WordCamp US 2019 – State of the Word

By | November 5, 2019


…>>Hello! Welcome to the State of the
Word. Thank you all for being here. I’m hoping you’re having
an amazing time. And now I would like to welcome
to the stage, Matt Mullenweg. [ Applause ]
MATT: Thank you very much. Whoo — good afternoon,
everybody. St. Louis. How about that City Museum?
[ Applause ] Kind of wild. Do we still have
the same number of people here as before? That’s always something that I
have to worry about. Thank you, Jen, for welcoming us
all to WordCamp US. The St. Louis team has done an amazing
job hosting. But before we actually get
started with the State of the Word, I have a surprise for you.
So, there’s been a documentary made about WordPress. And I
think it really captures the spirit of who we are and what we
do. So, before we get started, I would like to present the world
premier of Open: The Community Code. [ Applause ]>>So, Matt, there’s a $10
billion ecosystem surrounding WordPress. How do you reconcile
all the volunteers giving so much of their time to the community without pay and the
business of WordPress that makes so much money?
MATT: I think that the way — let me restart that.>>Then I opened my browser to a
choice of search engines that look up anything I can think.
Whether it’s my project or games. It sounds complicated,
but really, it all happens behind the scenes so it’s easy
for you. And you’re right. You can find anything from planning
a vacation to MTV or real-time
live audio. The net is fabulous.>>You know, maybe you’ve read
or heard about the Internet, but you’re still not exactly sure
what it is. If that’s the case, in no time at all, you’ll be
able to impress everyone with your amazing tech know savvy. [modem noises!]>>What about if I want to do my
own home page?>>Now, that’s a big project. You better get someone to help
you.>>It’s a piece of software that
allows people to produce and publish
websites on the Internet. And do so at a very affordable
price. And its value is to be able to
make publishing and Internet publishing open to everyone.
MATT: With WordPress, it is open source. So, from a legal point of view,
from a software freedom point of view, you can change every line
of code, redistrict it, fork it, you can modify it, you can
delete it. You can do really whatever you like. Regardless
of what the developers or the creators want you to, even,
you know?>>You know, a lot of people who
haven’t seen it probably don’t understand it. They kind of feel
if you release your wear wares to the public, you’re
giving it away, you’re not going to make any money doing it.>>Open source is a methodology
for development that literally depends on a critical mass of
humans. And the more people we have contributing to the
WordPress open source software, the better the software gets for
more people.>>I’m curious, what’s this gone gonna look like from a
functional standpoint?>>WordPress is made by hundreds
of thousands of volunteers around the world. And most
people think WordPress is made of code. And it’s true.
Obviously, it’s a software. So, it’s made of code. But it’s made
of so much more.>>WordPress is — is a set of
code. It is a website. It is a service. It is all these other
things. But it’s also an idea. Idea that brings people
together. And that is something we can believe in. Something
that gives hope, and something that we can influence. And I
think especially in today’s day and age when there’s so much
going on in the world, something that we can believe in and make the world — leave
the world a little bit better than how we
found it. Try to create the web that we want. Our loved ones and future
progeny to grow up in.>>This community is not made up
of — they’re all volunteers. And so, a lot of people, why do
you do this? What is it about this community?>>I think a lot about why —
what motivates someone to participate in our program as a
volunteer. Whether it’s day of staff,
organizing team, speaker, et cetera. Some people come to us
because they are so grateful to have this free
software of WordPress and want to give back to the effort that
makes WordPress possible. A lot of people come to us cause
they believe in the mission and they want to further it. A lot of people come to us
because they realize that working within our program is a great way to grow their
skills.>>A WordCamp is a conference
that is completely centered around WordPress. So, if you go
to another conference, you’re gonna go to a conference that
has all different kinds of topics. Right? But when you go
it a WordCamp, it’s two full days of everything related to
WordPress.>>See you, we’re happy to chat
about anything. And have a good camp.
[ Applause ]>>Everybody here is
volunteering, is that right?>>Everyone here is
volunteering.>>Okay.
>>Now, I should say that our lead organizer, her volunteer has
been a 40 +, maybe even a 60 + volunteer job for at least the
past three weeks, probably even more. And so, our — we are
volunteering. But at the end, volunteering almost turns into
that full-time job. And so, because of that, the
volunteers either work for themselves and have their own company, and, they
take their valuable time and give it to
this initiative. Or they have very understanding and
supportive employers who understand the value of
community and understand the value of this event. And so by doing so, they then
allow all of us just to give everything we have in this final
stretch to this event.>>And so, I want to thank these
great companies for serving on this panel and doing what you
do. Every day. Thank you. [ Applause ]
>>I’ve gone to a lot of conferences. And those are
called conferences, industry events. This is called
community. There’s a difference. Go to an industry event, go to a
trade show, it’s about business. You go to a WordCamp conference,
it’s about the community and making relationships.
>>WordPress is the community. It’s the passion that people
have for what they do. I think it’s the idea that you can
create as you will. And you can work with people at things like WordCamps and meetups and
through contributor teams. And I think it just makes people feel at home and welcome and I think
it’s just something that everyone is looking for. A
place to belong.>>Every person in the community
has this commonality of being open
and wanting to help others without
fear of hiding what they’re working on
or without fear of competition. As you’ll see in this community,
or maybe as you have seen, there are people that work for various
web hosts that are all very good friends. There’s no sense
of, you know, we’re better than you or we’ve — we don’t want
you to succeed. Everybody kind of helps each
other.>>I mean, we hear that in
natural disasters. Oh, this community was so great.
