The WordPress news from the last week which commenced Monday 14th August 2023
Another week, and we’re bringing you the latest WordPress news from the last seven days, including…
- The Page Builder Summit is back for version 6.0 and we’re after sponsors!
- What does WordPress mean to you after 20 years?
- Alex Stine becomes the first recipient of the WP Community Collective Fellowship.
- $48K has been allocated to assist attendees for the WordPress Community Summit.
- Crocoblock are holding an AI summit in September this year.
- There’s some more acquisitions in the WordPress space, some familiar names have been bought. Will this affect the product’s pricing?
- The story that keeps on giving… The utility of WordPress security plugins.
- Some deals this week, 30% off WS Form and 50% off LifterLMS.
There’s a lot more than this, so scroll down and take a look…
This Week in WordPress #265 – “Not angry, just a nutcase!”
With Nathan Wrigley, Mark Westguard, Anil Gupta, Tim Nash.
Recorded on Monday 21st August 2023.
If you ever want to join us live you can do that every Monday at 2pm UK time on the WP Builds LIVE page.
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Transcript (if available)
These transcripts are created using software, so apologies if there are errors in them.
[00:00:04] Nathan Wrigley: This episode of the WP Builds podcast is brought to you by GoDaddy Pro, the home of managed WordPress hosting that includes free domain, SSL, and 24 7 support. Bundle that with The Hub by GoDaddy Pro to unlock more free benefits to manage multiple sites in one place, invoice clients, and get 30% off new purchases. Find out more at go dot me forward slash WP Builds.
It's time for this week in WordPress episode number 265 entitled not angry. Just a nutcase.
It was recorded on Monday the 21st of August, 2023. My name's Nathan Wrigley and I'll be joined by two. Maybe three, but mostly two guests this week, I'm joined by Mark Westguard also by Tim Nash. And then right at the very beginning of the show by Anil Gupta. unfortunately, his audio was failing. So he decided to take himself out the show. Nevertheless, he joined us for a little while.
It's a WordPress podcast. So of course we talk about WordPress things. We talk about the fact that the page builder summit is coming around. Again, we're looking for people to join the attendee list, but also some sponsors. We talk about the fact that WordPress is 20, that happened a little while ago, but an article cropped up recently, which made us think. What are the things that you enjoy about WordPress? So we dwell on that for a little bit. Alex Stein has been given the first contributor. Fellowship from the WPCC. What does that mean? And how will it benefit the community?
Also, there are various people who have been given a stipend, some money to attend the WordPress community. They've been afforded, travel and expenses. We talk about what that means and who's benefited. Jonathan wold came on a podcast with me for the WP Tavern and he talks about Guildenberg. What is it? And how does it work?
There's an AI summit around the corner. Wordpress.org have decided that they may open up support threads indefinitely. There's an acquisition this week, which we talk about. And also right at the end, we talk about how people can now. Well, scientists can now decide whether you're listening to pink. Floyd's the wall just by scanning your brain and some security stuff, right. At the end. It's all coming up next on this week in WordPress.
Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, and more. Hey, how are you doing? It is this week in WordPress episode number 265. I'm joined by two fine guests. I'm not actually, I'm joined by three because Anil is backstage. Anil will just. Do the whole introduction to these two, and then we will drag you onto the stage. I think he's had a bit of a problem locating the link for the show, but, um, well, let's, let's go there.
I desperately want my finger to go. Oh, if only you weren't about 4, 000 miles away, we should totally organize that one day where you have like a finger on a stick or something and just drag. Mark Westgard from WS form. How are you doing Mark Westgard from WS form?
[00:03:22] Mark Westguard: I'm doing very well. Nathan Wrigley from WP Build.
How are you?
[00:03:25] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah, great. Thank you. I think I've probably said Mark's bio. He is the founder and developer of WSForm, which is a fantastic WordPress form solution. You can find more at wsform. US, I think, aren't you? You've got yourself a sponsorship booth.
[00:03:43] Mark Westguard: Yep. Sponsoring and heading out on Tuesday. Looking forward to seeing
[00:03:46] Nathan Wrigley: everyone there.
Nice. And we're also joined by There he is, Tim Nash. Now, oh yeah, that'd be great, wouldn't it? Just a little scratch on the head. Uh, yeah, how are you
[00:03:59] Tim Nash: doing, Tim? You all right? I'm all right.
[00:04:01] Nathan Wrigley: How are you? Yeah, good, good. Tim is a security consultant with a background in development and system admin. He's worked with WordPress for nearly two decades and founded one of the very first commercial WordPress plugins.
Today, he provides security reviews, consulting, and training. And as an active member of the W of the UK WordPress community, Tim likes to scare people and enlighten people at conferences. You've adapted that sentence very well. Uh, you can find out more at Tim Nash. Co uk So thank you for joining us, Tim, and we're gonna bring onto the screen.
Anil, how are you doing? Anil? Let's see if your tech is working. Are you here or ?
[00:04:45] Anil Gupta: Doing good.
[00:04:45] Nathan Wrigley: Doing good. How are you? Yeah, good. Thank you. Um, I'm sorry about the link. Obviously something got booked somewhere, but it's an absolute pleasure to have you with us. Um, Anil Gupta is the c e o and co-founder of Multi Dots.
Multicolab and dot store. You'll be able to give those a little bit of a Google, but it's an absolute pleasure having you on the show today. Hopefully the first of many times we're going to drone on about WordPress. Cause that's what we always do. Sometimes we go a little bit off piste just for your information, Anil.
Um, I talk. All the time, unless people interrupt me. So it's important that you interrupt me whenever, whenever possible. Otherwise I'll just consume the whole 90 minutes. Or you can just sit back and relax. Yeah, that's right. And I will just keep talking. It's never ending. I'll tell you, it never ends. Um, Anil, I don't know if it's an echo that I can hear coming through your system, but until you came in, I didn't hear an echo if you've got some headphones with a wire.
Um, it might be a good idea to go and put those in because they probably won't. Give me just one second then. Yeah, I'll, I'll put you on mute quickly whilst you go and do that. And I'll, I'll just introduce a few bits and pieces. Okay. Let me share the screen so that we can orientate ourselves. You know, the drill.
We're WP builds. We have a website called WP builds. com. If you go there, you can sign up to our email newsletter and all of that kind of stuff. But also, uh, we have a thing. This thing is called the Page Builder Summit. I say we, um, it is actually Anshan, rou and I, we have, uh, this summit which comes around sometimes, once, often, twice a year.
This year it's happening on the 18th to the 22nd of September. It's at the very hard to remember. Page builder summit.com, U r l, let me say that once more. Page Builder Summit. Dot com. If you want to join the wait list, just add your name to that list. Basically what we do is each year we just, or rather each time it comes around, we kind of like clear out the email list so that nobody who doesn't want to get the emails gets the emails.
So if you've been a participant in the, in the past. Probably the best bet is to just go and sign up again. That way we can keep you informed about all of the bits and pieces that are going on pagebuildersummit. com. And also you'll notice the fairly subtle banner at the bottom there, which, you know, doesn't use up about a sixth of the entire screen, um, that's asking for sponsors if WordPress.
Business. Um, and you fancy sponsoring that event. There's a certain Mark Westgard has done just that. He's availed himself of a sponsorship option. If you fancy doing that, then you can click this link down here or just go to pagebuildersummit. com forward slash sponsors. That page looks a little bit like this, and we will be able to tell you everything that you need to know about sponsoring that event and making it happen.
Yes, man. Yeah, thank you, Mark. That's great. Um, yeah. That's really kind of you. I appreciate it. Okay, let's get on to the WordPressy stuff. We've got, I don't know, maybe 12 or 13 different articles that are going to be coming onto the screen this week. Oh, no, first of all, I do apologize. We've got to do our, got to do our hellos, haven't we?
Let's see if we've got any people joining in. We do, we do, we do. We have Cameron Jones joining us from sunny Brighton. Hello, he says. Hi, Cameron. This is Bob, who, uh, That's great. Uh, either the icon doesn't come through or Bob, the characters, colon hand, hyphen, pink, hyphen, wafer, waving. Go along. Uh, anyway. Hi, I'm imagining that's Bob Elliot Sowersby from Bridlington, just down the coast from me.
How you doing? Sam Alderson says, hi folks. That's nice to have you with us. We've got Zubair Siddique saying hello. Nathan, Mark, and Tim, and now Anil, as well. Every week, Peter Ingersoll drops into the comments and tells us what the weather is like in Connecticut. So, here we are. Uh, good morning from beautiful Cape Cod, Massachusetts.
Oh! He's elsewhere this week, am I right? Uh, 22 degrees centigrade, 72... On the sunny skies Marcus Burnett from go daddy says hello. Hello from the airport. Oh, he's Now mark marcus burnett will be seeing you there in a couple of days time Uh, yeah, that is hardcore as bob says what else have we got? What's the mute button for?
Oh, you can just mute us, Bob, if that's what that's for, yeah, yes. Um, and then, hey, tomorrow on Do The Woo, talking to Anshan and Nathan on the show. Yeah, that's nice, me and Anshan, we're talking about the PageBudder Summit with Bob, so he's gonna put it out as a podcast, and he says, if you listen to the show, play the drinking game and see how many, oh yeah, I had a bit of a game where I'd said the word.
