs and Training. It also makes it extendable through plugins and themes and all of the work that goes into reviewing plugins and themes and the support that’s provided to people who come to the WordPress.org site, trying to figure out how to make this thing work for them.

And we also, this community, make it knowable, not only through the community part with our event series but also in marketing and the videos that we provide on WordPress TV and all of the training and learning cohorts that we provide on learn.WordPress.org, all of those teams make WordPress learnable and knowable and easy to use and usable to more people and available across the world, regardless of whether you speak English or not. And so yeah, the community and the ecosystem are some of the things that makes WordPress valuable for enterprise, but also WordPress valuable in general. 

[00:03:24] Josepha: The second is the software’s usability and flexibility. I said at WordCamp US that we exist for as long as people want to use our software, and that’s a funny little two-sided coin for us. WordPress remains very usable for folks who come to it in the same way that I came to it, which is as a user who is trying to accomplish a goal unrelated to WordPress. I didn’t start using WordPress because I wanted to figure out how WordPress worked or because I wanted to figure out how to contribute to WordPress. I came to WordPress because I was trying to market something, and WordPress was the best choice for that. But it’s also flexible for our brilliant developers out there who are doing things like building a suite of sites for NASA or creating bespoke social networks. So, our usability and flexibility, both of those things working together, are certainly one of the things that make me know that WordPress is incredibly valuable for anyone who needs to use it.

[00:04:22] Josepha: But the final thing is WordPress’s longevity or our resilience. So, I used to work at a marketing agency that served enterprise-level clients. And any time we pitched a new site build to a client, one of the main elements of discussion during decision-making was how long the decision would last. Do you want a page that you can launch in a day, run a six-week campaign through, and then abandon it forever? Or do you want a site that can take up to six weeks to build but can be yours to refine and hone for years after that? I know this seems like a silly example, but when you’re looking at the potential for a long-term bet, what you’re worried about, what you’re asking is, is this a software trusted in my industry? Is it time-tested by those companies I aspire to be? Is the available workforce composed of seasoned professionals or flash-in-the-pan peddlers of the latest craze? And of that workforce, how many will still be doing this in five years?

The question of how long we’ve been doing this and why it matters that WordPress has been here for 20 years and has no intention of going anywhere should be so much higher on everyone’s list of reasons to use this software. Yes, the WordPress software is powerful enough to be everything you might want it to be someday, but the WordPress ecosystem brought to us by this community has shown resilience through major breaking changes in 2008, 2016, 2018, 2020, and probably a lot of things between there that we have forgotten. So, if I were hoping to hedge my bets on a long-term solution, I would absolutely place those bets on this community, this ecosystem, and this software. 

(Music interlude) 

[00:06:17] Josepha: And now, it’s time for our small list of big things. I actually have a very big list today, so I’m just gonna break it out into two chunks. The first chunk is that we actually have a lot of calls for feedback and testing right now. We have six calls for feedback and testing that I really could use your input on.

The first one is that we still are having that discussion about how to evolve the FSE outreach program. That program started as a way to get faster, more fluid user feedback, specifically about full site editing inside Gutenberg. But there is a question now about where it needs to exist, how it’s serving current project needs, and what the future project needs will be. And so stop by that one. That should be a good, lively discussion. 

[00:07:06] Josepha: Speaking of discussions that are lively, we also have an update to the field guide. We have a proposed update to the field guide. This is not something that we’re looking to put in place for WordPress 6.4, just because that is coming so quickly. But it is something that we want to look at for future iterations of the field guide that come out with every major release. We want to make sure that we’re getting valuable information to the right people at the right time without having so much that it’s overwhelming but also without having so little that we miss really important things. 

[00:07:47] Josepha: There is another request for feedback, which is about additional ideas on the future of WordPress events. I brought this up in the past. I think I mentioned it on one other small list of big things, but there’s still time. So, if you’ve been shy about sharing your ideas, let this be your sign to get brave. Go share your thoughts on what events of the future should be for us. 

[00:08:03] Josepha: There’s also a proposal for updated support guidelines. This proposal comes out of a discussion that was had at WordCamp US, and so there is a summary of the discussion and then also the proposal that’s out there. I think that for all guidelines like this, support guidelines, and probably all things that require some review from ourselves, we always could stand to take a look at where those are, what brought us to where we are today, and what we can use to be better and more current in our client’s needs and our customers needs users needs as we are looking through those guidelines I think that the deadline for feedback on that is around the middle of September as well. 

[00:08:47] Josepha: And then the final bit of feedback/call for testing is on performant translations. That is a testing call for feedback. Contributions to that can be made on GitHub as well if that’s something where you test it and you immediately know how to offer some patches to make things better. That’s great, but you can always just leave your feedback in a comment or a new support topic. 

[00:09:19] Josepha: Okay, so that was the first chunk of the small list of big things. We have the second chunk of the small list of big things, which is to say that if all of that was new to you and sounds a little bit daunting and, you need some support to get started. There are also a couple of kind of group things that you can do in the coming weeks to get you started on that. 

There is a new WordPress diversity training session that’s happening. It’s a two-day workshop for women, specifically in India, but other countries are welcome to join us, too. We’ll be thinking about how to pull together your first presentation proposal, I believe.

The next one is that the WordPress community team is looking for folks to learn more about organizing meetups. And so, I’ll include a link to that in the show notes as well, but if you’ve never done this before and that did not sound like a getting started thing, trust me, organizing meetups not only is something that is easy to do because it’s kind of casual, you can get people together like in a coffee shop to talk about WordPress, but also the team over there has excellent onboarding. And so give it a try; at the very least, give it a read. 

The third thing on that set of things is that there’s a new group called WP Includes working to pair women in the WordPress community with one another for support and advice along their career paths. I will include a link to that in the show notes as well.

And then the final thing is that there is a meetup event that’s focused on flagship events coming up on September 21st. It will recap WordCamp US and host an open discussion for ideas for WordCamp Europe as well. Like I said, that’s going to take place on September 21st. I will include a link to that in the show notes as well.

[00:11:04] Josepha: If you don’t know where the show notes are, if you, sorry, if you’re listening to this on, like, Pocketcasts or Spotify or any other thingy, and you don’t know what I mean when I say the show notes, and you’ve literally never seen them in your life. You can go to WordPress.org/news/podcast, and there are transcripts and show notes with every podcast I put up, and that’s what I mean when I say that. WordPress.org/news/podcast, and then you get a bunch of links. It’ll be great. 

That, my friends, is your small list of big things. Thank you for tuning in today for the WordPress Briefing. I’m your host, Josepha Haden Chomphosy, and I’ll see you again in a couple of weeks.

(Outro music)

by Brett McSherry at September 18, 2023 12:00 PM under wp-briefing

Do The Woo Community: AI, WordPress and Woo with Alain Schlesser, Bud Kraus and Mark Westguard

Bud Kraus and Mark Westguard chat with Alain Schlesser about his story, and a look at AI, from coding to ecommerce to the ethics.

>> The post AI, WordPress and Woo with Alain Schlesser, Bud Kraus and Mark Westguard appeared first on Do the Woo - a WooCommerce Builder Community .

by BobWP at September 18, 2023 09:07 AM under Podcast Guests from North America

September 16, 2023

Gutenberg Times: Block Art and Attributes, Gato GraphQL and Command Palette – Weekend Edition 268


Are you also enjoying that last few weeks of summer-like weather in Europe? How is the weather in your part of the world? After I finish this newsletter, I’ll take a walk through the forest. I haven’t done this for a long time: shinrin-yoku (Forest bathing) is good for the soul. The forest behind my mother’s house has been familiar and hardly changed since I was a kid and lived with my grandmother in the same house. What is your favorite ritual to recover from many hours of screen time during the week? Hit reply or share in the comments.

Today’s newsletter has a little bit about WordPress 6.4 and, block building, much more about theme building and also looking a little bit beyond WordPress with GraphQL and Transformer.

I hope you enjoy it all this week again!

Yours, 💕

Developing Gutenberg and WordPress

Anne McCarthy held a Hallway Hangout: To chat about the WordPress 6.4 & Evolving the FSE Outreach Program and published a summary with the recording. She goes over the roadmap 6.4 post and identifies the state of the features.