Everybody stepped up and helped each other. And I think that’s
kind of human nature. Except when you get into the
world of business or, I want to sell this and make money. Or I
need to do this to put food on the table. In spite of all that,
when you come to a WordCamp, it’s so inspiring to
see the openness and the willingness of everybody to help
each other.>>I just got there and I was
like, this is unbelievable. All of these people are here to make
a piece of software used by millions of people.
>>This is a community that really thrives on openness,
collaboration and including more people than they necessarily need.
>>So, Matt, there’s a $10 billion ecosystem surrounding
WordPress. How do you reconcile all the
volunteers giving so much time to the community without pay and
the business of WordPress that makes so much money?
MATT: I think that the way — hm. Let me restart that. So, WordPress is built on the
GPL, which provides the four freedoms. One of the freedoms
says that you can charge for things. So, although we distribute all
the WordPress stuff for free, if you want to take it, repackage it and charge
for it, that’s totally fine. So, when you look at the $10 billion
a year flowing through the
WordPress community, it’s built on things. But it’s also people
building eCommerce and selling quilts or
photographs or anything else. So, it’s enabled by WordPress.
We have a thing we push, five for the future. Which is the
idea of whatever you’re getting out of WordPress, if you can put
5% back into essentially things that benefit the community, not
just you, it avoid avoids the strategy of the commons. This
sort of thing that is common in open source and in lots of
things that everyone kind of overmines the shared resource
and then it dries up. It doesn’t get the investment or the care
taking it needs to be truly sustainable. I think 5% is
actually a good rule of thumb. And that can be given back in
terms of time, money, donations — it’s
just basically say saying, 5% of the
time, or 5% of my resources I’m gonna put
back towards things that benefit the world. And that, I think if the whole
world did that, it would be a much
better place.>>Why do you want to keep doing
it if? It’s not time to exit, let
someone else step in and do all of the work? Aren’t you ready
to let go? No, I’m not. Because if I wasn’t doing this,
I would be missing it because I really enjoy it. I have fun.
There’s a great sense of accomplishment whenever you work
with a group of people and when you put together an
amazing WordCamp. And it has nothing to do with
any kind of recognition, any kind of business decision. It
really is about, this is truly what I enjoy doing. It’s a
hobby.>>It’s community over
competition, right? It’s like how can we build this thing that
everyone — everyone has a piece of the pie. Everyone has a way to impact the
world with their thoughts and their beliefs. And I think
that’s why I feel passionately about it. I like the idea that
everyone is welcome and everyone can create and everyone can
change.>>WordPress is a tool. It’s a canvas, it blank canvas
and people can paint on it something very beautiful or they
can paint something very hateful and ugly. I do believe as
humanity becomes more connected, as we interact with
each other more, that begins to break down the biggest myth of
modernity which is that we’re all separate. Because we’re not. And the more the people learn
that and connect to their fellow humans and other things in nature, we realize
that we’re all part of the same system. All part of the same
thing. The actions of one impacts everything else in the
system. Whether that’s the planet, climate, nature, animals, space. [laughs]
Who knows where it goes? [ Guitar music] [ Applause ] MATT: So, sorry, I’ve got to let
the credits run. MATT: Portland, Seattle,
Nashville and Phoenix. And released under a creative
commons license. You can learn more — yeah.
>>We can’t tell you everything about it, because it’s changing
every day.>>That’s right.
MATT: I think we can stop now.>>Get on it and start
exploring.>>Let’s go!
MATT: I love those old Internet clips. You might have seen some
familiar name there is. That was produced by Mark
Maunder and Kathy Zant you might know from
some of the WordFence work. But I thought this was a beautiful
contribution to the WordPress world. And we’re actually going
to be submitting it to festivals coming up. So, hopefully this can make it
into SX or any one of the festivals. If you have pull with
those, see if we can get it in. But good illustration of the
different types of contributions. That’s my first time seeing the
final, final, final cut. Can we premier that at State of the
Word? That would be kind of cool. Thank you all for enjoying that.
[ Applause ] So, to officially jump in,
howdy, St. Louis. I’m told that this place is also called The
Lou. Is that something y’all say? Do people from the UK look
at you funny? [ Laughter ] This is actually not my first
time in St. Louis, I was back here for a
happiness meetup in 2011. My first exposure to City Museum
and I’m familiar with St. Lieu that Lunatics and other ambassadors.