Sponsor the page, build a summit about 40 times. It was never not funny. It was actually about the third time in, it got really boring, but I kept doing it anyway. Greetings. From Pretoria, excuse me. I can't say the word Pretoria, South Africa. Well, there we go. Uh, if you're joining us and you fancy making some comments, feel free to do that.
That would be really, really nice. Probably let's have a little thing. What's going to be the best little thing for me to mention here? Ooh, yeah. Send people to this link pay wpbuilds. com forward slash live. If you go there. You need to be logged into a Google account because it's YouTube comments. If you're in our Facebook group and you don't want to be anonymous, you go to this URL, wav.
video forward slash lives forward slash Facebook, and then we get to see a little tiny icon of you. Not just uh, you know that generic icon. So yeah do that. Right. There we go. Let's get on with it So this is um wordpress. org. They've got a page called wp20 a heartfelt. Thanks I have not been using wordpress for 20 years.
I'm probably on about the oh, I don't know the nine year mark something like that and I I Put this in our show notes, hoping that the, the three of you would have a chance to think about the, the topic of what does WordPress mean to you? Because that's really what this topic was. It was a, it was a chance for some, some famous people, if you like in the WordPress space to put their commentary on what it is that they've enjoyed over the last 20 years.
And, uh, so I thought that'd be quite a nice thing for us four to do. I'm going to kick us off. Um, I think the best thing for me about WordPress, I keep saying this over and over again, is the, um, It's the community. The fact that a, I get to make a living out of using WordPress, which I'm sure. Would cascade all the way down the people on this show We're all in some way making a living out of wordpress But also the fact that who knew that you could actually make real friends in the wordpress space Started out using it.
It was a it was a wordpress, you know download. I got it off the. org website Didn't really know there was a community knew that There must be some kind of community because it's free software and I kind of understood how that worked. But then two or three years later, started to attend things like WordCamps, started to realize there were actually people like me in the world.
Um, and my wife had to suffer less because I could actually vent all the nonsense to them instead of her. And that's it really for me. Beautiful. The fact that I can make a living out of this free software and also the fact that there's a full on community of people, I'm going to do a bit of a round Robin, if you like, so what I'll do is I'll kick off with.
Mark, I don't know if you had a chance to give that any thought but what what are your things that you're grateful for in? The wordpress space. Yeah
[00:12:15] Mark Westguard: similar to you really. Um, i've been developing websites for about 20 27 years now and Moving into the wordpress world was a big change for me. I was you know, kind of commercial profit profit profit um, and it was really nice to fall into a space where Money
[00:12:37] Nathan Wrigley: where you could make no profit at all.
Yeah, yeah, yeah.
[00:12:39] Mark Westguard: I'm now broke.
[00:12:40] Nathan Wrigley: Um,
[00:12:45] Mark Westguard: No, it's, I mean, you know, you, you've got to be part of that community. I love the community. I cannot wait to see everybody on Tuesday. Um, we sponsor all the, all the, uh, flagship, uh, work camps and really looking forward to doing that, um, and giving back as much as I can. And it's been, it's, it's a refreshing way of working, really.
I love the whole. Concept of open source. And I love that, you know, when I was first doing it, I was a little bit skeptical about how can you make a living out of open source, listen to a lot of stuff by Matt Mullenweg, in fact, um, talking about open source and the licensing around that. Um, and it's, it's just a fantastic way of working.
So very, very grateful to the community, grateful to anybody that's worked with me and looking forward to many years ahead of it. Nice
[00:13:32] Nathan Wrigley: Good answer mark. I like that one. Should we go around to tim? I don't know if you've had a chance to think about this, but if you do, what's your thoughts?
[00:13:38] Tim Nash: See if i've gone first i'm gonna give him more or less exactly the same answer.
That's okay. You can do it again um But yeah, I attended my first wordpress event 16 years ago. Ooh, and I have friends who I made at that very first event who are still friends today Um, which is a powerful thing in itself this idea that you could Go to any other work in inverted comma event And make friends that last decades long.
That's Uh a testament to open source, but it's a testament to wordpress as well and the type of Geek who would go to those sort of events. Um, beyond that, obviously I make my living here. Um, and I don't have to do Drupal anymore, which is yeah,
[00:14:25] Nathan Wrigley: I get it. I know what you mean. That is, isn't it really curious though?
I wonder what that event was like just described. So 16 years ago, we were what? Four years plus, maybe a little bit more into the project. That must've been a fairly early event. Cause I imagine the community wasn't particularly massive at that point. What, where was it? What was it?
[00:14:44] Tim Nash: So, um, at the time it was the very first, uh, WordPress North.
As it became known, we, we had two user groups in the uk, WordPress South, and WordPress North. WordPress South became WordPress London quite quickly. Uh, WordPress North, uh, morphed into something called Northern Bloggers for a while, uh, before becoming WordPress leads. And they're the two oldest user groups in the country and Uh sort of still both going wordpress leads is still going online and is hopefully going back into person in september And wordpress london is on a bit of a hiatus, but it's been going pretty much constant Both of them have been going constantly from 2007 2008 time.
Uh, but yeah, so it was um weird it was held in a part of a university, uh, so, uh And there was a small group of people, uh, most of whom didn't know each other. There was, and the first few events were very, very geeky. Um, and then they started opening up to more people from the community. It, it gained a little over the years, it gained a little bit of a blogger focus because there weren't enough people doing technical stuff.
And WordPress was being adopted by all these different people. So it became a bit more open and then. Over the continuing over the years, it's morphed it back into WordPress leads, which is a A general user group. It has some very advanced talks and some very general talks And there's such a broad breadth of people.
There's everybody from ex lawyers there through to Priests who are developers through to agency owners and it's just a mingle of
[00:16:21] Nathan Wrigley: everybody Cameron Jones, who is, uh, we mentioned him, you've said hi at the top of the show. He's been going to the Leeds meetups online while he's been here in the UK. He's having a bit of a sabbatical to play cricket, uh, in the UK.
I know, um, he's been enjoying the, the Leeds meetups and, uh, yeah. You never know, uh, I know he's traveling around the UK a little bit. If you still travel around in September, Cameron, you could possibly attend the, uh, the real world event. Oh, lovely. That's really nice. And Anil, tell us about your, your favorite bits about WordPress.
[00:16:58] Anil Gupta: all right. Before I say that, I want to make sure that my mic is still okay.
[00:17:03] Nathan Wrigley: Nice, nice sound. Very nice.
[00:17:07] Anil Gupta: Great. I just set up this, um, home studio like just last week. So, uh, yeah, so there are like still a lot of, uh, tools and gadgets there. So I'm
[00:17:18] Nathan Wrigley: still playing with them. Yeah, still embedding them.
I've been doing this for about eight years and my place is still a tip. Yours is way better already. Thank you. Um,
[00:17:29] Anil Gupta: so yeah, as we are on the topic of, um, WordPress community, um, and open source, um, I wanted to go back a little bit on my college days, you know, so when I was in college, uh, uh, we I studied computer science, and at that time, uh, when I wanted to, uh, learn a programming language and, uh, uh, start, uh, uh, you know, building websites, uh, we had a very unique challenge because the place where I grew up, um, was a small town in India and, uh, the accessibility of technology and computer Was determined by, uh, the price of the software licensing.
[00:18:17] Nathan Wrigley: um, our college,
[00:18:19] Anil Gupta: uh, was. Very, uh, selective about what kind of technology, uh, they will be, we will be able to learn and, um, experiment with. So it was very interesting at the time there was like, uh, all this dot net and Microsoft, like all those different, um, softwares. But our college, one of our college professor, he determined that we need to bring in open source because if you bring in open source, then we will have.
More computers and we can install the operating systems and all that in more computers and students can learn so in a way Yeah, I was a part of that initial group where we started experimenting with Linux operating system, so we installed in pretty much all the college computer So that allowed all the students to learn more open source Programming language like PHP and, uh, MySQL and all that.
So, uh, yeah, so that was kind of like my first, um, firsthand experience with that. And that become a turning point, uh, for my life and career, because from that point onwards, I started learning PHP, started building websites when I was in college. Um, and yeah, so, you know, so that's kind of like how my entry happened in the open source world.
And. Um, in 2014, I, that was the first time I traveled, uh, outside India and I was in San Francisco and there was a, uh, WordCamp San Francisco. I don't think so. At that time, they still started WordCamp US, so they were still... Yeah. That's right. Yeah. WordCamp San Francisco and the different cities. So that was the first time where I met a lot of different people from WordPress community.
Before that, I just built one or two websites on WordPress, uh, but that was my first. Experience and interface with the WordPress community. And it was really good because people were so nice and warm and welcoming. Um, and that was a point where my business partner and I, we, and we went back to India. We decided that, all right, you know, now we love this community.
We enjoy working with the, uh, talking to and, and interacting with the people. And that was a point in my agency days in multi dots where we decided like now we want to focus more on the WordPress based website design and development.
[00:20:55] Nathan Wrigley: That's really cool. I hadn't realized the whole, um, the sort of groundswell of open source that India probably has and how much of a, well, advantage, in air quotes, that gives to children coming through the education system.
The education system here in the UK is basically a Windows based enterprise. You know, there might be some schools that can, that can have Macs, but typically the, the budgets constrain that, but they can afford PCs. And so usually it's loaded up with. Windows based software and the Children are often taught just to to adapt things through Microsoft products.