In his fortnightly updates, Joen Asmussen lists the work by the WordPress Design team. In Design Share: Aug 28-Sep8 he highlighted:

  • Interface for unlinking a style from inherited source 
  • Refresh of the Hosting page
  • Sketch of a dismissible notification that lets you install missing fonts from the library. 
  • Templates table

🎙️ Latest episode: Gutenberg Changelog #89 – Gutenberg 16.6, default theme and Font Library with Nadia Maya Ardiani as special guest, hosted by Birgit Pauli-Haack

In her post on Core Editor Improvement: Commanding the Command Palette Anne McCarthy dives deep into the latest updates to the Command Palette, a new tool available with WordPress 6.3 designed to speed up your workflow. With work underway for WordPress 6.4, she gave a peek preview of what’s in store for the next iteration of this new option in your WordPress creation experience and a reminder of what it’s capable of already.

Plugins, Themes, and Tools for #nocode site builders and owners

Anne McCarthy takes a behind the scence stroll on how the Museum for Block Art collaborated with the organizers of WordCamps to highlight some of the art. From Pixels to Reality: Celebrating WordCamp EU & WordCamp US Exhibits

You are getting sleepy by Ramon JamesYou are getting sleepy by Ramon James

My long-time friend Jen Swisher takes you along the journey of How to Switch from a Classic Theme to a Block Theme in WordPress. She explains first the option you have, and more importantly why you might consider switching. Then she goes into more practical steps on how to accomplish a migration from your current classic theme to a block theme. Eventually, I will have to follow on a similar path when converting Gutenberg Times to a block theme. At the moment I am unable to focus on such a task, but maybe I can sequester myself for a weekend and get it done. Have you made the jump yet? What did you encounter, are there any pitfalls, that surprised you?

Munir Kamal of Gutenberg Hub released the new Query Taxonomy Filter Block to provide users and theme builders a way to extend the functionality of the core query loop. It’s a premium plugin that expands the capabilities of the core query block for more complex layouts and multiple filter options. It also offers a variety of display controls or facets and customization features. 

Theme Development for Full Site Editing and Blocks

On his podcast, Within WordPress, Remkus De Vries had a chat with Ian Svoboda about creating courses for the WordPress ecosystem and a lot more: On Block Themes, Custom Block development and a whole lotta WP CLI. The conversation about Block Themes starts at the 13:04 timestamp (On the YouTube version.) Happy to hear the shout-outs to Fabian Kägy and Aurooba Ahmed, as well as the HTML Processor. The discussion of static vs. dynamic blocks, nothing new, but always interesting to hear other developer perspectives.

Justin Tadlock announced the next phase for the Theme builders documentation overhaul: Theme Handbook Overhaul: Phase 3 (Publishing Content) and asked for public review of the last drafts of chapters. The tracking ticket leads you to the single chapters for your perusal. Helping improve documentation is an excellent way to take a deep dive into building block themes.

On this week’s Loop podcast, host Cory Hughart talked to Justin Tadlock on Writing Block Themes about his series of articles on the WordPress developer blog about adding custom controls to core blocks, theme scaffolding, and workflow scripts. They also discuss above mentioned Theme Documentation overhaul. The show notes provide a ton of resources for theme developers

 “Keeping up with Gutenberg – Index 2022” 
A chronological list of the WordPress Make Blog posts from various teams involved in Gutenberg development: Design, Theme Review Team, Core Editor, Core JS, Core CSS, Test and Meta team from Jan. 2021 on. Updated by yours truly. The index 2020 is here

Building Blocks and Tools for the Block editor.

Save the date: Hallway Hangout: What’s new for developers in WordPress 6.4. On Thursday, October 12, 2023, at18:00 UTC, Nick Diego, Ryan Welcher and Justin Tadlock will host a casual conversation about the most important and exciting developer-related changes coming soon in WordPress 6.4. From Block Hooks and the Font Library to improved Editor flows and the new Twenty Twenty-Four theme, there is just so much to talk about.

This month’s Developer Hours will cover: Building better blocks with the ‘create-block’ package. Nick Diego and Ryan Welcher will host the event and it will take place on September 27 at 14:00 UTC. The two developers will take a deep dive into the functionalities of the create-block package. Developed to simplify and accelerate the process of building custom WordPress blocks, this package has become an indispensable tool for developers of all levels.

Leonardo Losoviz, released version 1.0 of the Gato GraphQL plugin. It’s a rebranded version of GraphQL for WordPress plugin. It brings plenty of improvements, including

  • the integration with the (Gutenberg) block editor,
  • support for private and password-protected endpoints, and
  • the availability of (commercial) extensions to extend the GraphQL schema and provide further functionality.

This version Gato GraphQL is also on its way to the WordPress plugin repository. On the GitHub space, Losoviz shared that he based part of the block feature on the WordPress VIP team’s Block Data API.

Michael Burridge created a step-by-step tutorial on Understanding block attributes. There’s more to block attributes than meets the eye. Attributes contain data needed by your block, and that data can be retrieved from numerous locations, not just the block delimiter. This post shows you the ways.

If you work in React and JSX you might enjoy this very nifty tool: Transform HTML to JSX by Ritesh Kumar. Just paste the HTML of your designs into one box and get well formatted JSX in the second box.

Kumar and 30+ other contributors created transform tools for all kinds of purposes, ie: JSON to JSDocs, JSON to GraphQL, CSS to JS Objects.

Need a plugin .zip from Gutenberg’s master branch?
Gutenberg Times provides daily build for testing and review.
Have you been using it? Hit reply and let me know.

GitHub all releases

Questions? Suggestions? Ideas? Don’t hesitate to send them via email or send me a message on WordPress Slack or Twitter @bph.

For questions to be answered on the Gutenberg Changelog, send them to changelog@gutenbergtimes.com

Featured Image: Lego building block CC0 licensed photo by ekodesign from the WordPress Photo Directory.

Don’t want to miss the next Weekend Edition?

We hate spam, too and won’t give your email address to anyone except Mailchimp to send out our Weekend Edition

Thanks for subscribing.

by Birgit Pauli-Haack at September 16, 2023 11:17 AM under Weekend Edition

September 15, 2023

WPTavern: Developers Claim Damaged Trust Following Public Confrontations with WordPress Leadership

The WordPress community is ending two days of heated discussions that rapidly descended into a mire of unbridled emotional confrontations across multiple social channels, following a tweet from John Blackbourn that raised concerns about WordPress.com plugin listings outranking WordPress.org on Google Search.

Developers expressed concerns about the SEO impact of the practice of cloning WordPress.org’s plugin directory for use on WordPress.com, with no backlinks to the original plugin. Another concern is that it perpetuates the longstanding confusion between WordPress.org and WordPress.com.

“I don’t think the SEO concern is real, and by that I mean that besides John’s screenshot, which I think is related to the .org en-gb subdomain decision/bug,” Matt Mullenweg told the Tavern when asked whether WordPress.com is considering not indexing these pages that duplicate content from WordPress.org.

“For general searches I’m seeing .com 5 pages down,” he said. “Just looking at traffic to those pages, they don’t seem to be getting much if any from search engines! So I’m not really concerned about SEO of those pages.

“The vast majority of the traffic to those is to logged in users. When they click ‘manage’ they can easily install it across multiple sites or see where it’s already installed, which actually works across .com and Jetpack sites.”

He offered a similar explanation to Freemius founder Vova Feldman on X, who claimed that WordPress.com has an SEO advantage over independent plugins.

Plugin developers also expressed concerns about new users arriving to a plugin’s duplicated page on WordPress.com and seeing that the plugin is Free only on the (paid) Business plan. This gives the visitor the impression that the plugin isn’t available for free elsewhere, because there is no link back to WordPress.org with an explanation.

Many WordPress.org plugin authors were not aware until recently that their plugin pages are being scraped for use on WordPress.com. Yesterday, Patchstack updated its readme file to ensure that WordPress.com users and visitors are made aware that the plugin is available for free in the official WordPress plugin repository, using the following text:

This plugin can be downloaded for free without any paid subscription from the official WordPress repository.

“I was at a Python conference last week and a guy came to our booth and said he has a WordPress site but he hasen’t been able to purchase any plugins yet,” Patchstack CEO Oliver Sild said. “I told him that they are all free, and then it turned out he had a WordPress.com site where he has to pay to install any plugins. These people think that THIS IS the WordPress.”