I wasn’t aware that St. Louis hosted the World’s Fair in 1904
and many amazing technological innovations have come out of
here, the wireless telephone, the Xray machine, electric
streetcars, and the first prototype of gas and electric
automobiles. Took like a hundred years to come back to the
electric. Seemed fitting to have the event here and look at where
WordPress has been and where we’re gonna go. This event was brought to you by
47 organizers, 122 volunteers and
90 speakers yesterday and today. [ Applause ] This event was also brought to
you by the sponsors that make it so that the ticket is so
inexpensive. Thank you to bluehost,
WooCommerce, Jetpack and Google. [ Applause ] So, as we head into the final
months of 2019, with actually our earliest
WordCamp US in a while, it’s good to take time to reflect on
everything that we’ve worked together on,
collaborated, our accomplishments and just
everything that’s been going on this year. We’ve had two Core
releases so far this year. First WordPress 5.1, named for Betty
Carter. Included the first iteration of the site health
screen. Some of you might be familiar with. That’s a few
fans. [ Applause ]
The idea behind this is that, again, WordPress is all about
empowering users. And we want to put the information and the
tools in the hands of users as well to keep the site running in
tiptop shape as we power an ever-increasing percentage of
the web. It is our responsibility and behooves us
to make sure that portion of the web is safe, secure, up to date
and running the latest and greatest stuff. This allows and
gives people information they can use
themselves or get in touch with their support hosting or things
like that. We had a lot of developer
experience improvements in 5.1. In the Cron API, this is kind of
the thing that republics runs in the
background of WordPress that makes actions happen at certain
times. You schedule a post. Ever wondered how that gets posted at
the time that you scheduled it? We have a weird Cron thing built
into WordPress. We’ve enhance it now so hosts
that have a lot of Cron scheduled tasks
can hook into that and make it more efficient better for the
fans in the room, a site meta feature, we
can store arbitrary data as opposed to options as we used
to. And 5. 2, jailed for Jaco Pastorious in
May. And the left is the old, and on
the right, the new, all available in Gutenberg and you
can edit them in line and see exactly what they’re going to
look like in the real-time Gutenberg interface. I did a quick iteration based on
feedback from y’all saying there were a lot of blocks. Good
problem to have. For yourself or your clients, you could hide or
show certain blocks. We have our block manager. And finally, you
shouldn’t see this anymore. WSOD. Stands for the white screen of
death. I guess originally it was called
this because, you know, it was a play on the blue screen of death
that Windows famously had. But if you visit your site, you see
this, there was probably some sort of PHP error or something that is
preventing your site from loading. And unfortunately, that
makes it hard to fix your side if it’s
erroring out. Now when something like this happens, particularly from an autoor
plugin upgrade, you’ll get a special email with a link to
navigate to your URL which deactivates the plugin before it
loads. And allows you to then turn it
off and get back into your site. So, again, this is just an
example of something coming up from users, coming up from the
support forms that we’ve identified as common barriers in
our user experience. And did a lot of work to try to
rectify. WordPress 5.3 is coming out on November 12th. So, just
around the corner. This is not a preannouncement of
the — we always do that on the day. So, you’ll see which jazz
person it’s named for. But it’s a very, very exciting
release for a number of things. We have over 150 block editor
improvements. So, some of you might not know, but the version
of Git that’s been shipping with WordPress 5. 2 is a few months out of date
now and it’s been lots of updates since
then as I will talk about more later. I’m very, very excited to get
the Gutenberg improvements in the hands of our wider audience.
It’s also coming with a new default theme. This is Twenty
Twenty. It is a Gutenberg first. Beautiful CMS-powered theme with
an original design distributed by
Anders, and expanded by the Twenty Twenty team. It is really
slick. I’ve switched my own site, MATT, over to it. And it
really highlights some of the power of Gutenberg. I highly
encourage you to look into that. If you would like to get
involved with some of the final — I guess we’re basically done.
But if you want to see the code behind it and what went into it,
you can check it out on GitHub as well. And in the vein of
improving things for administers and making WordPress easier to run for everyone, we’ve put
in a screen which verifies your admin email, separate from the
user email. Send out emails when things were autoupdating or
broke, we found a lot of people had set that up email
when they first started and never looked at it again. Now
every six months, you’ll get a, hey, is this your best email
text screen? Again, these things seem simple, but it’s a
foundation on which we can build a lot else on because we can
make more things dependent on that admin email. Also 5. 3 is going to have more
developer stuff. So much with Gutenberg, but I’ll talk about
it later. Time and day component fixes
that probably three people here in the audience know about.
Raise your hand if you know what those mean. Ah, pretty savvy
audience. That’s at least 40. We updated to be compatible with
the latest. PHP 7.4 which is faster and better than ever. It was also a year where we
raised the minimum PHP version of WordPress.
[ Applause ] We ended support for PHP 5.2 to
5.3. And I have an interesting stat that for people running
WordPress 5.2 5. 2, which is our latest stable
release, 83% on PHP 5.– or PHP 7 or later. So, we are seeing people who are updating WordPress are also
updating PHP which is very exciting. However, digging into
the stats, we found out something else. 10% of all
WordPresss we’re tracking are on older versions of PHP. So, we think this might be
contributing to some people stuck on older versions of
WordPress. Seems they are running a higher percentage than
the general population of older versions of PHP which
we tracked all the way to 5.0. We have a lot of work. 10% of
the WordPress on the world are too old to upgrade PHP ends up
being a lot of them. You can call that about 3% of the web. So, it sort of woke me up to the
fact that we’re going to need to dive into these and work with
the web host and the — excuse me — people most hosting them
to try to get these on the latest and greatest. While this
has been going on, there’s a ton of fun stuff happening on the
mobile side of WordPress which is a crucial important for user
adoption part that sometimes we forget about it in the
day-to-day development. So, of the 38 core blocks that are in
Gutenberg, we have now ported 10 of them to mobile and we got
Gutenberg on mobile in the first place. So, congrats to that team.
[ Applause ] Excuse me. So, the block editor is now
available on both iOS and Android devices.
Including one additional block in the release coming out on
Monday. We are almost done with offline
support. Which means you’ll be able to blog and use the
WordPress app on the plane, train or automobile when you’re
not connected. Or maybe even a conference like this. And we have Dark Mode done on
iOS and that will be coming to Android in a matter of weeks. Of
course, the people side of WordPress, as we just heard from
that — the Open film, is one of the most exciting. And the events and people side
of WordPress has had an exciting year as well. In 2019, there will be 141
WordCamps. This is a big one all over the
world. 34 of those in brand new cities. We also have this new
thing, 17 of which, and one of which
tomorrow, called Kidscamps which is — yeah.