So the part of the curriculum is literally to, you know, work with spreadsheets and so on. There's been a bit of a move over the last, let's say, five or six years towards Um, towards moving away from that. And so things like Raspberry Pi and those kind of initiatives have begun to step in. But I think we're catching up in that sense.
If you've got a whole whole generation of people, you're working with Linux from a very early age. That's really curious. Yeah. Thank you. That was that was a nice bunch of stories. I appreciate that. That's great. Okay, let's move on. That was a nice piece. The next one is also extremely nice. This is to say, well it's a WP Tavern piece.
The title is WP Community Collective Funds First Fellowship for Accessibility Contributor Alex Stein. Um, over the last... Period. We've mentioned the WP community collective. They are an organization which is setting themselves up to offer a variety of different fellowships across the WordPress space.
I've got the right word. I hope. Yeah. Fellowship seems to be featured there. And so they have a, it's almost like a bit like a GoFundMe page. They come up with a solid project and a solid amount of money, which needs to be acquired from community members before a certain thing can happen. And so, in the case of Alex, who you can see in the picture if you're watching this, but, you know, if you go to the Tavern article, you'll be able to see it.
Uh, Alex is standing there with Amber Hines. Um, Uh, WordCamp US, I think it was, and Alex has, uh, finally been in receipt. Well, I don't know if the money's gone over yet, but the, the goal has been met. I can't remember what the numbers were, but essentially the, the amount of money raised will enable Alex to spend five hours.
A week, um, working on WordPress and devoting himself to the accessibility cause within WordPress. You may or may not know that Alex is a fully blind. I think is the phrase used in the article. Yeah. A fully blind individual contributor. And so has got an awful lot of experience of using WordPress in a scenario that I literally don't.
No, anything about there is actually a really interesting video. Um, here it's linked in the article. Uh, you, I won't show it on the screen, but there's like an hour long video where Alex goes through the Gutenberg project from an accessibility point of view. And it's a bit of a. Well, to coin a phrase, a bit of an eye opener because you really genuinely do get an impression of WordPress from a completely different angle.
So he's in receipt of this money. He can now start to focus on that. Oh, there it is. That's the video I was talking about. It's on the bottom of this post. Um, he can start to dedicate some time, make the project better. And I just think this is really fabulous. If you click through to the open collective link on that page, you will be sent to the funding page.
And you can see that the WPCC, the WP community collective have actually got a whole variety of things that they're trying to support in the near future. Some of them are. Further towards the goal than others, but as they get to 100%, that project will obviously drop and all of the bits and pieces will start to happen.
So just to say, whoever contributed to that, I think there was quite a few companies, 59 individuals and organizations that, uh, that contributed to that. Amazing. Thank you so much. And let's hope that Alex. Is soon in receipt of that money and can get to work So I don't know if any of the three of you have anything you want to add to that As I said at the top of the show and i'll interrupt just buy in whenever you like.
So over to you
[00:25:14] Tim Nash: I was just gonna quickly say isn't it nice that we've got a um, the community collective exists as a concept Quite nice that it's separated away from the foundation and all the other usual sets of drama generating groups that we have it's it's it's a group with a single purpose and they seem to be doing a really good job that's showing actual results which i think should be encouraged because i think that sort of diversity is a really good thing and everything is to say that it's really nice to see accessibility being funded because it is not something that gets funded very often.
And when it does, it's being funded because of controversy and because things went wrong. So it's nice to see funding for the sake of funding and getting ahead of it in the
[00:26:01] Nathan Wrigley: first place. Nice.
[00:26:02] Mark Westguard: Yeah, it's the likes of Alex and other people I know in the community that have certainly opened my eyes to accessibility.
Um, more so than I, you know, ever took it into account. Um, being a plug in developer, accessibility, because we, we develop forms. Accessibility is very important, uh, with forms and, and making sure that we have everything correct. And, um, just, you know, listening to Amber and, and other people in the community about that has really opened my eyes to it.
So thank you to those people for having a voice and, and speaking about it within the community.
[00:26:36] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah, I imagine it was a lot of hard work putting this together. You can see that there's, um, been a lot of thought about the topics that they're going to cherry pick first, but also just setting it up and they've gone through a financial system, which means they're kind of, uh, inoculated a bit from, you know, actually controlling that money.
I think it's some kind of escrow system where you pay the money, it sits in escrow, it's held, they're not responsible for it, and then it's released when it's all... When it's all been arrived, you know, and so essentially nobody's getting their hands into that money and they've taken great pains to, to make sure that that's all transparent as well.
So, sorry. I know Alex, sorry,
[00:27:12] Mark Westguard: carry on. Alex. Sorry. I know Alex contributes not only on a software level, but also um, in events as well. So he's, you know, he is making sure that events are accessible as, as well as software being accessible, which is equally as important.
[00:27:25] Nathan Wrigley: Nice. Anil, anything to add to that?
I think you might have muted yourself, Anil. Uh, if you haven't, if you haven't muted yourself, we cannot hear you. Um, one thing to say, Anil, is that we have had, uh, on this platform, we have had people having the same problem. If it persists and we can't hear you in a few seconds, what I recommend is just, just refresh the browser.
I'll drop you back into the call and typically that seems to make it work. But I can hear you giggling there, so I think it's working again. All right, can you hear me now?
[00:27:58] Anil Gupta: Good. Yeah, I was good. I was saying that, um, I have
[00:28:02] Nathan Wrigley: one, uh, kind of a bit choppy now Uh, i'm going to recommend refreshing the browser Anil and we'll come back to you.
That's probably the best advice i've got Yeah, come back to us Uh, okay. So just on that note here are the the things which are to be funded and are being funded you can see here's Goal number one, well, I'm reading them from left to right. Um, I think this is the order in which they dropped. So I'm calling it goal number one was the accessibility fellowship.
You see from this green line that Alex has received actually a little bit over 113% they wanted to capture, uh, they wanted to capture just over just, sorry, just shy of. 5, 000. They actually received 5, 500. Uh, but the, the other things which are going on at the moment is you can get an individual membership.
There's the WPCC organizing fund, and there's just a plain old donation option. But my understanding is that as soon as this one was funded, The next, um, the next goal will be set up. So hopefully we'll see that, uh, in the next few days. Right. Let's put Anil back on the screen. Here he is. Let's have a listen, see if we can get your mic going there.
All right. Yep. Got you. Can you hear me now?
[00:29:12] Anil Gupta: Um, so yeah, what I was saying is. I have one suggestion on that, which is, um, anytime, any, um, events like somebody supporting an accessibility or any cause, any good cause that someone is supporting, I feel like, you know, sometimes those news get buried into, uh, a lot of other things that's going on in, in general WordPress community.
So my question is. Is there any way where we can follow, you know, any, um, any support or any, um, event that's going on which is supporting any kind
[00:29:54] Nathan Wrigley: of cause? Um, the answer is to that, I don't really know. Apart from following initiatives like the WPCC. Um, and I imagine in here somewhere there is a way of subscribing, so I don't, I don't really have an answer to you on that one.
Um, no, I'm not sure the other thing to say, Anil, and I don't know if it's true. Mark and Tim, you can either give me a thumbs up or a thumbs down. Um, is Anil's audio really like hit and miss? Are you getting him? Yeah, it's a bit of a thumbs down. So something peculiar, Anil, is going on with your audio.
Basically about maybe 80% of what you said came through and we got parts of words and not parts of other words, that kind of thing. So what I'm going to recommend is go and have a, go and have a fiddle. Um, Drop yourself off this call, go and have a fiddle. See if you can make it whole and then come back in.
Because the way it is at the minute, we won't be able to understand what you're saying, sadly. Um, so is that all right with you? I know that's a bit abrupt, but would you, would you be all right going and having a play with your audio, get those drivers going or whatever it is that needs to be going and then hop back in, is that okay?
Sounds good. Yeah, lemme try that. Okay. Thank you. See you in a minute. Okay, so we've got some nice commentary about that. We have got Zabir saying he thinks that the, uh, W P C C is a great initiative by the WP community to fund Alex. That's really nice. We've got Sam saying love the work that W P C C are doing.
Uh oh. , uh, Marcus has just given us a little bit of a. Bit of a catch up on the status of his airplane. , uh, he's gonna catch, jump on the plane now, so we'll catch up with us later. Thanks for that. And there was another one a little bit further. Still watch us while on the
[00:31:35] Tim Nash: plane. What's that? Sorry. He can still watch us up while on the plane.
[00:31:39] Nathan Wrigley: can still watch that is
[00:31:42] Tim Nash: nog And watch five more seconds. That's yeah,
[00:31:46] Nathan Wrigley: exactly. That's terrible. Marcus, how do you, um, just going back to the, the talk that we were, the conversation we were having a few minutes ago, um, Sam. Uh, we're saying that she'd love to meet more UK based people. Honestly, the Leeds WordPress meetup is a good place to go.
I would say that's still going and September should also work. Oh, WordCamp Whitley Bay. Of course, one of the only
[00:32:10] Tim Nash: WordCamp in the UK for the foreseeable future. And one that, uh, I'm pretty sure surprised most people. And when we all been going, been moaning the fact that there was absolutely no way we could have a WordCamp in the UK because of.
Pricing and costs and then all of it and then up it comes. So that's in
[00:32:27] Nathan Wrigley: september Yeah, and it's in it's in my neck of the woods as well. Unfortunately, I can't go it literally it's a one day event And it coincides with some immovable object in my life. So I won't be able to make that. But yeah, that's, isn't that great?