When asked if WordPress.com could at least link back to the .org plugin for logged-out views to eliminate some of the confusion, Mullenweg confirmed that he told Sild that WordPress.com would work on adding links to the .org equivalent page this week.

“But that confusion that people claim is causing huge issues for WordPress isn’t supported by the numbers or growth of non-.com solutions over 17 years now,” Mullenweg said.

“So at some point we should stop accepting it as within our top 100 issues for WordPress.

“It’s much more likely like a road bump for some newbies, than an actual blocker, not unlike learning the difference between categories and tags, or how to identify a normal-looking comment that’s actually spam.”

In response to WordPress developer Daniel Schutzsmith saying that WordPress.com is causing confusion for OSS, Mullenweg contended that it “creates a false dichotomy between WP on .com and ‘open source software.’ Every site on .com is part of the OSS community as much as on any other host.

“When there is confusion, it assumes that it’s a top issue for WordPress. Nothing about WP’s growth, including vis a vis other projects, indicates that the existence of a .com and .org with the same name has held us back.”

In support of his claims about the growth of non-WordPress.com solutions, he cited a W3Techs report on hosting company usage stats with extrapolated revenue on Post Status Slack.

“On revenue: If you extrapolate out public domain numbers with plan pricing, and look at public filings like the amount GoDaddy makes from hosting and what % of that hosting is WP-powered, you pretty quickly see that GoDaddy, Newfold/Bluehost, Siteground, Hostinger, and WP Engine make more than .com from WordPress hosting.,” Mullenweg said. “You can check out those companies on the five for the future page.”

Mullenweg has previously criticized large hosting companies for what he perceives to be a lack of support for the open source WordPress and WooCommerce projects in proportion to how much they benefit from the use of these platforms. His comments in Post Status yesterday indicate that while he is still unsatisfied with their core contributions, he acknowledges these companies as important to WordPress’ overall growth.

“By the way, despite not looking great for core contributions, I think each of those companies has been essential for the growth of WordPress, and particularly the work they invest into upgrade PHP, MySQL, core auto-updates, plugin auto-updates, and security are crucial for the health of our ecosystem,” Mullenweg said.

“It’s ‘cynically cool’ to hate on some of the bigger ones, but it’s a free and open market, none of their WP users are locked in and could easily switch to other hosts if they weren’t happy with the price and value they were getting. In fact by that measure, you could argue they’ve all done a much better job than .com at connecting with customers. Maybe I spend too much of .com’s engineering and investment on things like 2fa/passkeys, reader/notifications, stats, the mobile apps, Gutenberg, and Calypso and not enough on marketing or paying off affiliate host review sites.”

The Damaging Community Impact of Public Confrontations

Mullenweg continued to be active on Post Status Slack and X (Twitter) throughout the day, attempting to debunk claims that Automattic is exploiting open source contributors for profit. These interactions included personal attacks which followed after Mullenweg blocked WordPress Marketing Team co-rep Sé Reed who claimed that he is standing in the way of contributors improving the open source project and that he was “vilifying, dismissing, and insulting” the WordPress community.

Some perceived him blocking Reed as him shutting down criticism, despite the fact that he said this is the first person he has ever blocked on Twitter. Although her comments were tangential to the original issue (the impact of the WordPress.com plugin listings), they became a focal point after Mullenweg lashed out at developer and product owner Dan Cameron who accused him of “actively doing more harm than good.”

I reached out to Automattic-sponsored WordPress Executive Director Josepha Haden-Chomphosy who said she did not have additional comments about what has happened with the recent confrontational exchanges, nor the impact on the community.

“I find it kinda refreshing to see Matt throw an elbow or two and stick up for himself,” WP All Import Product Manager Joe Guilmette said in Post Status Slack.

“It’s not the greatest look, but that’s for his PR people to sort out. I don’t have any idea how I’d handle being criticized so heavily for years by the people who built businesses and careers on a project that I helped bring in to the world, but it probably would be a lot worse than calling a few people out on Twitter.”

Others who gathered in various Slack instances, watching things play out on Twitter, felt collectively traumatized by witnessing the interactions between Mullenweg and different community members.

“I think Matt did way more damage this time than ever before,” one prominent WordPress consultant said, requesting to remain anonymous. “It generated good but quite wearied and sad expressions of grief and anguish in my company Slack and no doubt many others.

“The instantly and deeply (however crudely researched) personal nature of Matt’s attacks leads people to paranoid fears that he has a shitlist of enemies who are just regular people, not giant companies etc. It’s a fearsome kind of punching down where the community gets stuck in the psychological position of the children of an abusive parent. Different personalities and different perspectives based on our own experiences lead us to different coping responses. But it’s very ugly now to have the paranoia confirmed as Matt basically taunted the fact that he feeds on what he’s told second or third hand about things others say about him in private.”

Matt Cromwell, Senior Director of Customer Experience at StellarWP, said that discussions that start and stay on X/Twitter generally have very little fruit, especially when resolving something as complicated as the WordPress.com plugins SEO issue.

“The community keeps leaning on this platform for these discussions but things like the impact of duplicate content on two sites both called ‘WordPress’ requires more nuanced and trusting conversations which Twitter can’t provide,” Cromwell said.

“Mullenweg used the whole thing as an excuse to make so many of the plugin owners that drive WP adoption feel small. It was extremely hurtful to the trust product owners put into the leadership of the WP project. I expect to see more product owners prefer to build SaaS integrations with WP rather than dedicated products because they don’t trust that Mullenweg has their mutual interest in mind at all anymore – and I don’t see a way for him to ever put that genie back in the bottle after this behavior both on Twitter and in Post Status Slack.”

WordPress developer and contributor Alex Standiford said Mullenweg’s public confrontations yesterday are “a bad look for WordPress, and deflate the passionate contributors who genuinely believe in WordPress.” Despite recent events, he continues to believe in the larger impact of people building open source software together.

“I believe that WordPress isn’t software,” Standiford wrote on his blog. “It’s not community. It’s not a single person, no matter how significant that person thinks they are. I believe that WordPress is the manifestation of a belief that the web is at its best when it’s open. If I genuinely believed that forking WordPress would be good for WordPress, and the web, I’d contribute to it over the existing platform in a heartbeat.”

by Sarah Gooding at September 15, 2023 09:34 PM under News

Post Status: Accessibility in Site Editor, Openverse Wins an Award, What’s New for Devs in WP 6.4, Fields API Summary

This Week at WordPress.org (September 11, 2023)

Openverse Wins the 2023 OEG Open Infrastructure Award. Get a sneak peek into the exciting developments for developers in the upcoming WordPress 6.4 release.

Community Summit Notes









Online Workshops


WordPress TV


Thanks for reading our WP dot .org roundup! Each week we are highlighting the news and discussions coming from the good folks making WordPress possible. If you or your company create products or services that use WordPress, you need to be engaged with them and their work. Be sure to share this resource with your product and project managers.

Are you interested in giving back and contributing your time and skills to WordPress.org? Start Here ›

Get our weekly WordPress community news digest — Post Status’ Week in Review — covering the WP/Woo news plus significant writing and podcasts. It’s also available in our newsletter.

Post Status

You — and your whole team can join Post Status too!

Build your network. Learn with others. Find your next job — or your next hire. Read the Post Status newsletter. ✉ Listen to podcasts. 🎙 Follow @Post_Status 🐦 and LinkedIn. 💼

This article was published at Post Status — the community for WordPress professionals.

by Courtney Robertson at September 15, 2023 06:54 PM under WordPress News

Do The Woo Community: WooBits, the First Look into the Do the Woo Network and WooSesh is Live

This week I focus on giving you a bit more news around our new Do the Woo network and our partnership with WooSesh.

>> The post WooBits, the First Look into the Do the Woo Network and WooSesh is Live appeared first on Do the Woo - a WooCommerce Builder Community .

by BobWP at September 15, 2023 02:00 PM under WooBits

WPTavern: WooSesh 2023 Publishes Speaker Lineup, Launches Seshies Awards

WooSesh 2023, the virtual conference for WooCommerce store builders, will be broadcast live on October 10-12. This year’s theme is “Next Generation Commerce.” Registration is not yet open, but the speaker lineup and broadcast schedule have just been published. Over the course of three days, WooSesh will feature 31 speakers across 23 sessions.