[ Applause ] Events adjacent to WordCamps
designed specifically for our younger contributors. I believe at this camp — here
at WordCamp US, one of our youngest speakers ever. Four at
what age? Let’s call it 14 or 15. So, very, very excited for
a new generation. It’s a little scary to also think that they weren’t born when WordPress
started. [ Laughter ] I don’t know if that made y’all
feel old. It definitely made me feel a little advanced. We’ve had over 5,000 meetups.
The WordPress meetups are the more monthly events happening
over the world in almost every city. And 16 do action charity
hackathons. WordPress volunteers and community members come
together and create websites for nonprofits and set them up to
just have a beautiful web presence. This was also a year
when we started bringing in more of the people’s stories to the
WordPress.org blog. Our news site. So, the icon on the left is Hero
Press. If you haven’t come across Hero
Press before, highly recommend checking it out. And maybe you
want to have a story to share there. It’s a community site
which highlights of journeys of how people came
to WordPress and the effect that it’s had on their life and
they’ve had on WordPress as well. We started highlighting
one of these per month on the WordPress.org blog. And it’s
been really, really exciting to get to know more of the people
behind WordPress. And, in fact, many of them are new stories to
me as well. So, it’s a must-read for me
every month. There’s a sad part of 2019 as
well. We did lose some community
members viper 007 bonds, known as Alex
Mills. And many people might have lost
other folks in the community. I want to take a brief moment of
silence to remember and thank those who are not longer with
us. Alex was an amazing contributor
to WordPress. A great friend. A great colleague. We are —
Automattic is putting together a scholarship to parallel the Kim Barcel’s scholarship to
bring someone to WordCamp. This will be targeted at a
plugin developer who hasn’t had the chance to visit WordCamp US
yet. There will be a full scholarship, full ride for them.
And the beautiful part of this is Alex’s story mirrors that
quite a bit. His mom was telling me where he was a little bit
more introverted. But he found out there was going
to be a WordCamp nearby. Even though he was a big contributor,
he had never been to any of the events. That allow allowed him to
blossom into a new set of friends, a job of Automattic and
everything that changed for him in that last decade. It had been a very, very
eventful 11 months. We’ve had lots of ups and downs. That’s what this graphic is
illustrateing. And but we’ve had thousands of people come
together as well. I do want to rewind a little bit. And talk
about where we were just about a year ago. So, close your eyes and imagine
that WordPress 5.0, probably the biggest change we had ever made to WordPress in its
16-year history came out the day before WordCamp US started in
Nashville. We had people coordinating work from airplanes, there were impromptu
groups of Core and developers in the
hallways. And the polyglots working
together. And the snazzy release video. That was a controversial
year. We came together and decided to make this big change
because we wanted to, first, disrupt ourselves. We want to
empower more WordPress users to realize our mission of
democratizing publishing and make the web a more open and
welcoming place. But, you know, Gutenberg got some feedback.
These are all reel Tweets or quotes from articles. I don’t
want to pile on to the Gutenberg hate, but come on, this is
nowhere near ready. I think it’s safe to say,
capitalize hate, the Gutenberg WordPress editor now. And a lower case P — Gutenberg
is just plain terrible and barely functional. A design should make my life
easier, not harder. And finally, don’t update to WordPress 5.0.
There was lots and lots of feedback on that. And I think we
learned a lot. Both in the process, but also
in how we can communicate change better in the future. Although
there are no changes on the horizon as big as Gutenberg was. Think of that as like, you know,
a batting swing for batters before
they go up to the mound. We have ideas for future changes. I
think we have a great opportunity making big changes
in the future. Built that trust in the conversations around testing, using GitHub for
development, things like accessibility. So, I understand
why we had a lot of this feedback. But we did get through
it together. So, thank you. We have had, since that 5.0
release, 20 releases of the Gutenberg plugin. So, the pace
of iteration of Gutenberg has kept up. And I’m also very, very
proud to say, because there was some discussion around kind of
contributions, that the number of Gutenberg contributors since
5. 0 has grown from 200 to over
480. Over doubling year-to-year. I’m
also very excited to say that even as WordPress becomes more
advanced, incorporate new technologies,
you’re all learning JavaScript deeply, we’re going to have the
most contributors we’ve ever had to WordPress ever this year. In 2018 we had about 594
contributors. This year so far we’re at 1122
unique contributors. Thank you. [ Applause ] Also, thank you for clapping. It allows me to take a drink. I want to throw some more in
there. The current release, 5. 3, coming out November 12th is
said to have the most contributors of any release in
our history by over a hundred people. I’m happy to say that the
adoption of Gutenberg is going fantastic. We have over 2.7 more
sites using Gutenberg than not. And this is actually probably
undercounting because we’re subtracting everyone using the
Classic Editor from this. But those useing the Classic Editor
know, the Classic Editor is a plugin we promoted heavily with the
upgraded 5. 0 to allow those using the new
editor to use the old editor. It doesn’t turn off Gutenberg,
you can toggle between them so you can
decide which one you want to use. So, we believe some
interesting number, I don’t know how exactly, but an interesting
number of the Classic Editor users are also using Gutenberg
as well. We just passed, two days ago,
50 million posts made with Gutenberg.
[ Applause ] And that number is going up
fast. We’re seeing over 270,000 per
day. And, again, this is a subset of
the posts that we’re tracking. This is only folks running the
Dev pack plugin that we get the stat from. That is the floor of
where that number actually is. So, to look at where Gutenberg
is today, and to talk about some of the development and work we
have been putting into it. First and foremost, I want to talk
about performance. I’m so proud of the team for this graph. So,
what you see on the left there is the average seconds to load
for version 5. 0 and all the way on the right
is release 5.3. We’ve halved the time it takes to load
Gutenberg in the post and edit screen. We also, one of the
things that we notice when had we first launched is the actual
typing lag for all the complex things we were doing in
Gutenberg was fairly high. Test going from 170 milliseconds in
5.0 down to 53 milliseconds. Again, down by two-thirds in
terms of the speed that’s going in there.