Just sort of snuck under the radar. Nobody was, saw that one coming. It's brilliant. Um, da, da, da, da, da, da, da. What have we got here? I know that Mark will be, oh, uh, yeah. You see, Marcus, Michelle knows how to do it. She's driving, but she's listening in Starbucks. Thank you. Thanks, Michelle. I appreciate it. Um, da, da, da, just trying to separate anything out.
Yeah, you're right. Cameron, uh tim's hit the nail on the head. There doesn't seem to be anything down south at the moment I'm surprised there's
[00:33:10] Mark Westguard: nothing in in brighton
[00:33:12] Nathan Wrigley: for work. Yeah Well, there has been there's been a lot of stuff down there hasn't there but it's all post pandemic. Everything's just gone completely I believe
[00:33:20] Tim Nash: wordpress brighton is restarting.
Um, okay They're they're trying to I know I I spoke to someone who was asking about uh speakers and the
problem with That all the wordpress user groups have is a location Because since post pandemic, finding a location that's willing to host a group of random people together at a cost effective, or ideally free, just doesn't happen. And all of a sudden we've gone from, uh, the cost of a venue being just a line item, to now being the cost of a venue and insurance.
Suddenly insurance is like the most expensive thing, often significantly more than the venue is. Um, so it's difficult to find places to, to host. And, uh, honestly, running a user group, I did it for 10 plus years, it's really hard work. And it's really, even with any, we've got lots of advantages now, there's lots of support structure, but it's still a horrific amount of work to do.
And if you don't think someone's going to turn up, Then you're just likely to not want to do it. London. It's too, they just can't find a venue. Uh, I think Brighton struggling for speakers. Um, I know Cheltenham was considering restarting Manchester. I don't think has any plans on restarting. Um, and then then we've got all the smaller user groups, some of which have been doing online stuff.
Yeah, getting it back in person is really hard, and especially without the core community being brought together for WordCamps. Whenever you saw a WordCamp, within the next two months, you'd see a new user group. And at its height, we had 25 to 27 active WordPress use groups at the same time. In the UK. So we had 27 user groups all going on the same month.
You could be, you could have WordPress pretty much every day of the month. And now that number has dropped to, I think, three or four. Um, and none of them are in person at the
[00:35:24] Nathan Wrigley: moment. Cameron makes the point that. Uh, London and Brighton were running earlier this year, but stopped again before he arrived. Uh, question mark on Scotland, I genuinely, uh, bo on a, we, I dunno how you pronounce that name, but, uh, dunno.
[00:35:41] Tim Nash: Aaron, it's Aaron . Oh, is it Aaron? Pronounce it. You pronounce it. Aaron, do you not know , Glasgow and Edinburgh? Um, both used to have user groups. Uh, Glasgow's not been active for a while. Edinburgh's not been active for a while. There was Aberdeen and, uh, Dundee, but both have ceased. And I don't see Aberdeen or Dundee ever coming back unless there is a person there, you know, maybe someone who develops plugins in Aberdeen who could start a user group.
Uh, but for, um, yeah, Glasgow and Edinburgh, there's a small chance they'll come back. But they lost their main, uh, both of them have lost their main Coordinators they've drifted away from the wordpress community. So that in itself is a big problem There's nobody willing to step up and as I say, it's easy to burn out very easy to burn out Especially if you've been doing it for
[00:36:34] Mark Westguard: years It's just like you say starting any event like that is tremendous amount of work and commitment.
[00:36:41] Nathan Wrigley: yeah Your, uh, Aaron is telling you to be quiet, Tim, basically. Shhh! Uh, and Aaron would go down as far as Dundee. He's just not been there for a while. Is that like a north south divide thing in, uh... In Scotland, Dundee represents the south as you'll go. I
[00:36:59] Mark Westguard: used to live just south of Aberdeen. I used to live on the east coast.
So, uh, there's not too much contention between north and south. It's more about east
[00:37:08] Tim Nash: and west of Scotland. Would you not? Was that too far for you?
[00:37:12] Mark Westguard: Yeah, I mean, I would have gone to Dundee.
[00:37:15] Nathan Wrigley: Oh dear. We've got Anil back. We'll check his audio in a moment. Um, just to say on, on, on a very similar note, I did a podcast episode with, uh, a lovely person called, um, Joe mini, uh, who Cameron knows she's in Australia.
She lives in Perth and it. It's going to come out on the tavern, it's going to come out on Wednesday, but she was talking about how, how much more difficult it is in Australia than it even might be, for example, in the UK, where, you know, we've got this densely populated little island, whereas Australia has more or less, roughly speaking, about a third of the population of the UK spread over something Almost exactly the same size as the, as the lower, uh, 50 states in the U S.
So it's really difficult. If you put on a WordCamp event, you're probably going to have to get on a plane. If you're really lucky, it will be, you know, like a 19 hour drive or something like that. So a really interesting set of, uh, just a real cocktail of problems in the, in. In the, well, the southern hemisphere, but Australia in particular, so we get into that anyway.
So thank you for all your comments and Neil in a somewhat controversial, uh, statement simply pronounces that Glasgow is dead. I presume that you mean the, uh, the WordPress event, not the, not the city as a whole. Um, Edinburgh is still on. Oh, I see. Here's some context. Edinburgh is still online. Ben is looking to go live soon.
Do you know what? This is really interesting. We're getting a real, it seems to be, there's a lot of people in the UK watching this particular episode. There seems to be a lot of things going on. And Tim, you've just schooled us on what may or may not happen. So yeah. Very cool. Uh, on the screen now, I don't know if I showed this earlier.
I can't remember. Here are the, here are the things, the WPCC. Is trying to do at the moment, right? Let's move on. That was a fascinating conversation That is the wpcc website on a very similar note different story, but very similar This is sarah gooding writing in wp tavern. We featured wp tavern an awful lot this week.
Um, and that's because I love it Uh, the article is entitled wordpress community summit travel fund contributes 1, 000 in assistance for attendees. Uh, if you don't know what the W the WordPress community summit is, it's a little event which, uh, apparently used to run much more frequently. I think it was a sort of staple of, of WordCamp US, I think probably, uh, up until 2017, where there would be a little date attached before the WordCamp.
And it was an invite only thing. So it was people who, I guess, for a bunch of different criteria were. Integral to the project. Let's just put it that way. They were invited to, to come along. Uh, but the invite of course, doesn't get you anything other than the right to attend if you can't actually make it because you, you can't afford the ticket or the accommodation or all of the.
Bother bits and pieces, then the invite is all, well, but you're not gonna go, are you? So $48,000, I dunno if that was the amount that was like subscribed at the beginning, but that's the amount that it took in the end. Um, so it was for providing accommodation, it was providing flights, it was all of those kind of things.
And again, Whilst the WPCC is, it feels like that's a, you know, a philanthropic thing, which is being done for the community, but outside the community in a different project, this is a sort of different slant on that. This, this money, uh, is being provided, uh, as travel assistance. Um, and it says it's thanks to a group of sponsors.
So here they are. Automatic, A2 Hosting, Elementor and Weglot. I don't know if that fund includes anybody else, but this time around it's going to support 38 attendees round trips, 31, 000 for 24 people and hotel stay. Sorry, that's for transportation. And then the hotel stays are going to account for 16, 500.
And that's 66 nights for 22 people. So again, like didn't have to be the case. It could have been that you just said, well, you've got an invite. Can you make it or not? Yes, no, no. Okay. Move on. Let's just pick somebody else. It could have been that, but it wasn't. So bravo to those organizations for stepping up.
I hope you get the recognition that you deserve. Um, so again, if anybody wants to jump in on this one, let's try Anil first to see if his microphone's doing, doing the correct duty this time. What do you reckon with this one, Anil? All right. What do you think? Keep going. It's hard to tell.
[00:41:53] Anil Gupta: Well, um, so I really love the initiative and,
[00:41:58] Nathan Wrigley: uh, no, no, I'm so sorry. No. What we're basically is about. Yeah. Try to try turning your video off or thank you, Mark. That's a sensible suggestion. If you go beneath the video of all of us four, there's a little cog wheel. I think it says settings or something. If you go in there, there are options around.
I think if you go to camera, you can change the refresh rate. It looks like you've got a fabulous camera, so it may be consuming all of your bandwidth. I don't know. It's worth a shot either dropping down your refresh rate on the camera or. Um, or just switch your camera off altogether and we'll go with the audio and see what that's like.
Do you want to give that a try?
[00:42:40] Anil Gupta: Shut up and do that and me kill m
[00:42:43] Nathan Wrigley: How is it now? Any better? It's not, really. Uh, keep trying. Say a few words. No. Heh.
[00:42:53] Anil Gupta: Alright. I'll also try to change the, um, microphone and see if
[00:42:56] Nathan Wrigley: anything happens. Yeah, do that. I'm going to put you on mute while you do that and I'll send that same question over to either Mark or Tim.
Uh, yeah, we're talking about this article here, WordPress Community and the fact that these companies have stomped up to get these people there. Very nice gesture.
[00:43:13] Mark Westguard: I mean, this goes back to the second article we were talking about, about 20 years of WordPress, right. And loving the community. And I love to see that, uh, you know, this is, this is the contributions that we're seeing today have not only come from the big corporates, but from anybody in the community, um, offering up any, any amount of assistance to, to people is, is wonderful.