The event will kick off with the State of the Woo address, delivered by WooCommerce CEO Paul Maiorana and other product leaders from the company. Speakers will cover a wide range of topics like complexities of sales tax and product taxability, accessibility, block themes, security, AI tools, and automation, with case studies and workshops mixed in.

New in 2023: The Seshies

WooSesh organizer Brian Richards is launching “The Seshies” this year, a community awards ceremony that will recognize the best examples of the WooCommerce ecosystem across six categories: Innovation, Store, Extension, Agency, Developer, and Community Advocate.

The Seshies will include a community awards ceremony that will celebrate the winners. Anyone can nominate candidates for the awards, and participants can even nominate themselves and their own WooCommerce projects.

“These awards are something that have been on my heart for quite some time,” Richards said. “And now, after 6 years of hosting WooSesh and 10 years of running WPSessions, I think I’ve amassed enough authority and (critically) a wide enough reach to deliver awards, on your behalf, that have real meaning.”

The week before the event, Richards plans to publish the top three nominees in each category. The community will vote throughout the first two days of WooSesh and the winners will be announced on the final day. Winners will receive a digital badge of recognition and Richards said he is also working on producing physical awards to ship to winners anywhere in the world.

by Sarah Gooding at September 15, 2023 03:34 AM under woosesh

September 14, 2023

WPTavern: ActivityPub 1.0.0 Released, Introducing Blog-Wide Accounts and New Blocks

Version 1.0.0 of the ActivityPub plugin was released this week with major updates that make it possible to have a blog-wide account, instead of just individual author accounts, where followers receive updates from all authors. This new feature allows people to follow blogs on decentralized platforms like Mastodon (and many others) with replies automatically published back to the blog as comments.

In the ActivityPub plugin settings, users can check “Enable blog” to have the blog become an ActivityPub profile. Authors can be enabled at the same time as a blog-wide profile.

Activities originating from a Blog profile can be further customized through the existing post content and image settings. Users can also set the activity object type to default, article, or WordPress post format which maps the post format to the ActivityPub object type. Supported post types include posts, pages, and media. Note that the blog-wide profile only works with sites that have rewrite rules enabled.

An experimental hashtags setting is also available, which adds hashtags in the content as native tags and replaces the #tag with the tag link. Users should be aware that it may still produce HTML or CSS errors.

ActivityPub 1.0.0 introduces two new blocks – one for displaying Fediverse Followers and the other for displaying a “Follow” button to allow people to follow the blog or author on the Fediverse. The Follower system has also gotten a complete rewrite based on Custom Post Types.

Other notable updates in this release include the following:

  • Signature Verification: https://docs.joinmastodon.org/spec/security/
  • Simple caching
  • Collection endpoints for Featured Tags and Featured Posts
  • Better handling of Hashtags in mobile apps
  • Update: Improved linter (PHPCS)
  • Fixed: Load the plugin later in the WordPress code lifecycle to avoid errors in some requests
  • Fixed: Updating posts
  • Fixed: Hashtag now support CamelCase and UTF-8

Automattic acquired the plugin in March 2023 from German developer Matthias Pfefferle, who joined the company to continue improving support for federated platforms. Next on the roadmap for the ActivityPub plugin is threaded comments support and replacing shortcodes with blocks for layout.

by Sarah Gooding at September 14, 2023 10:43 PM under activitypub

WordPress.org blog: Openverse Wins the 2023 OEG Open Infrastructure Award

WordPress is excited to announce that Openverse has been awarded the 2023 Open Education Award for Excellence in the Open Infrastructure category!

The Open Education Awards for Excellence, organized by the non-profit organization Open Education Global (OEG), celebrate people, resources, and initiatives that have significantly contributed to the open education field and community. This year, they received 172 nominations across 16 award categories, representing individuals and projects from 38 countries.

This award honors Openverse’s work to make it easy for everyone to discover and use open educational resources. The award reviewers were particularly impressed by Openverse’s one-click attribution feature. Moreover, they highlighted the tool’s ability to filter searches by source collections and other parameters, such as image orientation and specific license, which they noted “provides seekers of open content important affordances to find clearly licensed media they can reuse.” 

“This is an exceptional search engine for the open education community. The one click attribution copy for images makes attribution very straight-forward and easy, even for novice users. The design is excellent; the results are returned fast.”

Award reviewer for the 2023 OEG Award for Open Infrastructure

This recognition not only underscores Openverse and WordPress’s commitment to open content but also celebrates the work of their dedicated contributors, community, and partners in advancing open education and creative works.

Learn more about this Openverse award on the OEG page.

Congratulations, Openverse!

by Madison Swain-Bowden at September 14, 2023 06:04 PM under award

Do The Woo Community: Always Practicing and Learning with Artemy Kaydash

Backend WordPress and WooCommerce developer, Artemy Kaydash, shares his dev story and the importance of always learning.

>> The post Always Practicing and Learning with Artemy Kaydash appeared first on Do the Woo - a WooCommerce Builder Community .

by BobWP at September 14, 2023 01:05 PM under Podcast Guests from Europe

Do The Woo Community: A WCUS Recap with Topher DeRosia, Raquel Manriquez and Cory Miller

Our final recap of WordCamp US with Topher DeRosia, Raquel Manriquez and Cory Miller

>> The post A WCUS Recap with Topher DeRosia, Raquel Manriquez and Cory Miller appeared first on Do the Woo - a WooCommerce Builder Community .

by BobWP at September 14, 2023 07:15 AM under Podcast Guests from North America

WPTavern: Developers Raise Concerns About WordPress.com Plugin Listings Outranking WordPress.org on Google Search

WordPress core developer John Blackbourn sparked a heated discussion yesterday when he posted an image of his WordPress User Switching plugin ranking higher for the WordPress.com listing than the page on WordPress.org.

Blackbourn later apologized for the inflammatory wording of the original post, but maintains that .com plugin listings being displayed higher in search results is not healthy for the open source project.

“This was a frustrated 2AM tweet so I could have worded it better, but the point still stands,” he said. “The plugin pages on dotcom are little more than marketing landing pages for the dotcom service and they’re strongly competing with the canonical dotorg pages. That’s not healthy.”

Several others commented about having similar experiences when searching for plugins, finding that the WordPress.com often ranks higher, although many others still see WordPress.org pages ranked highest.

Blackbourn said his chief concern “is the process that introduced the directory clone on .com either disregarded its potential impact on .org in favor of inbounds or never considered it in the first place – both very concerning given the ranking power of .com.”

The tweet highlighted the frustration some members of the open source community feel due to the perennial branding confusion between WordPress.com and WordPress.org. Nothing short of renaming WordPress.com will eliminate the longstanding confusion, but this is unlikely as Automattic benefits from tightly coupling its products to WordPress’ name recognition.

“Duplicate content confuses the human + search engines,” SEO consultant Rebecca Gill said. “Search engines won’t like it, nor will humans trying to find solutions to their problems. There is already enough confusion w/ .org + .com for non-tech folks. This amplifies it. Noindex .com content or canonical it to .org.”

Participants in the discussion maintain that the duplication of the open source project’s plugin directory “creates ambiguity and confusion” but WordPress co-creator and Automattic CEO Matt Mullenweg contends it also gives plugin authors greater distribution.

“It’s providing distribution to the plugin authors, literally millions and millions of installs,” Mullenweg said. He elaborated on how the cloned plugin directory is integrated with Calypso, WordPress.com’s admin interface:

.com has its own plugin directory which includes the .org one, it provides more installs and distribution to the plugin authors, which helps their usage and for commercial ones gets them more sales. The plugins are not altered. .com takes no cut for the distribution.

When participants in the discussion suggested that other hosts doing the same thing would create a wild west situation for plugin rankings, Mullenweg said he would not mind if the plugins were “duplicated and distributed by every host and site on the planet,” as they are all licensed under the GPL.

Outrage against distributing WordPress.org plugins in this fashion was not universal in the discussion. A few commenters support this strategy and see it as beneficial for the long-term health of the open source project.

