A Little Support?

Posted November 30, 2009 by Jen. Filed under General.

Thanksgiving was last week, and I thought about doing a post to thank the people who contribute to WordPress core, since this is a group of people I’m thankful for on a daily basis. I started a draft, and then realized that with 2.9 in beta, we’ll have a release announcement sometime in the next few weeks (barring unforeseen complications, etc), and all the core contributors will be thanked then. Though I think it’s worth giving thanks every day for the people who make WordPress possible, I don’t like to clutter up anyone’s feed readers with repetitive posts, so I decided to wait until today for my post, and to focus solely on the other group I’d planned to include: support forum volunteers.

Forum volunteers don’t get a lot of flashy attention. There aren’t flame wars about whether or not the support forums should be commercial instead of free and community-run. There generally aren’t big arguments and debates over whose point of view is the right one. What the forums do have is amazing volunteers who give their time to help other WordPress users and developers learn. People who only know a little answer easy questions that maybe they’ve only recently learned the answers to themselves. People with more expert skills help troubleshoot larger issues. If someone offers advice that could be better, others will add their solutions to the mix. Of all the WordPress users I’ve met in person, not one person got started without visiting the forums. In many cases, people turn to the forums even before the Codex. In the support forums, I see a lot of what is best about our community, and almost none of that which is not.*

Without further ado, here’s my thank you to the volunteers who make the support forums work. Without them, we would be less than what we are today. I’m listing people by their wporg.ibadboy.net usernames, since that’s how you see them in the forums.

Official wporg.ibadboy.net Support Forum Moderators

These are the people who’ve officially got your back and have been active in the past few months. See them at a WordCamp? Buy them a beer! Otto42jeremyclark13MichaelH, samboll, Chris_K. MichaelH suggested we also recognize Moshu, Podz, Kafkaesqui for past meritorious service.

The Honor Roll
These people are not official moderators, but their knowledge and activity levels have caught the attention of those who are. A big round of thanks to these folks for selflessly sharing their knowledge with other WordPress users.

Most active volunteers, nominated by more than one official moderator for recognition (for the reasons given):
alchymyth – “Overall knowledge”
apljdi – “Overall knowledge and programming skills”
t31os_ – “Programming skills”
whooami – “For her security responses” “Knows her stuff”

Generally active volunteers, nominated by official moderators for recognition:
esmi, ClaytonJames, numeeja, stvwlf, buddhatrance, songdogtech, alism, alchymyth, Ipstenu, RVoodoo, jdingman, kmessinger, ArnoldGoodway, Shane G., figaro, jonimueller, blepoxp, cais, mfields, designdolphin, doc4, greenshady, mercime, mrmist, bh_WP_fan , henkholland, krembo99, jdembowski, pboosten, adiant, andrea_r, GDHosting, Gangleri.

Some newcomers who’ve been getting active:
a_johnson, equalmark, WebTechGlobal, kymac.

And an additional shoutout to plugin authors who take an active role in moderating threads regarding their plugins, again nominated by official moderators for recognition:
scribu, GDragoN, sivel, MikeChallis, GamerZ, alexrabe, arnee, sociable, takayukister, hallsofmontezuma, joostdevalk, filosofo, roytanck, donncha, Hiroaki Miyashita, manojtd, froman118, error, Viper007Bond, alexkingorg, cavemonkey50, azaozz, aaroncampbell, isa.goksu, flipper, joedolson, redwallhp, eight7teen, orenshmu, WebGeek, Otto42, toddiceton, the_dead_one, mywpplugin, MattyRob, markjaquith, TobiasBg, Txanny, elfin, jolley_small, stastoc, anmari, micropat, frekel.

One more time, a huge THANK YOU to everyone who contributes to the support forums at wporg.ibadboy.net.

As we close out 2009 and get closer to 2010, it would be great for us to start thinking about some ways we could make it easier/more rewarding for people to be involved in the forums and other aspects of the open source project. I’ve started a forum thread to discuss some ideas with the thought that we can try a couple after the holidays and see what takes.

* I say almost because let’s face it, we all get caught in the traps of trolls sometimes, and patience can be hard to keep when someone is a jerk. So a reminder to all who use the forums: be nice to the people who are trying to help you! 🙂

P.S. While I’m at it, here’s another tip/request. Search the forums for your problem before posting; if it’s already been answered before (often more than once), you’re kind of wasting people’s time by posting it again without trying the previous solutions first. Please respect the time of the volunteers by searching first (and mention in your post what you’ve already tried).

WordPress Wins CMS Award

Posted November 18, 2009 by Matt Mullenweg. Filed under General.

I was very excited last week to learn that WordPress has been awarded the Overall Best Open Source CMS Award in the 2009 Open Source CMS Awards. This is a landmark for us, as it is the first time we’ve won this award, and it marks a shift in the public perception of WordPress, from blog software to full-featured CMS. No small contest, the Open Source CMS Awards received over 12,000 nominations and more than 23,000 votes across five categories.

As Hiro Nakamura said when he first bent time and space to land in Times Square: “Yatta!”

In addition to winning in the Overall Best Open Source CMS category, WordPress was named first runner-up in the Best Open Source PHP CMS category. This is significant because we weren’t even in the top 5 last year, and now we’re #2, ahead of Joomla! As is stated on the Award site, “WordPress made its way into the top five for the first time. The fact that it was outranked by Drupal by a very slight margin indicates how popular it has become with users as well as developers over the past year.”

Every day thousands of new people are embracing WordPress to power not just their blogs but entire sites and communities without compromising on usability or scalability (as would be the case with a legacy CMS). Every member of the WordPress community, from core developer to beginning user, should be proud to be part of this momentum: congratulations to us all!