Um, I know I, I like to try and, uh, contribute towards people getting to word word camps. There are so many. valuable people that deserve to be there that can't afford to be there and contributing and trying to give back is what it's all about. I know like MasterWP do their travel funds as well. So anything around this is welcomed.
And I think we should, I think anybody that is a significant player in the WordPress community should definitely look towards giving back as much as they possibly can. Um, I see a lot of small businesses giving back, um, an incredible amount of their share of income back to the community, which is always, always
[00:44:22] Nathan Wrigley: applauded.
Such a weird, I say weird in air quotes, but it's such a weird industry. You know, if you went out into the broader business world and talked about philanthropy and giving back so that other people, my guess is that most people say, no, that's weird. Uh, it's all about shareholders and dividends and making profit and all of that kind of stuff it is It's genuinely pretty.
[00:44:45] Mark Westguard: completely different mindset. Yeah, and um, Yeah, and I I love it in that regard, you know, there are so many contributors to the wordpress project that Um, you know, maybe just work from home and attending a workout, you know Particularly given that there can be so far away from where they live. I mean in the u.
s A flight across the country can cost you an immense amount of money. So having these funds available to them to let them attend and bring value to these events I think is
[00:45:14] Nathan Wrigley: fantastic. I, um, I hope that, uh, I hope that the people who have been in receipt I hope that they, they get to know, uh, you know, where that money has come from.
And, and I kind of, in an ideal world, you'd want there to be some sort of recognition for the companies that have put that sponsorship up. I guess the Tavern have done a job of doing that, but, uh, yeah. Bravo to add?
[00:45:40] Tim Nash: Not really, though, when we were talking, I was just reminded of a time where I had a conversation with an accountant about sponsoring a WordCamp many, many years ago. And he asked whether it was some sort of tax evasion scam, which
[00:45:55] Nathan Wrigley: that's how alien it was.
[00:45:57] Tim Nash: It was like, well, because money was going off in one direction and then the sponsorship was being provided by a different firm in inverted commas, because that was how.
WordCamps were run back then and yes this idea that he seriously he was just there going is this some sort of tax evasion? I don't understand It's like we're just sponsoring an event.
[00:46:19] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah. Yeah, that's that's fascinating. Um Cameron makes the point that you just made mark about the size of The US. I guess it would be the same in Australia.
Uh, Cameron's closest meetup. This is going back to the story for a moment. He goes a hundred kilometers away. Uh, there's never been a, been a WordCamp, uh, away from the East coast. So that's another two or three hours flight. So if you want to run one in Perth, which Joe Mini, uh, I think would love to happen because she's based in Perth.
Um, but my understanding is Perth, Perth is the most isolated capital city. It's not the capital city of the whole country, but it's the capital city of the state. It's the most isolated capital city on the planet. Um, yeah, it's further away from any other capital city than any other. If you draw a circle around it, I think, I think it's closer to Jakarta in Indonesia than it is to Um, Canberra, I could be wrong about that, but I think that's the case.
Anyway, there's my geographical snippet for the day. It's
[00:47:16] Mark Westguard: your secondary education coming up.
[00:47:17] Nathan Wrigley: That's right. Uh, Andrew Palmer, being an organizer of any Wordpress event opens you up to criticism. So that would be another reason for lack of organizers, but you can't please everyone, unfortunately. Interesting.
Andrew raises a good point. All the main sponsors give massive amounts in global sponsorship. There you go. Bali is closer to Perth than I am to, than I am near Adelaide. Yeah, you see, thanks Mr. Green, my geography teacher back in year, whatever it was called back then. I did in fact learn something. We have a private chat facility in this conversation and Anil has dropped into the saying, sorry about the mic issue.
He's just going to listen. So we'll keep him there. Uh, but he's not going to be contributing anymore, but we'll keep him there anyway, just, uh, just as a memorial to the fact that it never worked out. And he'll just so that, you know, please do, uh, come back. Uh, you know, when the, when the call has ended, we'll fetch you back onto the screen and we can have a chat and see if we can iron out what the problems were.
But, uh, yeah, that's one last comment. Uh, we were talking about sponsorships. Andrew carries on and says, for example, Super admin is 75, 000 for WordCamp US. Boy. That's a fair amount of money. Alrighty, let us move on. Okay, so this is another interesting topic. Um, this is a podcast episode that I did with a chap called Jonathan Wold.
He's been on the Tavern podcast a couple of times, but he's got a new initiative. Well, it's not new to him, but it was new to me, called Guildenberg, which is kind of a nice concoction of two words. Guild and Unberg, no, uh, and Gutenberg, and he's got this idea. Which he's trying to float at the moment of, and it's based loosely upon the European idea of a guild.
I know Andrew Palmer is going to have something to say about this. Cause he left a comment on the WP tavern post, um, a guild in the European sense of the word, this medieval guild was a bunch of people who would get together in a particular trade or a particular geographical location, and it was kind of like, it was a way of.
Trying to make it so that you all work together. So it could be like the exclusionary principle where we're all the carpenters in this area and nobody who's not in our guild can do any kind of carpentry work, otherwise you're going to find yourself in trouble. Or it could be a geographical guild where, you know, industries, all the industries in a certain geographical area line up, and essentially it's a way of promoting the things for guild members.
So if you're a guild member, you get preferential. Treatment. And, uh, Jonathan's got this idea of creating a guild, AKA Guildenberg in the WordPress space, uh, as a way of promoting plugins in particular, who find it hard to get their voice heard. Now I can, I'm sure you can sympathize, especially Mark being a product owner.
I bet at the beginning, when you launched WS form, it was like shouting into the void. I'm sure there was, you know, whole weeks that went by where you said, not a. Nobody's nobody's listening. I've got this great thing. I've built it. Well, it turns out that that that really is the case across the WordPress ecosystem.
It's so big now, and it's got such a big target painted on its back. But lots and lots of people enter the plug in marketplace and The, but they don't have that marketing thing. They don't have the money to put into marketing. They don't have the mouse to do it. They're a brilliant coder. They might not want to appear on podcasts.
They're not good at making copies. So they've got this great thing, but they don't know what to do with it. So that's Jonathan's idea. Join the guild, contribute to the guild, pay a fee towards the guild. And then the guild in return will push your products to the audience out there. So my guess is that this will be.
uh reasonably controversial. One of the things that happened with guilds is that they, they sometimes became a bit of a clique. And I, my understanding at least anyway, is that some of them, you know, that the reason that we really don't have them anymore is because they kind of outgrew or society outgrew the need for them in a way.
So that's the, the sort of. The counter argument would be, well, what if it's just a cabal of people who, you know, I'm the SEO guy, nobody else who's got an SEO plugin can get in. Jonathan's thought about all these things, but I'm just going to throw it out there. Mark, Tim, commentators out there on the internet.
What do you think about this? Interesting.
[00:51:42] Mark Westguard: You know, I, I used to run a business in London called London Launch, and it was an online directory of events businesses. Uh, kind of similar to this. Everyone paid a membership fee and we would then use that as a pot of money to then promote those businesses. And it was, it was successful.
But what I, what I found with it was that there were certainly some businesses within that membership that worked better for us in terms of being able to promote them. There was always a little group of people that no matter what we did, it just seemed to work better. It tended to be, you know, we worked with venues and AV companies and people like that.
And the venues always seemed to work really well and people that were doing catering and stuff like that didn't really get much exposure. Um, so, yeah, I wonder if this would have similar problems about it. Um, being a plugin developer when I first came into the WordPress space, as you said, Nathan, it's, uh, there's no, single place that you can go to, to shout about what you've done.
Um, the WordPress community is very fragmented. There's lots of little groups of, of interest groups and stuff like that. Uh, and it takes a long time, a lot of work to, to get your name out there. Uh, there's, what, 50, 000 plus plugins in that, in that repo? 60. 60, 000 now? Uh, yeah, when I, when I did it, there was 50, 000, so it's grown significantly.
And it's, it's a challenge getting your voice heard because there's, again, we've got that group of plugins that have been out there. Since the beginning and those are the ones that get the exposure because they've got the more, you know, the more downloads and things like that So I think anything to Help developers plug in developers or theme developers.
I'm not sure if this extends to that Um, to, to give them exposure. I'm all about, um, uh, I'm interested to see how it goes and whether it's gonna, you know, do what it says on, on, on, on the tin. Um, I'm interested to see, you know, what the charge for doing that would be as well, because. Jonathan's going to have the same trouble that I had on day one.
He's obviously got a much bigger audience than I had when I started. He's been in the business for a long time. And he's got the reputation to go out there and talk about it. But I wonder how much of a challenge it's going to be for him to get that exposure that these companies are going to expect.
That was another challenge for us as well. We were charging a monthly fee for marketing these companies. And if we didn't show results, they fell out of the platform. Uh, and again, by, you know, depending on the type of business that you were, the type of plugin that you were kind of dictated how successful that was, that was going to be.
So I wonder whether Jonathan will hit those, those same walls, but I wish, I wish him luck with it.
[00:54:34] Nathan Wrigley: I think Andrew Palmer, he made a comment in the WP Tavern post. So if you want to read what he said, he, he's, he's, he's put some, uh, well thought through objections to the idea. And he said he was not going to comment more, but then he commented anyway.