“I’m all for it to be honest,” WordPress developer Cristian Raiber said. “Anyone could scrape those pages but not everyone gives back to WordPress and makes sure it’s here to stay for the next decades. Controversial, I know. But I prefer we build together instead of alone.

“I fail to see how this is not an advantage to anyone who hosts their plugins (for FREE) on w[dot]org ?” Raiber continued in a separate response. “Is it about being outranked in Google’s SERPs for brand kws? Why has this generated so much outcry when the intent is clearly beneficial?

“This FINALLY solves a friction point for potential buyers. Streamlined plugin installation and usage vs ‘here’s a list of 55 steps you have to take to install my plugin.’ Users want options, different uses cases and all. I want wp.com to make money so they keep growing this product.”

XWP Director of Engineering Francesca Marano suggested that WordPress.com has benefitted from the branding and reputation of .org, which is built by volunteers. She also proposed that Automattic “has the resources to do a whole rebranding which would ultimately benefit both projects.”

Mullenweg responded to these comments, defending WordPress.com’s efforts in fending off early WordPress competitors and cited Automattic’s preeminence in contributing back to core, despite taking in less revenue than some larger companies making money from the software:

Since its foundation, .org has benefitted from the branding and reputation of having a robust SaaS version available from .com, including a free version, something basically no other host does. Over 200M people have used it, and countless started on .com and then migrated to another host. The shared branding made it very difficult for services like Typepad to compete. You want to see what WP would look like without it? Go to Joomla.

.com has also been the source of countless performance improvements, we deploy pre-release versions of core to millions of sites to find bugs and do testing, making WP releases way more stable for regular users and hosts. No company contributes more, even though many make more from WP than .com’s revenue. It would have been way easier to fork the software, not merge MU. Most hosts (and many community members) bad-mouth .com while not contributing a fraction back to core. Hosts spend tens of millions a year on ads against .com. I get attacked constantly.

In 2010, when the WordPress Foundation was created, Automattic transferred the WordPress trademarks to the Foundation, after having been the temporary custodian of the trademarks until that time. As part of the transfer, the Foundation granted Mullenweg use of the WordPress trademark for WordPress.com.

This trademark was deliberately secured, and the company does not appear to be open to renaming the platform. This doesn’t mean WordPress.com can’t do anything to mitigate the confusion that scraping the WordPress.org plugin directory creates. Participants in the discussion suggested that WordPress.com forego indexing the pages they created for plugins that developers submitted to the open source project.

“You can control SEO by telling search engines to not index those pages of open source software developed for .org on the .com domain,” WordPress plugin developer Marco Almeida said.

“I have 20 free plugins on the repository and I don’t see how my plugins will benefit if we open this pandora box and normalize cloning these pages and diluting the WordPress.org importance on search engines.”

Developers who are just now discovering their WordPress.org plugins cloned to WordPress.com listings are also wanting to know how many of their installs come from WordPress.com so they can better understand their user bases. Mullenweg suggested developers who want a different listing for WordPress.com users can sign up for the .com marketplace.

Tensions remained high as the heated discussion continued throughout the day and into the evening with criticism flowing across X (Twitter), Post Status Slack, and other social channels, as many developers learned for the first time that their plugin listings have been cloned on WordPress.com. As long as a commercial entity shares the open source project’s branding, these types of clashes and friction will continue popping up.

“Personally, I can’t help but empathize with plugin authors that chose to support OSS and find the directory cloned in a commercial service, albeit free, with no access to stats,” Francesca Marano said. “As I mentioned before, the main issue is the confusion around the two projects.”

by Sarah Gooding at September 14, 2023 04:05 AM under wordpress.com

September 13, 2023

Akismet: Version 5.3 of the Akismet WordPress plugin is now available

Version 5.3 of the Akismet plugin for WordPress is now available.

The updated plugin has new easy-to-read notices. These are the messages shown when Akismet is successfully set up or there is an issue with your install.

We have improved support for RTL (right-to-left) languages like Hebrew and Arabic, and have made some accessibility improvements to help users enter their API key more easily.

Users of the Fluent Forms plugin will be pleased to know that the latest version of Akismet is now compatible with Fluent Forms v5 and above.

To upgrade, visit the Updates page of your WordPress dashboard and follow the instructions. If you need to download the plugin zip file directly, links to all versions are available in the WordPress plugins directory.

by Chris Rosser 🏔 at September 13, 2023 08:31 PM under Releases

WPTavern: #90 – Olga Gleckler on How Anyone Can Contribute to the WordPress Project


[00:00:00] Nathan Wrigley: Welcome to the Jukebox podcast from WP Tavern. My name is Nathan Wrigley.

Jukebox is a podcast which is dedicated to all things WordPress. The people, the events, the plugins, the blocks, the themes, and in this case, how you can assist the WordPress project by contributing.

If you’d like to subscribe to the podcast, you can do that by searching for WP Tavern in your podcast player of choice. Or by going to WPTavern.com forward slash feed forward slash podcast. And you can copy that URL into most podcast players.

If you have a topic that you’d like us to feature on the podcast, I’m keen to hear from you, and hopefully get you all your idea featured on the show. Head to WPTavern.com forward slash contact forward slash jukebox, and use the form there.

So on the podcast today we have Olga Gleckler. Olga is a self-taught developer with many years of experience. After initially pursuing a career in marketing, she turned back to her passion for programming and became a full-time developer. She has been contributing to WordPress for four years, and is currently serving as the Core triaged lead for version 6.4.

In addition, Olga is a maintainer for two components in Core, and actively participates in various teams within the WordPress community.

Outside of work, she’s also writing a fantasy book, which has a significant personal project for her.

Olga has tried her hand in various teams within the WordPress community, ranging from Polyglots to Training, Support and more. She challenges the commonly held misconception that only coders can contribute to the WordPress project, highlighting the many different ways individuals can contribute without coding skills.

During our conversation, Olga shares some examples of non-coding contributions that can be made to the WordPress project. We talk about the process of submitting patches and contributions to WordPress, discussing the schedule for releases, and the importance of understanding the processes and deadlines.

Olga also emphasizes the essential steps of testing, reviewing for coding standards and ensuring correct documentation in order to make impactful contributions.

Olga’s journey and the WordPress community has been very varied. She discusses how being part of this ecosystem has improved her career prospects, and gained her trust from others. However she acknowledges that not everyone finds their place immediately and may struggle to get started.

She explores how to contribute without becoming discouraged, and shares her experiences in the mentorship program that paired mentors with mentees in navigating the WordPress community.

Throughout the conversation Olga shows a deep passion for the WordPress project and the collaborative nature of the community. She reminds us that contributing to open source projects requires patience and persistence and shares her insights on learning methods, seeking guidance and asking questions in order to make progress.

If you’ve thought about contributing to WordPress, but are not sure where to begin, this episode is for you. If you’re interested

in finding out more, you can find all of the links in the show notes by heading over to WPTavern.com forward slash podcast, where you’ll find all the other episodes as well.

And so without further delay, I bring you Olga Gleckler.

I am joined on the podcast today by Olga Gleckler. Hello, Olga!

[00:04:08] Olga Gleckler: Hi.

[00:04:09] Nathan Wrigley: Very nice to have you with us. Olga is going to be chatting to us today about contributing to WordPress, probably specifically around WordPress Core, but we will no doubt in the introduction discover that Olga’s done a lot more in the WordPress space.

Olga, just before we begin, let’s orientate our listeners a little bit about you. This is a chance to give us your biography. Tell us who you are, how long you’ve been working with code and computers and in the WordPress space more specifically. You can go as far back as you like.

[00:04:43] Olga Gleckler: Sounds great. I wanted to be a programmer at school, but I messed up with my education and turned out to be a marketer. Then I was a bit disappointed in marketing because you cannot promise to deliver something and actually deliver it. And I switched back to my previous passion to development, and become a developer like a self taught.

And already nine years I’m working full time as a developer. And four years I’m contributing to WordPress. To find the WordPress community, it was a big discovery for me, and actually turning point for the whole experience, because WordPress is good, is great, and I liked it.

When I discovered the community, I started to love it. And since Berlin in 2019, I joined marketing team and several other teams. I contributed to polyglots team, to training team, to support, I love support. And some other teams. And right now I am Core triage lead for 6.4. I was Core triage co-lead for 6.3 as well.