We put on some fun user enhancement it is sop, for
example, when we first launched, when you move blocks
around, they should just pop around with added motion. Now
you can kind of see what’s going on. It just feels a lot better. And, of course, this also
respects the motion sensitivity settings to set on your browser
for accessibility. We added a typewriter mode. This is pretty
fun. Because like a classic typewriter, it keeps your
vertical place as you type. So, this avoids jarring jumps
and jumping to the bottom of the screen. A more pleasant
experience from the editor and something I want from every
editor that I use. We have the block previews. Because the
blocks when it was just the icon and the name, you never
know, we re-created a little bit of the problem we were trying to
solve. When the block pro views is show
you a preview of what the block is going to look lie like and allow for
explanation. If you were clicking on something, what is
masonry? It will show you. That is a fair question. And these cool tile gal arise galleries, kind of a
Pinterest-style. And we have the accessibility to navigate
through blocks and you can press escape to go into the
navigation mode. What’s coming for Gutenberg? I’m more excited
about the catchup in version 5. 3. This is the simplest thing.
But you. We actually found — we have been gathering stats on
what people were searching for Gutenberg blocks. And one of
the very, very top things was social icons. These are like the NASCAR
stickers of the web. They’re everywhere. But you can now add icons any
place you can put a Gutenberg block. And we created a really
nice interface for doing so. A huge project we have been
working on is taking the navigation menu.
This is what was previously an entire screen inside of
WordPress with its own everything, that’s what you see
on the left. And making it it an inline Gutenberg block that
still supports all the functionality and even adds some
new. So, what you’re seeing there is
a color picker which is something you couldn’t do with
the old navigation editor. By the way, you might see we
have renamed it from menu to navigation. This is going to
make the restaurant users of WordPress understand it a lot
faster. Real issue we’ve run into in testing. We’ve created
the ability to do gradients in Gutenberg. A gradient tool. This was actually fairly fun
because it’s a complex interaction. We were able to put
it together in an exciting way. So, you can create blocks like
it’s 1999 again. That, of course, pairs well with
our multi-button block. These seem basic, but these were
things that we were running into quite a bit that people were
asking for. We are now very now far — we’re
now a year into the idea and the reality that there’s a thousand
block blooming. People are creating blocks right and left.
CSS really exciting to see what’s going on. So, all the things that most
product team of doing as well, they have a block directly. So,
what this is is that you’re going to be able to install
blocks in the block directory. Completely inline. So, what you
just saw happen right there was — what was happening in the
background, rather — is someone typed in the block they were
looking for. They didn’t find anything. They called out to the
centralized WordPress. org block directory, they
clicked added, essentially a plugin got installed, activated
in the background and the block was able to insert
completely instantly, completely inline with no page
loads or anything. [ Applause ] This is also really fun because
as the block directory grows to
incorporate hundreds and thousands of blocks, you can use
those building blocks just inline as what you’re doing. We are also going to expand this
to include patterns. Patterns and collections of blocks. So if you can imagine a
testimonial pattern, slider-type things. Basically collections of
the basic building blocks that take the
most common patterns that you see on websites all over the
world and make them accessible to install with just a single
click. The idea here, and what we’re really trying to enable
with these fundamental building blocks is that you could look at
any website in the world and build that inside of WordPress with
just a few clicks. It is coming. On the community side of things,
we’ve also seen some pretty cool
examples. This is the Mortgage Bankers
Association. A site built by rtcap camp and
createed a letter for the functionality. They’re building
an I’m newsletter in line with Gutenberg. Give a quick call out to
WordCamp Phoenix. Any folks from Phoenix here? Nice. Which got a
little call out in the film. Also made me realize how weird
the word Phoenix is when you look at it. It’s like the word
weird, you’re like, is that O or E there? This is 100% blocks.
And in fact, many of the WordCamps, including WordCamp
US, are now building their entire sites just using
Gutenberg and blocks. Nine publishing is using the
interface in two news rooms for different
for Gutenberg. They estimate that they are saving 15 hours a
week for editors across those news rooms when they implemented
this Gutenberg interface. Finally, Pragmatic created a
plugin which takes a client-created
Word document — not WordPress, Word — and associated images
and ports the content directly in the Gutenberg editor and a
using a combination of core and custom blocks basically makes it
ready to go into their publishing system. Again,
super, super cool. Could we be do a quick round of applause for
these folks? [ Applause ] And also, for deciphering the
Word document format. That’s impressive in and of
itself. Last year, remember, it actually
came up in the Q&A. When someone asked, what
percentage Gutenberg was done. We’re about 10% town. I’m very
excited to say we’re now although 20% done. So, the
important changes, and part of why we made the investment in
Gutenberg was this is the fundamental foundation that
we’re gonna build the next decade of WordPress under. And I — so, we’ll do about 10%
per year. But already as we get to 20%, it
is incredible, humbling and awe
awe-inspiring everything that people are able to create with
what’s in there already. To give a quick reminder: There are
going to be four phases of Gutenberg. We are, I would say,
on the tail end of the easier editing phase. This is where
we’re tackling all the usability problems we had in
TinyMCE and our former editors. Where people were having trouble
manipulating embeds, shortcodes, images. Basically getting the
formats and layouts that they wanted with the old editor. We have increased that usability
tremendously. And the Core team does at least one usability test
a week and posts once a month to the make blogs. Showing kind of
the progress of kind of those real world, not people who are
in this room, people new to WordPress, how are they able to use this
interface? We are currently in the thick of the second phase,
phase two, which is all around customization. To give you a
little update there, we have completed converting all the widgets to block, block
customization, navigation menu, not a plugin,
but coming in Core, the widget
screen and custom widgets with block support. We are finishing
up a block pattern directory and implementing full-site editing.