Uh, he said, okay, one more thing. Uh, Jonathan will help you do it for 10, 000 currently. I think 10 K means 10, 000, uh, plus a commission of 25% of end deal. And it's basically going to become a marketplace. So yeah, maybe this would be one of the, one of the things that people would, uh, rebel against. Uh, Jonathan Wold, uh, did reply to, uh, Andrew's, uh, comment, which you can read on the Tavern website.
But yeah, I guess that's the thing. We already have a marketplace. Uh, we have the repo, um, but it's very, very difficult, I think, to make the repo work for you. If you are undiscovered brand new, you need to get the. You need to get the plugin up and running right now, but you've gotta wait for the plugin review team, and that's whole 60 days and what have you.
So yeah, sorry, Tim, and I guess WordPress. Sorry, sorry. You go, mark, and then we'll flip to Tim. Yeah,
[00:55:38] Mark Westguard: I, I, I, you know, I guess wordpress.com are doing that in a way with their own plugin directory that, that they're putting together. Um, And that's been progressing quite slowly. So I think they're being quite cautious about how they do that and still trying to work out how that's going to work, um, on wordpress.
com. So I'm interested to see where that goes as well. Sorry Tim. Now,
[00:56:00] Nathan Wrigley: your go. Um,
[00:56:01] Tim Nash: I would say this feels very Catch 22 because for it to work for him, he needs enough people to be in the guild for them to work together. Otherwise, it's just him being a marketing person doing some marketing for you and there is a finite amount of him.
So he can only do that for X number of plugins before he dilutes. Um, so presumably the goal is that they all somehow collaboratively work together and become a bigger thing. That's right. And then they, that you joined the guild to get that bigger presence, but if it doesn't have a big presence, why would you join?
And so he's going to have to rely more and more on selling other things to tempt you in. before you've reached the goal of this big presence, and there will become this barrier point where he can't do excellent, he'll run out of hours in the day, he'll run out of people to support, and then it has to have reached that critical mass by that point, or it will implode and fail.
Um, it also feels like something that's been done many many times before we've just given it different names I mean ultimately you could say this is sounds not dissimilar to what post status did when they created their memberships system with um, you could you know, you can Become a a company member.
Well, I don't know quite how they describe it but they you you can become an organization via through post membership and then They promote you on their newsletters and through bits and pieces. Um, there have been other projects that have failed previously to this. Um, I just can't see it working as a single person.
And I'll be honest when the dimension of 10, 000 came up, my brain just went, yeah, because plugging developers are well known for having large amounts of startup cash. That's, that's, that's where they start off in life with vast quantities of startup cash, these small solo developers. Um, I can just try and imagine that conversation as you're there going, So, um, what did you do, honey?
Oh, today I just paid 10, 000 to this random person on the internet. He's going to make me a star.
[00:58:12] Nathan Wrigley: Interesting, interesting analogy. There's a comment there on the screen from Andrew Palmer. Saying he knew he liked Mr. Nash. Uh, obviously sort of similar sentiment there. Uh, what I would say is, uh, if you're curious about this in any way, shape or form, obviously over a 40 minute podcast episode, uh, Jonathan is able to explain a lot of the detail.
I, I tried to. Provide some of the sort of counter arguments. Um, and so have a listen. Uh, if you're not into listening to this kind of thing, there is a transcript so you can read the entire thing. It's all there for your delectation. So anyway, that's a project. Jonathan's trying to launch Gildenberg. Keep your eyes peeled.
Uh, let's go to this in just a moment. I'm just curious. I don't really know, Max, if you're listening to something. Perhaps a little bit further back in the, in the timeline of this podcast, because he said, sadly, a lot is happening in Facebook groups. Can any of you think what he might've been, can you think of something that we've dealt with in the last hour or so that might've, maybe he's talking about community,
[00:59:13] Tim Nash: uh,
[00:59:14] Nathan Wrigley: okay.
Yeah, maybe the work camps. Max, we're not ignoring your comments is what I'm saying. We're just, I don't know that it's sort of in line with what we're talking about now. So if you click refresh and get to where we are, that might make the, uh, the commenting a little bit easier. Andrew, one final thing. I think the best way forward is simply to build advocates.
That's what Mark did because he has an awesome
[00:59:40] Mark Westguard: the post, Mr. Palmer. Yeah. I was going to say just on the back of what Tim was saying about the 10, 000. Um, it is a lot of money. Uh, the vast majority of plugin developers in the repo aren't existing big companies with big budgets. I certainly wasn't. Um, I did try putting money into some marketing stuff, but quite honestly, the best success I've had is by being active in the community, um, developing advocates with people that.
Believe you've got a good product and like to talk about it. Uh, if I go out there with an ad somewhere and I say, Hey, buy my product. Generally doesn't work. Um, it's much better to make noise within the community that you love and. Be proactive in it and help people out and give back
[01:00:26] Nathan Wrigley: Um, so this is an interesting sort of counterpoint.
So this is in our private chat So anil's there on the screen, but he's not on the screen if you know what I mean He's put a little message in the private chat and he said I worked with jonathan Uh for one of my products And as a newcomer to product space The advice and value offered by Gildenberg and Jonathan proved valuable to me.
Uh, he went on to say, oh, sorry, to me and my business. And it's got an ellipsis, but there's more I'll quickly read it. I think it's a good idea for tech founders who need support and assistance with distribution and strategy. So there's somebody, Anil, who, for whom this has worked, but obviously there's, there's sort of different discussions here.
Let's see how this goes.
[01:01:12] Mark Westguard: Well, Jonathan. It is a very valuable resource if you can get with him one to one. He's so well connected and, um, if you're lucky enough to, to get some one on one business advice with him, which I've had, you know, through post datas, um, it's certainly valuable.
[01:01:29] Nathan Wrigley: Hokely dokely. Thank you very much.
Right, let's move on. Uh, Crocker Blocks. So this is a Ukrainian based company. They make Plugins for WordPress, they are having an online event. It's on the 28th of September to the 30th, by the way. That's just shortly after the page builder summit, which if you feel like sponsoring it, you can go to page builder summit.com.
sponsors. Uh, but this is shortly after that. So, you know, there's no conflict there. Um, they're running an AI web agency summit. I love these kind of things, so it's got a real defined. Little niche. It's not just about, you know, agencies and the agency space and building websites in general. Um, and if you go to the tavern, you can see this piece all about it.
It's going to be 24, uh, sorry, 28th to the 30th of September. As I said, there are 10 speakers spread over. Uh, I think it's a couple of days, three days. There we go. And you can find more about it on the Crocker Block website. Um, and you can register to join there. The speakers. Uh, listed here. Remcus de Vries, a common, a common, uh, participant of this show.
He's going to be joining as well as a bunch of others. And I believe Mr. Westgard that you are also going to be on a panel in this event.
[01:02:43] Mark Westguard: Yes, I am talking about AI and, uh, AI products and how we have developed
[01:02:49] Nathan Wrigley: those. Yeah. Okay. There you go. Thank you very much. Do, do, do, do, do. Okay. Anything with that Tim, or should we just move on?
Nice. Okay. Shaking his head. Uh, all right. So it turns out, I didn't actually know this, but it turns out that the, the wordpress. org support system, if a, if a comment has reached a six month benign period, you know, it's gone into dormancy. And what that means is not that the post was published six months ago.
It means that the last comment was six months ago. So, you know, a comment could, in theory. Keep going indefinitely if every couple of months somebody logs in and writes another comment, but after six months of no activity That thread is is automatically, uh closed Obviously that means that nobody can comment on that thread and there's been a little bit of a discussion this week About whether or not that's in fact a good idea.
Would it not be better to have either? Um, comment threads that are open indefinitely. Um, some counterpoint to that was, well, they just get filled with spam. Um, after a period of time, the robots come in and you'll just literally get thousands and thousands of spam posts. Or, or even if it was just a few, it's still horrible to read.
And if you genuinely wanted to add something, you'd have to get... Through all that spam before you got your opportunity. So another option might be, what about the idea of maintainers of that thread? If you know what I mean, I don't know exactly what the right word is. What about if people could bring it back out of dormancy or if somebody creating, uh, a comment could bring it back out of dormancy and then it could kind of go back into a dark.
I don't really know. There's all sorts of different things. I know for my part, I don't, I haven't really used the wordpress. org. Support forums and this been a frustration to me, but browsing around on the internet, more generally, it does kind of annoy me when I'm, when I'm aligned with a product and I go to their support forum and I see that the perfect thread.
Is now closed to me. So I basically have to revive it and write the same thing again. So I dunno, I'm with Matt Mullenweg cause he made a little comment here. He said, let's move away from auto closing to just having a warning that you're replying to an old thread. So that's quite an ingenious way of doing it.
Just post a warning. This thread hasn't been touched for eight months. It's potentially gone cold. But you can comment if you like. I don't know. What do you guys think?
[01:05:12] Tim Nash: I think that there are probably slightly more, uh, technical nuances than that. Uh, the forum is still using BP Press and it is very old and, uh, it is maintained by a group of people who are pushing what it was designed to do to the absolute limits.
I suspect that there are technical reasons. that are pretty, uh, around, if you close it, it just makes life a lot easier. Even just allowing the extra spam might be enough to completely wreck the forums. So I, the one thing about these is this is a, um, something that the support team will do in their weekly meetings is talk about, um, and I'm sure that that discussion will be.