I’m a maintainer for two components in Core, so I think I know a bit about how you can actually contribute to Core, and I still enjoying all the process.

Apart from full time job and contribution, I also want to mention that I’m writing a fantasy book. It’s like a big deal for me. It’s a draft, but it’s another passion I carry on with myself all around the world.

[00:06:25] Nathan Wrigley: That’s really interesting. So you’ve been involved in all sorts of different sides of WordPress. You mentioned there specifically that you joined the marketing team, obviously based upon your past history with studying marketing and things like that. But you found that that maybe wasn’t the best fit for you. And I guess that’s going to be part of the conversation today, is that there’s a lot of different places that you can contribute. And if you join a team and it doesn’t seem to be the right fit first time, that’s not a reason to give up, because there are just multiple different ways that you can contribute to WordPress, right?

[00:07:02] Olga Gleckler: I love marketing. I cannot kick it out of me, and I still deeply involved in marketing team activities and most of my efforts I am making are between teams. For example, between marketing and mobile team, between marketing and Core team. It’s something inside me and I cannot kick it out, and I’m looking at Core tickets from the marketing point of view, and trying to find something significant, something to change, something to improve user experience, to deliver improvement and make a difference and impact.

So, yes. I joined marketing team first and I’m still there, part of the marketing team, but I tried different things like in support, in polyglots. They are all very different and very important as well. So I poke around a lot, and finally I pluck up the courage, with help, and starting to contribute to Core team.

[00:08:06] Nathan Wrigley: It sounds like on your journey you have dabbled in, you said, poking around, you’ve had a go at various different teams and you’ve obviously enjoyed that. In some of the show notes that you shared with me, you list out some of the different things. So you’ve been involved in several different teams, for example, polyglots, training, and you mentioned support and TV actually, which is kind of an interesting one.

That gives us an idea of the different things that you can be involved in. There’s a whole range there, but I want to drive this message home. The idea that if you’re in the WordPress community, I think there is a perception that if you don’t code, you’re probably not going to be able to contribute. And I think it’s fair to say that you really don’t believe that. That’s just not true. You don’t have to have any coding skills at all.

Now, clearly, if you’re tackling contributions where code is required, that’s probably different, but there’s loads of different ways that you can contribute. And I wonder if you wouldn’t mind just telling us about some of those different things. Some of the things that teach us that you don’t need to be a coder to contribute to the project.

[00:09:17] Olga Gleckler: For example, Community team. Community team is handling all the organization processes for meetups, WordCamps, other events and supporting people. It’s a great and a big job for managers. People who are taking care about things. You don’t need to be a developer at all. You just need to manage things.

And this is only one team, and we have more than 22 teams. We have security team. It’s a bit obscure because obvious reasons, but you can contribute to all other teams. For example, if you are teacher, you can contribute to training team. If you are purely WordPress user, you can contribute to a lot of teams.

For example documentation and checking if things are clear, and documentation is actually following the actual result or not, or something needs to be changed.

And users, just users without any experience in development can bring a huge value because developers are, we have such flaw because everything is working for us. We know how it should go, and it’s going in the right direction. And if you don’t know how it’s supposed to work, you can poke around a bit and discover some flaws, some doubts, some things which are unclear, and bring a huge value for the code itself.

And apart from it translation. Polyglot team is your goal if you like to translate. And this is the way to improve your own understanding of English and your own language. Because if you are starting to translate, it’s become apparent, obvious that it isn’t easy to do. And you need to put your brain, your heart to this task at hand.

And support also a good point for people who want to learn. Because if you, for example, can answer like one question from ten, you can make someone else’s day better.

And in the process, you can learn more and more, and answer more questions, and improve your own skills this way. Just helping other people. And. This is only few teams you can contribute.

And also TV. You can edit videos for other people. You can translate and make subtitles for these videos. You can of course review them.

And the team everyone is just love right now is photo team. You can contribute your photos to photo directory and contribute this way. If you are a photographer you can contribute to WordPress your ideas in pictures. And of course, if you like looking at pictures, you can go and review these contributions. Because there are some rules, for example, people not, should not be present on these images, et cetera. So there are some rules about quality, et cetera.

So we have a lot more abilities. It’s just top of things and we have a lot more.

[00:12:37] Nathan Wrigley: There are, from everything you’ve just said, so many different avenues that you could go down. And I know, even though you gave us quite a list there, you’ve still probably only scratched the surface, and if you were to get into the weeds of those teams, I’m sure there’d be something for everybody.

I have a question. It’s a bit of a personal question. And I’m really wondering why you do this. And the reason I’m asking that is because a couple of times in what you just said, you mentioned how it was good for your, your heart. If you like, it made you feel better. But also you said that it was helping other people.

And so let’s, for example, say that you answer a support ticket, you’ve helped somebody out. You’ve taken them from a place of not knowing, to a place of knowing. So, why do you give up your time? What is it that you get out of it? That may be simply that it makes you feel good, you want the project to be better, so that you can be employed from working with WordPress.

It may be that you just enjoy it, that you get to meet new people, attend events, go in any direction you like. I’m really curious.

[00:13:37] Olga Gleckler: I think I love everything. I put my trust in WordPress. This is best choice there is. I believe in it, and of course I’m going to improve, to put back this Five For The Future of myself. To be able to work and use WordPress continuously, and improve it like it’s obvious choice for people who are working on it. And this is only one way.

The second, I love all this gathering, all these people with passion. Open minded people and everyone is curious and want to learn and want to do something. And everyone is open and this is a safe environment. We’re all following code of conduct. So, it’s completely different space. Open source project. It’s blow minded. I think how it can change your mind and your perspective.

And of course I got job proposal, previous one, because people know me in the community. And this one is also partly because what I’m doing, because I’m well known, a developer. So I was wondering, where is the technical interview? And I was told that there is no need for you, because we know that you are up to scratch already. So it was a good point.

So people are amazing. You are improving your skills. You are getting understanding of your level in comparison to other people’s level. You can learn on their efforts and, for example, patches, examples, documentation, etc. So you are continuously improving yourself. A lot of reasons.

[00:15:26] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah, there are a lot of reasons. Really interesting though. There’s obviously a lot of desire from you. You obviously enjoy the whole ecosystem and all of the different tendrils and spokes on the wheel. But also interesting to note that you’ve also done your career prospects no harm by contributing, because you get to the point where you’ve contributed enough that people are going to start looking for you as somebody that they can trust and rely on. So you kind of jumped over the hurdle of job interviews a little bit there as well. So that’s really interesting.

Okay. Let’s move on to the, another part of the conversation, which is beginning contributing, how you might do that. Because I’m guessing that for some people, it may be that you hit the ground running and you decide, okay, I’d like to be part of the contribution community and you find the right project and you find the right thing to do immediately. But I’m also fairly sure that other people will get discouraged. They’ll perhaps jump in to the wrong part of the project, or maybe tackle something which is a little bit difficult. They can’t find the people to help them and so on. So I wonder if you’ve got any advice about that? Trying to contribute without getting discouraged.

[00:16:40] Olga Gleckler: Firstly, you need to know what is your learning curve, what is best for you. Sometimes it takes some time to figure it out. For example, some people are purely reading documentation and they are fine with it. But some people need video recording, or they need like a leg up from mentor or just little help for like facilitators.

And we are trying to provide all this to make it really easy. Right now, there is a barrier, yeah. But if you want to start to contribute to Core, for example, you need to go to new contributor chat. This is like bi-weekly meeting before the main dev chat. And it’s better to ask questions. For example, we are like going through the usual script, we are highlighting several documents and links you’re supposed to browse, but you can be stuck at any moment and actually these meetings are for providing help and we are there.

I’m mostly present there to help if people are stuck. And you need to understand that asking questions, it’s normal state for everyone. We all are continuously asking questions, and there is no stupid questions, because everyone knows that sometimes it’s hard to begin. Or even you can miss something obvious, even if you are the smartest person in the world, you can miss something obvious, because it’s obvious for someone else.

So, this is how you can start. But in addition to this, we started a contribute mentorship channel in the Slack. This is dedicated channel for contributor mentorship program. We just finished first pilot program when we took 13 people and they got their own mentors. But everyone else was hanging around, and facilitators like me was providing help for people and answering questions. Specific questions, like how to start, how to pick up ticket, what I should do etc. And if I am like with such background, what is better fit for me, etc.