Like how I slipped the biggest thing there just as a final
bullet point. But it is coming along and there is a light at
the end of the tunnel. As a quick reminder, the final two
phases, the third one is going to be collaboration. Which is
where we take everything that you see in Gutenberg and make it
so that you can real-time co-edit with
anyone else who is editing the same things you are and also
invest some development into the workflow around changes, sharing
changes, previews, et cetera. And then finally, last, we’re
gonna tackle the problem, and have
multi-lingual support. Core to WordPress and core to
Gutenberg. And we get super-excited about that.
[ Applause ] We’re still at the very, very
beginning of this journey. We have been doing Gutenberg for
about two years now. There are 47 releases prior to 5.0 coming
out. We’ve got 20 since then. But it’s the community. All of
you. That really make WordPress great. It was so interesting how
quickly the individual interviews in that film went back to the same word,
community, community. There’s so many parts of how you
can get involved in WordPress. I want to talk about some of my
suggestions if you’re watching this, the thousand-something
people here in this room or the many on the
livestream or the folks that are gonna watch this later, ways that you can get
involved in being a co-creator of WordPress. First is helping
be the change. And you might have heard, before
every single talk we’ve given, that tomorrow there’s gonna be a Contributor
Day. So, if you are able to get to
one of the big WordCamps, there’s
typically a contributor day afterwards. This is the real
life version of what’s going on online. Instead of a make.p.2
and see what’s going on, there’s a table for people working on
localization, all the people working on the editor, whatever
that is. And you can walk over to that table and be part,
alongside the people who make WordPress. I love this concept.
And it’s one of the most powerful things in the world
that with every bit of technology that you interact
with every day, someone made that. And with WordPress, which
many of you interact with every day, it’s probably someone
sitting here in this room and you could very easily become one
of them. So, go by the contributor day
to get involved. Another fun thing is the
Gutenberg plugin is still there. So, when people upgrade to 5.0,
we turned off the Gutenberg plugin for them automatically. Because we had, I think, over a
million testers before. But about 270,000 — 275,000
people have turned it back on. This means that they are getting
those weekly or fortnightly updates to
the Gutenberg plugin before those things get shipped into
core. So, if you would like to see the latest and greatest of
what Gutenberg could be, and there’s a very active
feedback channel for reporting bugs, if you would like to know what’s coming next
in Core Gutenberg. It’s the latest and greatest before the
Core release comes out. We have been doing a lot of experiments
with beta plugins to test features before we go into core. And one that’s pretty small
still, a little over a hundred sites running it. But I would
like people to check out and participate in is the design
experiments. This is where we are able to
make user interface changes in a plugin before we put it into
Core and we can get feedback and do user test on this. Basically
one of the best things that we learned from Gutenberg is we
don’t need to be beholden to the release schedule, which is at
the best three times per year to rapidly iterate and get changes
in the hands of users. Users are the oxygen for any software. And without it, you don’t know
whatever despite whatever planning you
might do, you don’t know how people are
going to interact with the users. And this is a Tweet from someone
who installed the Gutenberg plugin. Hannah Smith, installed
the Gutenberg plugin today, which upgrades the features that
ship with core. OMG!! This is even better. If
this goes into core, we’re all in for a treat. Well done to all
the contributors. So, you can be like Hannah and have — there are three exclamation
points in this Tweet which is pretty impressive for 280
characters. That’s a high percentage of
exclamation points in the Tweet. We need more blocks. So, one of
the most exciting ways to expand the kind of window of
what people are able to do with WordPress today is creating more
of those blocks. So, if you’re building sites for clients or
friends or yourself, and you find yourself needing something
that Gutenberg doesn’t yet support and you have the
technical where with all, and you have learned JavaScript
deeply can and are able to build it, share that, please.
Particularly if it’s JavaScript only and can go in our block
directory. As the blocks increase, it’s almost like the
people using the canvas of WordPress are getting new
colors and textures and paint brushes they can use. And the
things that get created are so inspireing. Also, if you have that technical
wherewithall or know a lot about WordPress, thinking about
helping teach the change. Every single person who contributes to WordPress at some point had
someone else help them get involved. That’s part of why we
have contributors days and put our notes open on
Slack and be open in P2. WordPress is open
as possible. It’s the teaching aspect. It’s really only one of
the places in the world you can work alongside
the developers who create the software that runs a third of
the web. If you wanted to learn better
PHP or better JavaScript, I can think of no better kind of
master class or real-world studio with which to do that. If
you’re interested in learning more, hopefully you made it to the Get
Involved booth which was here at the event. But if not, come to
Contributor Day tomorrow. Someone will be happy to walk
you there through things. Or make.wordPress.org because we
all make WordPress together. Sharing your knowledge can also
come through events and meetups. This is a map of all the meetups happening all over the world. That’s like even Greenland.