Interesting. And I'm sure the meta team will come in and give some, uh, can we, can we actually do this? Um, because yeah, when it comes to the WordPress. org forums, uh, it's lovely that we go, Oh, we, I'd really like this feature, but the practicality of it is that it is a bit fragile and implementing new stuff, or even just doing something that seems really benign, like changing, taking six months off will, could result in a lot of headaches for some very unpaid volunteers.
Who really would like to just keep things running and that's that.
[01:06:33] Nathan Wrigley: That's interesting. So I won't press you on the point, but you're basically highlighting that there may be technical reasons. Why this is, is not as, not as in reach as it might seem. Yeah. Okay. That's fascinating. Okay. Thank you. Oh, that's an interesting angle.
One that didn't get raised. I don't believe in the, in the post. So, ah, Tim to the rescue, maybe giving us what we need to know. Mark, anything on this? I don't know if you get yourself involved in any of these support forums or whether you do your, you do it all on your own. Um,
[01:07:00] Mark Westguard: yeah, I mean, we, we have our own support forum, obviously, cause we have a light edition of our plugin.
Um, so we, we deal with that. Um, also the, I believe, and I might be wrong on this, Tim, but the, uh, plug in reviews is done through a similar system. And, um, yeah, I mean, if technically if allowed, I'm all about just leaving. Um, but, uh, if that's not possible, then yeah, fine. Leave it, leave it to the six months, but I, you know, obviously the way I'd like to see it is keep it open, but if there's a reason for closing that down, maybe there's been a heated debate and it's time to shut it down.
We don't want to listen to that anymore. Then yeah, close it down. I've actually had one of my reviews shut down as well. I had, uh. A very, uh, I don't want to say angry, but Nut nut case
[01:07:53] Nathan Wrigley: that was that was way better
[01:07:58] Mark Westguard: Yeah, basically threatening me and the Review team very kindly shut it down. Um, so having the ability to do that is is obviously a must um, but yeah, I mean I, I agree with a point that Cameron made about spam being a terrible argument. Um, it's, you know, you're going to get spam at any time with these things.
Obviously, the older it is, the more likely it's going to be picked up by bots and things like that. But, uh, I think WordPress does a pretty good job of keeping spam out of the... Reviews and support tickets as far as I've seen
[01:08:32] Nathan Wrigley: well mark It is it is at this point that I would like to publicly apologize for that thread It was you I i'm so sorry, uh, it got a little bit out of hand Uh, you know, I mean after all why can't a plugin that does forms?
Why can't it make my tv work better? Honestly, i'm working
[01:08:53] Mark Westguard: on it I'm working on the integration with your Samsung.
[01:08:57] Nathan Wrigley: Thank you very much. Uh, Elliot, I think he's just giggling at that little exchange. Thank you. Yeah, exactly. Not angry, just a not case. That's gotta be, I'm writing that down as
[01:09:07] Mark Westguard: the title. There you Not
[01:09:09] Nathan Wrigley: angry, just, hold on, let me just scribble that down.
What is it? What did you say? Not angry? Not angry, just a not case. Okay, right. Not case. Got it. Perfect. That's unless somebody says something significantly funnier than that before the end, that's going to be the episode of today.
You have to have the, uh, you have to have the video. Mark's just held up. Well, he's obviously just printed the most basic of fonts. It says sponsor the page builder summit or something equivalent to that. Mark, actually. I do get a bit weary of looking at your face. Is there any chance that you
[01:09:50] Mark Westguard: could just
[01:09:51] Nathan Wrigley: keep Thank you, yeah, I
[01:09:54] Mark Westguard: could put your face up, you know, I
[01:09:55] Nathan Wrigley: can yeah He's got it in a box somewhere.
Oh, that's brilliant Uh angry not case tightly the episode. Yes. Cameron. You've hit the nail on the head. Anyway, okay moving on to some acquisition news It Honestly, rewind the clock like two years. This is all we talked about was acquisitions. It seems like the boiler has gone off a little bit there, uh, but we have another one.
This is to say that group one, who I actually didn't know, uh, used to have a different name. Tim told me that was, it was it one and one hosting Tim. It used to be that, but they've renamed themselves. Group dot one or group one, uh, styling themselves as a European cloud hosting and digital marketing services provider.
They've, uh, they've taken control of three plugins, all of whom I've heard of, and usually when there's a whole bunch of plugins acquired, I've heard of a few of them, but these are. Some of them pretty big, 11 million installs in total backup. Sorry, back WP up, add, minimize and search and replace. They've been rolled into the product offering, um, of this company.
Um, they've taken them off the hands of. Impsyde. I N P S Y D E. And they're going to be joining the suite of plugins which they currently already own. And you've definitely heard of some of these. WP Rocket, uh, Imagify, and RankMath SEO. Um, they've been sold so that the company in question, um, inside can concentrate on their core competencies.
They say they can work more with their clients like PayPal, Payoneer and Molly, obviously into the whole payment gateway thing, curiously, right at the bottom, Sarah Gooding, when she wrote this piece for WP Tavern, uh, obviously. Probably reached out to them and said that, uh, Simon Kraft, who is a representative for them, uh, was unable to comment on whether the commercial versions of the acquired plugins would be subject to any pricing changes.
That is a typical, very normally we hear, we hear the usual boilerplate, which is nothing will change. Everything's going to stay the same. Existing customers won't have price increases. So that's quite an interesting departure from that usual thing. I mean, obviously the absence of saying it doesn't imply it.
But it kind of does a bit as well. So let's see. Let's see what happens. Uh, mark tim I don't know if there's anything on that. If not, we'll just Carry on. I
[01:12:19] Mark Westguard: hope they don't mess around with existing Subscriptions, that's all I
[01:12:22] Nathan Wrigley: can say. Are you a subscriber to any of them? Do you i'm not
[01:12:25] Mark Westguard: no, but it usually ends in tears um when when that when that happens, so um, I hope that they just keep that stable and Keep doing what they're doing
[01:12:38] Tim Nash: Um, I mean, it just continues the trend of hosting companies buying, uh, WordPress products.
I mean, at this stage, uh, it's, it's who isn't owned by a hosting company, even if they keep them as like little subsidiary companies. Um, I'm pretty sure Mark's bought. It really is owned by GoDaddy and he's just hasn't, I don't know, it will come. He will be sold off to some hosting companies
[01:13:04] Nathan Wrigley: at some point.
I honestly, Tim, I think that's, I think that's very, very negative of you. Uh, the WP Broadcast is sponsored this week by GoDaddy Pro.
Yeah, you know, they've been great to us. Uh, I'll just, I just thought that was worth slotting in there. That was brilliant. Okay, so there that they have been bought. Let's see what comes of that. Okay, this is right up your street, Tim. We've got 15 minutes left. We've in potential. Actually, do you know what?
Just before we come to this one, because this could keep us going for a little while, I'll just throw a few quick ones out there in rapid succession. Here's the first one. Um, Anne McCarthy. Who everybody knows and more or less, everybody thinks is great. Uh, she has written a post introducing wordpress. org forward slash blocks.
There's obviously a bit of an endeavor to make the public understand what blocks do. And to that end, a page has been thrown up. It is that URL wordpress. org forward slash blocks. Here's what it looks like. And it's kind of like a one Oh one. It's very, very simple. You could, you could consume the whole thing in about a minute.
Uh, but I, I feel it's just about making people understand what they are, because honestly, I think if you're a total novice to WordPress, this whole paradigm of blocks and all of that is a little bit confusing. It's, you know, it can be a bit janky. So this page has been put together, but typically in the WordPress way, this isn't the fixed end product.
Uh, and at the bottom is a great pains to say. Can we have some, can we have some thoughts on what you think of this page? Does it, for example, uh, is it compelling enough? Does it keep, does it keep confusion to a minimum? What visuals would better communicate what blocks can do? What additional resources are needed to be created?
Um, and where else should the page be linked from to improve discoverability? So if you are really an advocate for blocks and you want them to become. Much more well understood then go and check that out. Uh, a certain Mark West guard is doing a bit of a deal at the moment. He's got this product called WS form.
We may have mentioned it. I don't know. Um, and it's a form plugin for WordPress and he's offering 30% off cause he's kind cause he's a nice man. Um, and from. Now, until the 27th of August, 2021. There's the catch. It was two, no, 2023. Um, I'm glad I changed the date. You get a 30% off the, the core product, uh, or indeed any of the product.
I believe WC 30. Is the coupon code you can use there. And just as a bit of a joke, if that coupon code did happen to run out, you can always head over to the WPBills deals page and you can get 20% off. Uh, so, you know, if you fancy giving Mark an extra 10%. There you go. That's how you're going to do
[01:15:58] Mark Westguard: it.
Coupons cannot be combined.
[01:15:59] Nathan Wrigley: That's right, coupons cannot. Yeah, 50% off. Great. Um, this one is just to say that there's nothing on this page to show it but Lifter LMS has got a 50% reduction at the moment. In the newsletter tomorrow I will, uh, I will drop the code. You can probably find it in a newsletter or so.
I just can't access it at the moment because all my screens are all messed up. But there is a coupon code out there. When this article is published in the morning, tomorrow morning, it will be in there. It's something like Lifter 50. They're not keeping it secret or anything, but 50% off, uh, their plans. So that's kind of nice.
And we'll just drop this one in, which has nothing to do with WordPress, but totally spooky before we get to the, the final security article. Uh, the Guardian have written to say that scientists, uh, have been able to reconstruct from people's thoughts, the, the Pink Floyd song, The Wall. Now, this is just spooky.