Core Contributors at WordCamp NYC

Posted November 17, 2009 by Jen. Filed under WordCamp.

WordCamp NYC was last weekend, and it was crazy awesome to have so many WordPress users and developers together in one place (final numbers to come, but looks like over 700). One of my favorite moments was right at the end, when someone suggested getting a picture of the core contributors (I’d asked them all to stand so people could applaud them when we were doing the closing remarks). Some of them were camera shy and kept out of the happysnap, but here’s a handful of the people who make WordPress what it is.

Core Contributors at WordCamp NYC
From left: Matt Martz (sivel), Jeremy Clarke, Shane Froebel (^BuGs^), Jane Wells, Matt Mullenweg, Mark Jaquith, Beau Lebens, Andy Peatling, John James Jacoby (jjj).
Photo by Chris Cochran.

WordPress 2.8.6 Security Release

Posted November 12, 2009 by Ryan Boren. Filed under Releases, Security.

2.8.6 fixes two security problems that can be exploited by registered, logged in users who have posting privileges.  If you have untrusted authors on your blog, upgrading to 2.8.6 is recommended.

The first problem is an XSS vulnerability in Press This discovered by Benjamin Flesch.  The second problem, discovered by Dawid Golunski, is an issue with sanitizing uploaded file names that can be exploited in certain Apache configurations. Thanks to Benjamin and Dawid for finding and reporting these.

Get WordPress 2.8.6.

Bug Hunt in Progress!

Posted November 7, 2009 by Jen. Filed under Development.

Just in case anyone forgot, the first of the November bug hunts for version 2.9 is now in progress, and will last another day. If you’ve got a dev environment set up, please consider pitching in to run some tests and help get us closer to the 2.9 milestone release.

Upcoming WordCamps

Posted November 6, 2009 by Jen. Filed under WordCamp.

There are six WordCamps coming up before the end of the year, and since I like to make sure people know about it when there’s a WordCamp near them, here’s the list, with some personal commentary thrown in. If you just want the list without my asides, check out the full schedule at WordCamp.org.

WordCamp Phoenix is first up, on November 13. I’d planned on attending this one myself before they changed the date (it was originally scheduled for the 7th), but will sadly have to miss it as it conflicts with WordCamp NYC. If you, like me, can’t make it to Phoenix, be sure to check their web site for information on the live stream they’re planning to provide. If it’s anywhere near the quality of the stream from Portland or Seattle earlier this fall, it’ll be just like being there, but without a t-shirt to show for it (and theirs has stripes, so if you’re local, you should go!). My only consolation in missing this WordCamp is that I’ve seen about half of the speakers before. If you’re going, don’t miss the session by John Hawkins on Building a WordPress Plugin; it got me to write my first plugin in Portland! Matt‘ll be there, will you?

WordCamp Victoria is next, on November 14. This is another one I’d love to go to, but can’t because it’s at the same time as New York’s. I would especially have liked to go because it looks like the speakers are all local, and I haven’t seen any of them speak before. Occasionally WordCamps lose a little of the local feeling by focusing on visiting speakers, so it’s nice to see so many Vancouverites on the list. They’ll have a Blogger track and a Technical track running concurrently, so there should a little something for everyone. No word on a live stream, but hopefully they’ll be able to catch some of the presentations on video and post them to WordPress.tv after the event.

WordCamp Bangkok is scheduled for November 15. I have to admit that the first thing that catches my eye on their agenda is “WordPress Band.” I’ve known WordCamps to have people performing songs before, but a whole band? Might be a first. I hope they’ll post the video to WordPress.tv, too.

WordCamp New York City is the same weekend as the previous three, on November 14-15. In the interest of full disclosure, I need to tell you that I’m one of the organizers of WordCamp NYC, so my informative comment about it here may be a little biased. 🙂 That said, we have over 50 confirmed speakers (both local and visiting), and 2 full days of content in 8 — count ’em, 8 — tracks. Newbies get a free year of hosting and walked through setting up a WordPress blog in workshop format, while the other tracks have specialized content for Bloggers, CMS Users, Beginning Developers, Advanced Developers, Academic Users, people interested in MU/BuddyPress, and the Open Source Community. Did I mention the theme and plugin contest? Or the awesome shirts? How about the Genius Bar, or the Hacker Room? The additional Unconference sessions? If you’re anywhere near NYC that weekend (and with the Acela, that’s anywhere from Boston to D.C.), you should definitely come. I’ll be there, Matt’ll be there, lead developer Mark Jaquith will be there, lead developer of BuddyPress Andy Peatling will be there, and too many other WordPress luminaries and locals to mention. If we hit 800 registrations by November 12, I’m baking cookies for everyone.

WordCamp Peru will be on November 28 in Lima. I was checking out their topics list, and it looks like they’re planning to cover all the usual topics around blog administration, security, increasing traffic, and integration with social media sites. No speaker list yet, but if you’re in Peru, it looks like this will be a nice gathering of WordPress users, and they’re hoping to have around 100 people attend.

WordCamp Orlando is the last of the year, on December 5. They haven’t published a speaker list or schedule yet, but I know Matt will be there, Mark Jaquith will be there, and I will be there. I know some other awesome core contributors are planning to come, but I don’t want to jinx anything, so if you’re curious, come see for yourself. Plus, Florida in December!




See Also:

Want to follow the code? There’s a development P2 blog and you can track active development in the Trac timeline that often has 20–30 updates per day.

Want to find an event near you? Check out the WordCamp schedule and find your local Meetup group!

For more WordPress news, check out the WordPress Planet or subscribe to the WP Briefing podcast.


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