But as well, apart from this, you can just poke around and be present in usual developers chats, but it can take time. So to make things quickly, you need some help from people. And we are actually ready for help. And in the documentation, there is a list of people whom you can ask if you have questions and difficulties. I’m listed there as well. So people are actually writing for me in DM if they don’t like comfortable enough to write openly, and asking such questions.

But if you want your question answered sooner, you can just go to Core channel in the Slack and ask this question openly for everyone to see. And this way you can contribute to other people’s success as well, because some people not ready to answer this, the same question, and they can see your question and pick up what was written to you. But you don’t need to jump in the middle of usual, regular chats. You need to wait until open floor if there is like a dev chat going on. So your question can be like, just be flooded with everything else which is happening. Or this is a release going on, no one will be able to answer your questions properly.

[00:20:27] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah, that’s a good point. Timing is crucial. I’m just going to circle back to the mentorship program because I think that’s really interesting. So this is a new initiative, and it may be of interest to people who perhaps have thought about contributing, but have been a little bit unwilling or discouraged, or they had some bumps in the road and decided not to continue.

Can you just tell us what that is, how that process works? And I know it’s new and I know you’re trying to figure it all out, but what is it? How does it work? My understanding is that you will be partnered, in certain teams, at least anyway, with people who have done the role that you’re hoping to do and can therefore sort of shepherd you for a period of weeks. Set the expectations for you, give you some advice about where to go for help and all of that kind of stuff. Have I more or less got that right?

[00:21:17] Olga Gleckler: Yeah, it was a pilot, so we were just trying things. The plan for people was decided, how they can proceed. And we received 50 applications, but was able to take 13 people to partner them with mentors. Mentors were people with wide knowledge inside the community and contribution, but not exactly the match on person’s interests. This person was providing like general support. And actually it’s works great.

They make contribution plans and providing feedback, what’s working, what is not working. And first two weeks mentees was doing learn courses. And I think 11 of them finished all courses. And then we started sessions, introductory sessions, for many WordPress teams. I had one introduction session for Core. It was also training team, polyglot team, support team, community team, and several other teams.

So we put a lot of efforts and most of these sessions are recorded, so you can rewatch them. And this was only the first pilot try. So I think the next time we will do better. And we actually scheduled this to be finished next day after release. So our mentees was able to see the whole process of the release alongside with us, and take part in this.

And several people actually contribute to Core. They made patches, they tested things. From our point of view, it’s a real success and we provided people ability to start quickly, and when there are dedicated people, it’s much easier to ask questions and get answers, and be oriented in this huge area. And because this mentees got an overview of the whole project, like general.

They was easy to understand what will fit them better. If they like Core, or if they want to translate things, or if they are going to support. Actually, I think one guy answered 200 questions on the support, on the spot, yeah. I have much difference in answering questions. It’s actually takes time, but he went passionate about this, and it’s great.

[00:23:43] Nathan Wrigley: You mentioned in the shared show notes that we’ve got together for this podcast episode well, I just think this is a lovely phrase, so I’m going to read it out. You wanted to talk about setting the right expectations and understanding of processes, and the fact that these are the key points to, this is the bit that I really like, joyful contribution. So I wonder if you could outline some of those things, some of the wrinkles, some of the expectations that you need to, not only have set for you, but need to set yourself. Because it may be that there are going to be bumps in the road, things that don’t quite work out.

You may tackle something which ultimately never gets used, or you may think that you’ve created a solution, I’m thinking about coding in Core in this particular case, which then has an impact on something else. And so it needs to be iterated on over and over again. So I guess what we’re trying to say is, it’s not always going to be plain sailing. Not every contribution that you make might be used or suitable. But there are things that you think you can do to make sure that the process is more likely to work in your favour.

[00:24:46] Olga Gleckler: Yeah, because it’s open source. We have a huge community and we are working together. And if you did something like your part, it’s a bit naive to expect that someone else will pick immediately, like next day. And everything will be done until Friday. It’s not happening. So if you know that things are taking time and can be more complicated than they look like in the first place, you can adjust your expectations and don’t expect your shiny new Core Contributor badge next morning on your profile.

You will get this badge, but only when you’re patch, or testing involvement, or other contribution will be going to release. So you will get this batch after the release, right after. But still it takes time. So if you are like in a hurry, you need to adjust.

And of course, sometimes people are creating a patch, like I’ve done everything and it’s not going anywhere. And they are becoming disappointing and interest is going away for contribution. So, what you should do if you did something and no one is paying attention, at least it looks like it. You need to understand that we have more than 8,000 open tickets. So, it’s a huge thing and we are continuously triaging these tickets. This is why we need continuously triage and component maintainers in the first place.

So if you did something and no one is bothering about it, you should look if this ticket has an owner. Owner is not a person who is doing the patch. This is person who should care, who supposed to care, about this ticket and push it forward. If this ticket has an owner, ping this owner right in the ticket. I did this, please take a look and how we can proceed.

And this ticket has no owner, you can’t ping component maintainer. Some components don’t have maintainers because we have a lot of components and a bit short in maintainers. What should you do? You can turn up on regular dev chat, wait until open floor, and ask about your ticket and what you want to do about this. There will be a lot of seasoned Core contributors around at this point, and your ticket will be noticed. If it will be like good to go further or you need to rework, it will be seen. But at least you will be starting in the right direction forward. So, you need to be a bit pushy about things to make them happen.

[00:27:31] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah, I guess that’s a really interesting lesson, isn’t it? If you contribute something and it doesn’t either immediately get noticed, or you feel that it’s not being noticed, I think that’s interesting advice. There are different ways that you can make your voice heard, shall we say, and you’ve mentioned some of those there.

You also wanted to point out that there are roadblocks in the timeline of WordPress, where if you submit, let’s say a patch to something, there are periods in the calendar where things are frozen. And so there are periods, for example, just prior to a release, when we get to release candidate one or beta one, where really, you’re probably best doing something else because there are freezes. You say that the polyglots team needs to be able to translate strings and things like that. So don’t know if you want to talk about that.

[00:28:19] Olga Gleckler: Yes, sometimes people made something and turn it up, right before the release. And they are disappointed because their patch will not go to this release. Because we have schedule and schedule for the next release, you can easily look on the make wordpress dot org slash core slash 6 hyphen four, for example, right now for this release, and understand the process.

So if, for example, you are working on enhancement or a feature, they need to be in the trunk before better one. Because it’s like a significant changes, and they need good testing coverage, et cetera. Big things needs to be, go first. If ticket has a keyword early, it should be even before beta one, like right after the previous release. It should be done quickly, because these things can impact a lot.

And then there’s a release candidate one. If you are working on a bug or if you are anything have content change, it should be in the trunk for release candidate one. Because with release candidate one, we have strings freeze. This is time before release candidate one and actual release for Polyglot’s team to be able to translate this new, or changed strings, to their own languages and make WordPress great in their own language.

People need time for this, and we have a huge amount of strings. If you will be starting to contribute to Polyglot’s team, you will start to understand that it’s also a big deal and a big job. So if you’re working on something, you need to fit your patch in this right moment and not after.

And of course, your patch needs to be tested, your patch needs to be reviewed from coding standards, for possible regressions. Possibly you will need to rework some things, or make changes in supporting documentation. For example, each function has this description, yeah, documentation for this function.

This is why WordPress is so great. It’s clear, good written documentation inside code. So everything should be fine before it will go to trunk, even if the thing is working itself. Sometimes you need to cover this code with unit tests and you need to take into account these things as well. Sometimes, most of the time, people are surprised about unit tests.

And we have a huge coverage of the code and it’s actually great. It makes things robust. So if you fix some bug, you are covering this part of the code with unit test to be sure that this will not be happening again. And it’s actually great.

[00:31:09] Nathan Wrigley: There are some places, probably it’s fair to say, which are better places to start. And again, in the show notes that you’ve shared, you’ve alerted me to the fact that it may be that you think something is going to be relatively straightforward. So again, we’re talking about bug fixes here. So we are talking about the code.