So they basically trained a bunch of people and examined what their brains did when they listened to a bunch of songs. And it turns out music is the perfect thing for this because it's got rhythm, it's got, you know, things happening in time, there's cadence to it, and there's a whole, you know, harmony and all of that kind of stuff.
And apparently these things, if you're a brain expert, they display in certain ways under these scans. Anyway, turns out they can reverse engineer... Not, not like just that this is the song, but they can actually pinpoint the moment when they're, when they're thinking the lyrics. And, what the heck? I mean, we're going to be in an era fairly soon where you'll, you know, you just go out on a date or something, and just be like, putting a hat on somebody and saying, right, let's see what they actually...
Actually think about me or something like that. Anyway, I just think this is science at its most extreme thought. That was worth mentioning. Don't know if any of you want to mention anything about that before I go back to security.
[01:17:57] Tim Nash: Just think about the, when you can put that hat on and then just reprogram.
Uh, it's quite apt. That it's, uh, an ever breaking the wall, yeah, yeah, might be a case of we don't need no education because
[01:18:13] Nathan Wrigley: That's good and also like why that song there must be something about that song which the scientists presumably thought this song It's super predictable. I'm guessing, you know, it's got that real slow introduction where not much happens and then those, the voices come in in a certain way and all of that kind of stuff.
So yeah, anyway, you, the beginnings of reverse engineering thought. Uh, have now started and, uh, obviously, you know, if you, if you are going to be thinking about the a brick in the wall by Pink Floyd, that's no longer a secret. Everything else is fine, but that song in particular, you're screwed. Don't ever think about it.
Uh, so, okay, back to the, the question in hand. This seems to have ruffled a few feathers. By the way, look at that lovely, tasty little banner at the bottom of that page. Something to do with sponsoring the page builder summit. Mark, you've got a piece of cake. Um, so the. I released a podca there it is, look at that, beautiful, beautifully done.
I, uh, released a podcast episode with a chap called Calvin Alken from, uh, a company called Sneeko, S N I C C O. They're a security. Security company. And this is weird. We've never done this before because this is such a hot button topic. What I decided to do is record four people. Um, and the, the rules of engagement were as follows.
I'm going to record all four of you. None of you are going to get to listen to what anybody else has said. I'm going to publish those episodes in a random order. Uh, just essentially so that everybody can have their fair say, fair say in isolation so that, you know, you can't listen to what somebody said and then you get to reply, but they don't because their audio went out.
Anyway, randomly, Calvin's came out first. And in this episode, he was basically bringing into question whether WordPress Security malware scanners in particular, not the whole industry, but malware scanners and firewalls and things like that in particular had any use whatsoever. His contention really is that the way that they, that they have been built and he points out certain plugins in particular, um, and the nature of SQL attacks in other.
Plugins to leverage the problem, um, mean that if effectively a half decent hacker will be able to That firewall, null that malware scanning to the point where it's absolutely useless, loose, useless. And that is his contention. They are useless. Akshat Chowdhury from Malcare, the plugin in question. They get their episode, write a reply.
It will be coming in a random order at some point soon. But I did want to know what. What Tim thought we touched on this at some point in the future, but Tim, honestly, we know that you've got security chops. What's your thoughts? That's it. That's just a big sign.
[01:20:56] Tim Nash: I mean, that's just a big site. About eight years ago.
No. About eight years ago. I did some research and I looked at sites that were hacked across the board I worked for a hosting company at the time and I looked at all the sites that we'd been hacked and I looked to see How many of them had a security plugin installed? and I then looked at the various ways they've been hacked and the Statistics at the end of the day was you were as likely to be hacked if you had a security plugin installed as if you were Sometimes how you were hacked was different But ultimately, having a security plugin by itself did absolutely nothing.
That's because most people didn't understand how the plugins they were using work. The plugin authors made claims that were stupidest at best. And generally, people got a humongous false sense of security. That I've installed the plugin. My job is. done. Do malware scanners have a place? Yes. Are they better?
Are WordPress plugins the best place to do a malware scan? Probably not, but the average person cannot set up a malware scanner on their hosting solution because they do not have the level of privileges and access to be able to do it. That's why you get good hosting, um, who will do all this for you. So a good host should know about your malware on your site well before you do, and well before your plugins can do it.
But these plugins aren't aimed at places that have good hosting, they're aimed at Joe, who just set up on the cheapest hosting they could. They're running their... Their website. They know nothing about any of this. Is that better than nothing? Yes. Does it help them sometimes? Yes. Can it be bypassed?
Absolutely. Is it bypassed? Yes. There are active vulnerabilities and active attacks in the wild that are disabling Your word fences, your malware, all these plugins that they've got ways to come around them. I was looking at a site literally just Two days ago, where it's like, that's interesting when you go and do a day PCI command, you can see that the WAF rules for word fence just aren't loading.
And it's coming up with errors. And it's like, okay, well, that's something something is stopping the rules being updated. Why would something want to stop the rules being updated? I want to go and have a look. So these things are exploited in the wild. Um, my bigger issue with WordPress security plugins has always been with.
that the benefits to them are only benefits in a very small niche and they're sold on a massive scale. Um, I would much rather people focus their time on choosing the, choosing plugins very carefully, keeping their sites up to date and keeping their users credentials secure. If you, if you only have to do two things, setting your site to auto update plugins and making sure that your, your plugins stay up to date.
will do you more good than installing a dozen security plugins. And I've been there. I've seen the sites where I've gone, you've not got one, you've not got two, you have five security plugins. They're all the same thing. Guess what? Your site doesn't move. It is slow. Um, so yeah, I mean, they, are they useful in very certain circumstances?
Of course they are. Would I tell someone to uninstall their security plugin? Probably not. But there have been times that I've certainly have. Do I think that they are a load of garbage?
[01:24:48] Nathan Wrigley: No
[01:24:50] Tim Nash: With lots of asterisks, and let's have a longer proper debate about it. Uh, do I think the marketing is a load of garbage? Yes. Do I think that the plugins could do a hell of a lot better job at educating people as to what they actually can do versus saying we will secure your site through our bulletproof security.
Our marketing is 100% effective. Um, all of these things, if we're going to get anywhere forward, we have to improve the education and people who have to improve the education. A lot of that is through the security plugins. They, they need to do better job explaining when they are good at things and when they are not.
Um, I watched the whole, uh, article was about, Hey, these are a load of shit you should try using. Oh. Way of doing things and then i've seen the responses backwards and the reality is of course that these are two groups of people who are Having a marketing war. They're not talking about security. They're not talking about improving your your security posture They're trying to sell their products and they're using adversarial ways between the pair of them to do so which is sad because There could have been a proper conversation And we could we could all be collectively saying As a community, we want everybody to stay safe and have a better security posture.
[01:26:15] Nathan Wrigley: Yeah, that was kind of my endeavor in putting these four episodes together and laying some ground rules, which I've never done so that nobody could tread on anybody else's toes. So we'll see how that works out in the round. But really interesting thoughts there. Thank you. Uh for that tim, yeah, absolutely fascinating.
Yeah, really good Mark, have you got anything to add to that? We are slowly. Well, we are basically at time So if you do,
[01:26:38] Mark Westguard: yeah, I mean just very quickly I think like tim says it a lot of the time it's down to people not understanding how to secure their sites Um, a lot of people just building wordpress sites.
They're not Technically inclined to understand security. Um, I think these plugins, you know, when they're scanning for malware, when you're doing that and a problem comes up, it's too late, uh, you've already got the malware on your server. I'm all about putting security before it even hits the server. You know, so looking at products such as.
Cloudflare, for example, and things like that. Um, but yeah, I agree with what Tim was saying.
[01:27:15] Nathan Wrigley: Uh, Cameron, last little comment. Cameron says, if you have an SQL injection vulnerability on your site, you have bigger problems than your security plugin being bypassed. It's a good point. Um, I've just got to ask, just before we end, just a moment ago, whilst Tim was talking, I saw Mark scrunch up a piece of paper and throw it behind him.
Now, I, I can only hope. I mean, let's pray, shall we, that it wasn't, it, it wasn't the all important Page Builder Summit sponsorship piece of paper, was it? Uh, it was not. No, I... Oh, darn. I was
[01:27:49] Mark Westguard: really hoping... I have a dog behind me snoring. I was really
[01:27:51] Nathan Wrigley: hoping you'd have to unscrew it.
[01:27:54] Mark Westguard: I have a dog behind me
[01:27:55] Nathan Wrigley: snoring and I was trying to work it out.
I can't hear anything. You've got a really good mic set up if that's the case. Hey, I'm glad you can't hear the drone. Yeah, yeah, no. Not at all. Um, so I'd like to personally thank Mark Westgard, Anil Gupta, despite the technical gremlins. Hopefully he'll come back and we'll get that all working. And of course, Tim Nash.
It's that humiliating moment. Bye. Uh, fellas where you've got to raise your hands and give us a cheesy grin and, uh, and we'll have Anil as a circle, uh, as I said to you at the top, there's kind of some weird gremlin in this platform where I press end broadcast and it just seems to, for some reason, deliver a weird.
thing, but hopefully it will give us the right little outro. I'll be back in the studio this time next week. Hopefully I might be taking a week off. I haven't quite decided yet, but, uh, anyway, we'll be back soon, um, on a channel near you. Thanks. And we'll see you soon. Take it easy guys.
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