Issue #9
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This week in WordPress

A new chapter at Post Status

"I’m so excited to be able to step alongside @corymiller303 in this journey," tweets Brian Krogsgard, linking to his big news: Introducing a new chapter, with Cory Miller as Post Status partner. Cory Miller has bought half of the business and is now a co-owner and partner of Post Status. He’ll be working with Brian in the day-to-day management of Post Status, as well as writing and community engagement.

After 10 years running iThemes, Cory sold the business to Liquid Web in January 2018. He’s been working on a few projects since, and now Post Status will be where he dedicates most of his time. "I love being a part of a community and super excited to be supporting the great one @Krogsgard has built at @post_status," tweets Cory.

"There is so much potential in the WordPress community, and Post Status plays an important role through news, community, and professional development. We are going to continue to do that, and we are also going to make changes that we think will benefit the community as a whole and Post Status Club Members in particular," writes Brian.

There’s a lot to look forward to

We start with a round-up of What to Watch for in WordPress in 2020, because as Allie Nimmons from Impress writes, "There’s a lot to look forward to in 2020 in the WordPress world." The Impress team talked to developers, Automatticians, bloggers, and WordPress community members for the post, which covers what’s coming up in core releases, WordPress events and conferences, and what some WordPress companies and people are working on this year.

Copywriter Allison Smith comments, "Great to see the WordPress community flourishing as we enter a new decade – I’m especially excited about the trend of virtual and online conferences, and GoDaddy’s Makers of the Web initiative."
If you’re wondering what Makers of the Web is, it’s a community initiative GoDaddy started during WordCamp US. Content and community wrangler Andy McIlwain explains,
"The #MakersOfTheWeb are people who build sites for others. You don't need to be a coder, you don't need to do it full time, and you don't need to use a specific tool or platform." On the GoDaddy blog, he further explains that starting in 2020, the initiative will support and promote local community groups, sponsor local groups to help cover their expenses (like venue bookings and food), and lead by example with a new series of local groups for Makers Of The Web.

WordPress 5.4 roadmap

Work on WordPress 5.4 is due to start this week, with an initial beta scheduled for 11 February, the first release candidate on 3 March, and a general release on 31 March, as SiteGround WordPress Community Manager Francesca Marano writes in WordPress 5.4 Planning Roundup for the Make WordPress Core blog.

The main goal for 2020 is full site editing via Gutenberg. But for 5.4, the priorities are creating a block for navigation menus and updating Gutenberg to the latest release version. Matt Mullenweg will continue his role as release lead, but there are other lead roles that still need filling.

WordPress leaders nominated for CMX Awards

"@andmiddleton and I were nominated for this cool thing. Voting closes Jan 22 if you have a few moments to spare!," tweets WordPress Executive Director Josepha Haden. She links to Francesca Marano's news on the WordPress.org blog, WordPress Leaders Nominated for CMX Awards. Josepha has been nominated for Community Professional of the Year in the inaugural awards, while Andrea Middleton, a community organiser, is up for Community Professional of the Year.

CMX is one of the world’s largest professional organizations dedicated to community builders. The inaugural awards celebrate the achievements of the best in the community industry. Voting is now open on the CMX website.

Can the block directory and business interests coexist?

WordPress.org is not an official marketplace for plugins and themes. Yet, it’s a huge source of income for many developers and companies thanks to product and service upsells. So how will the block directory factor in once it’s launched?
Justin Tadlock picks apart the issue in Can the Block Directory and Business Interests Coexist? at WP Tavern. The post is part of a new "From the Comments" series highlighting interesting points of discussion taken from the site’s comments.

"Some projects like Drupal aggressively discourage premium versions, but I imagine that the WordPress tolerance of the freemium model is partially responsible for its success. However, this also creates a tension that is a big gray area," comments site builder and tech enthusiast David McCan, adding "This might be a good time to standardize some rules” around ads and upsetting.

Joe Shift comments: "I suppose I’m fine either way. One thing is for sure: the block directory will grow faster if business interests are allowed in some capacity."
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In other news...

  • - Stratus5, a company that specializes in cloud business services and SaaS automation, has launched Dollie, a cloud-based eCommerce solution for WordPress developers looking to provide white-label hosting services to their customers. Reporting for WP Tavern, Justin Tadlock in Dollie Platform Launches, Provides Tools to Build and Deploy Pre-Configured WordPress Installs he writes the platform allows developers and agencies to sell custom, pre-configured WordPress solutions to their clients.
  • - What is missing in WordPress? Governance, according to UX architect Cathi Bosco, who shares her experience contributing to the WordPress Governance Project and encourages others in the community to get involved. "Can we set a goal for 2020 to improve the health and transparency of our ecosystem?... WordPress cannot expect to be leading the way to democratize publishing without basic governance in place," she writes.
  • - As both a WordPress VIP technical account manager and a core security release lead on the WordPress project Jake Spurlock knows one of the most critical aspects of enterprise WordPress well: security. In The anatomy of a WordPress core security update, he shares a behind-the-scenes look at one small slice of what it takes to make WordPress a secure platform for 35% of the internet.
  • - In Announcing the Business 5000, Matt Medeiros from the Matt Report shares that he’s launching a a business idea accelerator for new entrepreneurs and it’s all happening via an email newsletter.
  • - Having an Eco-Friendly Website isn’t that hard, as support engineer Michael Beckwith writes on the Maintainn blog.
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