But it may be that you submit something and it turns out to be more difficult. So what you suggest then is that there are some recommendations for where a new contributor might start. So perhaps not the best idea to find the most difficult and challenging thing first time around. And there is some guidance that you can give in terms of where to look and tickets that are marked in a certain way. So yeah, I wonder if you could get into that.

[00:31:53] Olga Gleckler: Yes, sometimes ticket can be, look very simple, but can turn into a rabbit hole. For example, my best example so far is changing double equal to triple equal. It can bring a lot of regressions, and you will be browsing, trying to fix other things. And most likely this change will not be worth it. And it will be very difficult to convince everyone else that it’s actually worth doing. And, we will not have ten more bugs because of this one.

So sometimes good new patch, like a feature or enhancement, works better. And robust piece of code, when you have like head or tail, it’s great. And we have tickets which are marked as good first bugs. So if you are browsing tickets in Core track, you can see these tickets by this keyword, by search, custom search. And you can even subscribe to this good first bug hashtag on Twitter and following these tickets.

For example, if some ticket is not good for you. If you don’t like it or you don’t want to work on UI, for example, or you prefer some other stuff, you can be subscribed to this hashtag, and following along and see what is actually working for you. And start when there will be like right ticket for you.

But this can be like a bit shock, because a lot of people are subscribed to this good first bugs, they can be taken and already someone else can make a patch. But another thing is that if there is a patch, it does not mean that you cannot contribute because you can review this patch, you can make improvement to this patch.

You can collaborate with other people on this ticket and make it work, and be great and quick. So, don’t abandon some ticket if there is a patch. Work is not done with the patch, it’s just the beginning.

[00:34:01] Nathan Wrigley: You also make a recommendation to look out for, I guess, if you’re beginning at least anyway, to look out for tickets where the scope is really clear. And you’ve also got channels for feedback.

[00:34:13] Olga Gleckler: Yes, definitely. Because sometimes scope isn’t clear and it also can turn rabbit hole. So if you have any doubts about tickets, just any, like a tickling feeling inside your head that something is not actually right, you can turn up into the Core channel on Slack, and ask about this ticket.

Seasoned contributors will look through and clarify things for you. It’s actually better than put up a lot of work and then turn out that something was wrong in the beginning with the ticket and approach is not working. So don’t waste your time, and be ready to collaborate on the ticket from the beginning with other people. And it’s what actually is working.

If you are like staying alone and doing something, you can feel lonely and a bit abandoned, and then disappointed. But if you are open to conversation to other people and can receive help, you can provide this help as well. And we are all working on the final result, on WordPress, and it’s great.

[00:35:23] Nathan Wrigley: I like the way that you’ve rounded off the show notes, because you make the point that whole process of improving WordPress is a continuous learning process. And you may feel that you’ve just provided lots of your time. Maybe your patch wasn’t used, or you ran up against something which you couldn’t work out for yourself, and you needed additional help.

But you make the point that it’s okay, you know. It wouldn’t be wise to view that as a waste of time because even negative experiences, when you view them from a distance can often be helpful. You may learn something along the way. So negative results, negative experiences may also turn out with time to be positive experiences. And so I guess that’s kind of a nice way to frame it.

[00:36:05] Olga Gleckler: Yeah, you can like cut out things that are not working and to make clear paths to things which are working. And then the result, everyone’s contributions count. No matter if you make patch and it wasn’t working, and someone else went and improved your patch and make some additional things. And another iteration, another approach discovered some other possibilities. Upon your negative result, they will be going forward.

[00:36:37] Nathan Wrigley: Just before we round it off, I do wonder what your thoughts are. It’s very clear from everything that you’ve said that you’re very committed, you’re very keen. You love all this stuff. I wonder what the state of contributions is? I’m particularly thinking about things like the pandemic, for example. And whether or not that had an impact in the amount of time that people were able to give.

My understanding is that contributions may have taken a little bit of a dip. I don’t know where we’re at right now. Obviously the program that you mentioned for mentoring earlier is a great way to encourage people, to get people back in. But I don’t know what the situation is. Are people contributing this year in the same way that they were, let’s say, five years ago? I don’t know if you have any data on that at all.

[00:37:24] Olga Gleckler: I don’t think any data, but yeah, we had a drop in contribution when pandemic started, because everyone was distressed and we need to take care about our family, our health. So we went through this and not once, but several times having this thing.

But right now I think we are on the right track. It comes down and we used to new things, and it’s actually turned to be better for everyone. Because, for example, employers understand that people are able to work remotely. And many people right now are working remotely. They got more time. They are saving time on this road to work and back at home.

So they are keeping this time and they can contribute more easily. I’m an example for this because I’m working remotely all these nine years. This is why I was able to contribute at the beginning, because otherwise I wouldn’t have time. So I think pandemic, it was horrible, yeah, but it’s turned for the better. And right now we can do more. We can contribute more and we can be more flexible in what we are doing.

[00:38:45] Nathan Wrigley: Olga, I think we’ll wrap it up there. But before we do, obviously, you’re very keen, and if your passion for contributing has rubbed off on somebody else, and perhaps they would like to talk to you before they jump in with both feet. I wonder if you wouldn’t mind telling us a little bit about where we can find you. That might be a website or a Twitter handle, whatever you like.

[00:39:07] Olga Gleckler: I think best place to find me is on Slack. Why my name? Because there are several channels, I can put people in the right direction straight away. And because I’m almost always there. I just want everyone to join. But, yes, if you have problems with Slack, and it can happen, then you can reach me on Twitter, and I will be able to help you join WordPress org, create an account, etc. But, probably you can try it yourself.

[00:39:42] Nathan Wrigley: Olga Gleckler, thank you very much for joining us on the podcast today. I really appreciate it.

On the podcast today we have Olga Gleckler.

Olga is a self-taught developer with many years experience. After initially pursuing a career in marketing, she turned back to her passion for programming and became a full-time developer. She has been contributing to WordPress for four years and is currently serving as the Core triage lead for version 6.4. In addition, Olga is a maintainer for two components in Core, and actively participates in various teams within the WordPress community. Outside of work, she is also writing a fantasy book, which is a significant personal project for her.

Olga has tried her hand in various teams within the community, ranging from Polyglots to Training, Support, and more. She challenges the commonly held misconception that only coders can contribute to the WordPress project, highlighting the many different ways individuals can contribute without coding skills.

During our conversation, Olga shares some examples of non-coding contributions that can be made to the WordPress project. We talk about the process of submitting patches and contributions to WordPress, discussing the schedule for releases, and the importance of understanding the processes and deadlines.

Olga also emphasises the essential steps of testing, reviewing for coding standards, and ensuring correct documentation in order to make impactful contributions.

Olga’s journey in the WordPress community has been very varied. She discusses how being a part of this ecosystem has improved her career prospects and gained her trust from others. However, she acknowledges that not everyone finds their place immediately, and may struggle to get started. She explores how to contribute without becoming discouraged, and shares her experiences in the mentorship program that paired mentors with mentees in navigating the WordPress community.

Throughout the conversation, Olga shows a deep passion for the WordPress project and the collaborative nature of the community. She reminds us that contributing to open-source projects requires patience and persistence, and shares her insights on learning methods, seeking guidance, and asking questions in order to make progress.

If you’ve thought about contributing to WordPress, but are not sure where to begin, this episode is for you.

Useful links.

Contribute Mentorship Program

Learn WordPress

WordPress 6.4 Development Cycle

Polyglots Team

WordPress Core Trac

Olga’s Twitter

by Nathan Wrigley at September 13, 2023 02:00 PM under podcast

Do The Woo Community: La Comunidad de WordPress en Español / WordPress Community in Spanish

Únete a Juan Hernando, Ericka Barboza y Javier Casares en una animada conversación sobre la comunidad de WordPress en España y Latinoamérica.

>> The post La Comunidad de WordPress en Español / WordPress Community in Spanish appeared first on Do the Woo - a WooCommerce Builder Community .

by BobWP at September 13, 2023 09:23 AM under Podcast Guests from South America

Follow our RSS feed: 

WordPress Planet

This is an aggregation of blogs talking about WordPress from around the world. If you think your blog should be part of this site, send an email to Matt.

Official Blog

For official WordPress development news, check out the WordPress Core Blog.


Last updated:

September 24, 2023 07:45 AM
All times are UTC.