[ Applause ] Now, Iceland, though, come on,
Reykjavik, when’s going on? As you can see all over the world
there is probably a WordPress meetup near you. And if there’s not, like let’s
say you’re in Iceland, you can start one. And these are really,
really fun ways to bring community together. And also,
allow you to experience the best part of WordPress, which is the
people. The software is pretty good, but the people are
amazing. In 2020, we’re also going to
redo our regional events WordCamp US and
WordCamp Europe and add a new one, which is WordCamp Asia for
the first time. [ Applause ] These regional events are
fantastic for bringing together contributors in particular. So, you get a lot of the local
WordCamp organizers, the regional folks
to the a11y come to the WordCamp and share at a high level. I
believe WordCamp Asia will be in February. And this first year will be in
Bangkok, Thailand. If you’ve ever wanted to visit there. Good
excuse to. And WordCamp Europe is gonna be
— Porto. That’s right. I love Porto. Porto in Portugal. Also where port is from, if you
have ever enjoyed a good Port. So, check that out. And WordCamp
US will be right back here in St. Louis. [ Applause ]
I might need to come a week early just to go to like City
Museum every day. I did not realize there was a roof.
[ Laughter ] Which makes me wonder. I was
wonder of wondering if my sister actually — basically wonders
how many floors between where I got to and where the roof was
that I missed. We’ve apparently had more social
media posts and Tweets and WordPress
blog posts and anything this WordCamp than we have ever had.
And I have been following it as well. The WCUS tag. It’s been really, really fun to
live vicariously to parts of this event that I was at but did
not see. Why are we doing all this?
We’re trying to help open the web. There is a very natural pendulum
that swings both in societies and in technology and in the web
between open and closed. And as it swings back towards
open, it doesn’t happen for free or automatically, it happens
through a lot of hard work from people like here in this room
creating the type of web that we want to live in and we want the people going to KidsCamps and
their children to live in. We are putting together for
WordPress a few — two final things that I’m
gonna plug. First is now on WordPress. org/news, we are doing our
annual survey which is a very exciting way to show for our
corner of the web what is going on in the technologies and
things that are happening. We are also translating this into I
believe six or nor languages so we’ll be able to for the first
time — better than we have in the past get
feedback from non-English parts of
WordPress as well. And then finally, a little
surprise announcement for y’all. You saw a lot of talk for five
for the future. Just to reiterate, five for the future
is this idea that if WordPress is a big part of your life, try
to think how you can take 5% of your time, could be money,
resources, colleagues, whatever it could be, to put back into
the commons so that, you know, the kind of core WordPress. Which is, again, built largely
by people here in this room. Can grow and get better and be
something that sort of we can benefit from and future
generations can benefit from too. So, WordPress.org/5, you
can type the number or spell it out. We now have a directory. I
believe this came up in a question I believe last year,
WordCamp Europe or here. Is there a way to highlight the
people contributing to 5 for the future? For individuals or
organizations to pledge and show everything they
are sort of pledging and committing to WordPress. And you
can browse them. And then, of course, if you are
ever trying to hire an agency or a
web host or something like that, definitely take a look at the
five for the future page to see which organizations are giving
back to WordPress. And try to vote with your wallet to support
the folks who are really making sure that WordPress can continue
for many years and decades to come.
All right. That’s all I got. [ Applause ]
Oh, actually, wait, wait, wait, wait. There’s — there’s one more
thing. Are y’all ready for this? So, this entire presentation was
actually in Gutenberg. So, this was all on a web page.
And, in fact, the speaker view, which I’ll bring over here, is another
web page. And this is all edited — let’s see if I click this,
what will happen. All edited inside of WP Admin
through Gutenberg. [ Applause ] Also, kind of amazing it didn’t
break, right? [ Laughter ] Let me make this full screen
again. Bring this window back. I lost it. Presenter. Speaker
view. I’ll bring that back. Full
screen. And this code is all on GitHub. We’ll be releasing it.
And can we give a quick round of applause — stand up if you were
working on this. Ella, Mel, Mark… [ Applause ]
There was so much code happening until about like 25 minutes ago. I am
impressed and amazed that that came together so well. So,
congratulations on that. All right. Now, really, we can go to
question and answers. So, just a quick sort of
guidelines for here. We’ll have two mics up here in the front.
You can kind of walk up and line up and we’ll get to you. A light
will briefly shine on you when you’re going to ask your
question. Say your name, where you’re from and try to make it a
question. [ Laughter ]
AUDIENCE: Hello, Matt. Rian Kinney from Miami. As a volunteer, speaker,
organizer and contributor that passionately supports WordPress
and our shared mission to create a more open and accessible web,
I’m concerned because I don’t believe that we currently have a stated
accessibility policy, community code of conduct, conflict of
interest policy, code of ethics, diversity and inclusion policy
or privacy policy. Between the Foundation — so, my
question is two part, first is between Foundation and the
project, who would be responsible for assisting us in
creating and enacting those policies? And the second part is, how is
we as a community, how can we help make
this happen and try to enact some of these policy little over the next 12
it months? MATT: That is a good question.
Thank you. [ Applause ]
One thing, we have some in place. Definitely we have a
privacy policy. We do have some of those already. Maybe we need
to make them more discoverable. AUDIENCE: I don’t believe that
they’re published. I’m a core contributor for privacy and we
have been working as a team on it. But I don’t believe that
it’s been finalized and published yet.
MATT: Let’s make sure. It should be in the footer of WordPress.
org. But I believe we’ve had one of those for a little while. For
the others, I would say that the first priority is always making
sure that what the purpose of each of those policies is, that
WordPress is embodying. And I’m very proud with the improvements
we’ve made to all those areas. In the past year and beyond. You know, especially
particularly accessibility. And that is in spite of there
being a policy or not. We’ve tried to enact bigger
changes in WordPress in a policy-first way in the past. And to be honest, it felt nice,
but it didn’t always make things actually change. So, when we’ve said, every
commit must be XYZ or something like that. Or maybe just had it as a broad
policy. I think we did one for accessibility on the theme
directory once. Didn’t have the same impact as
when we actually built the tools or worked alongside folks to
make the changes. So, I do think about that. I also think about
how can we make all of these policies be about things that we
want people to do, not all negative framing. It was pretty
noticeable when you came in here, some of you might have
noticed the first three things when you
walked into WordCamp US was costumes, weapons and code of
conduct. It was like, whoa! Like little placards for those. Big black and white placards
saying what wasn’t allowed mostly. I think we’ve done
really well in WordPress. We don’t try to enumerate every
possible thing we don’t want people to do. But talk about the
principles we want to create together. And evolve how we present
ourselves at WordCamps to incorporate more of
that. Thank you. In terms of those other policies, let’s talk
about it tomorrow at Contributor Day. So, we can sort of dial in which
ones are there versus not and talk
about what might be a good process for getting them out
there. AUDIENCE: Perfect, thank you,
Matt. MATT: To the left.
AUDIENCE: I’m Alicia from Canada. I was happy to see
security talk this is year. I heard about autoupdates this
morning, there’s 80,000 updates. I work for security and a lot of
them are through plugin vulnerabilitieses, not Core vulnerables. Most users
don’t though, how can WordPress in the community
notify them and note them about security risks of plugin
vulnerabilities, the potential risk of breaking sites with
autoupdates and alternatives like virtual
patching? MATT: That is a super-good
question. And one of the things that’s the nine focuses for the
year, I think it’s super, super, super important. Laying groundwork, like the
admin email. Not just to message people, not just about Core, but
about the plugins they’re using. That’s part of the reason for
getting that in. Sometimes we have to build the foundation
before we build the house on top of it. That’s one of the things
we didn’t have a good up to it version of. Over the time in
very much the hill or the mountain we’re trying to climb
in the distance is that you just log into WordPress and it’s
safe, secure, and you get the latest and greatest. And you
shouldn’t have to think about whether something’s a plugin,
whether it’s if in Core, it’s the theme,
you update the theme but there’s a
security update. At least for the sites that allow us to, set the file permissions as
such, as many sites on the web as possible. I would like to call out and
thank the web host here. All the major web host, the ones we
promote, do automatic updates of Core for major and minor
releases. It has been fantastics for us, they’re getting the
latest and greatest WordPress. But the sites are less likely to
get hacked, compare the 4-year-old version of WordPress
to today’s proprietary alternative. The other thing we are adopting,
on WordPress. com and lots of other hosters,
is autoupdating the plugins. If you’re a host, and you’re not autoupdating, figure out how to
opt out and get on the latest versions. It is true that most
vulnerabilities that we have seen and affect the most sites
have been in plugins and themes. And themes are
particularly hairy. Because people might have customized the
code there. But these are — it’s all just code. And so, for
sites that give us the permission to modify these
things via the file permissions, I think we’ll be able to tackle
it. It’s really impressive. For those at the autoupdating
panel, we had some there. We forget it wasn’t that long ago,
five or six years ago, that everyone
had to autoupdating their WordPress manually. Now we get a 99.5, 99.9
autoupdate. We usually get 60% plus of the WordPresses on the world in a
few weeks. Updated. It’s better than Android. It’s an operating
system for the web that’s going to power so many things that we
know now and so many things we can’t imagine yet. It’s really,
really important that we invest in that autoupdate
mechanism. Thank you. A great place to contribute, especially
if you work on security stuff. All right.
AUDIENCE: Hi, Matt. My name is — I’m from Yoast. I’m from the
Netherlands. And so, at Yoast we’ll really
into Gutenberg and Guten blocks. We have a lot of schema updates
in Gutenberg. But our research shows that only half of our customers use the block
editor. And that’s hard. Because that means that we have to
basically maintain two products. And I’m wondering if you know
how we can convince more people to start using the block editor. Because there is a lot of
negativity surrounding it. And we’re trying to be
supportive. But it is — it’s hard to get
there. MATT: And I saw you post some of
these stats. AUDIENCE: Yes. It was the post
with the most comments we have ever had.
MATT: I believe you’re saying that every user of the classic
plugin is not using Gutenberg. AUDIENCE: No. We did research in
our audience and asked them, what are you using, classic or
the block editor? And half of them answered we use
the Classic Editor. MATT: Ah, so, more of a survey.
AUDIENCE: I know surveys aren’t all — but it shows that a lot
of people aren’t using it. MATT: We have about — just by
the numbers — we think like I said almost three time as many
are using Gutenberg than not. We think only 25% are kind of
use the Classic Editor of people who
have updated. And mom some are not using the Classic Editor all
the time. It’s 25% or below. I think the way to get people on
is first improving Gutenberg. There’s been so many changes if
you’re one of the people not on Gutenberg yet, it’s a okay.
We’re still making it better. But I would encourage you to
take every two or three months, every major WordPress release,
try it out again and see if the things that frustrated you have
been addressed. Two, I think it’s blocks. So, you notice how on that Tweet
Hannah talked about I really want this cover block. I do believe that block-first
adoption will really help things. And so, as, for example, in
Yoast, if — just making these up — say
you had a cool new feature that was Gutenberg-only, that would
be a great reason for people to upgrade. I say that knowing that y’all
have done as much to contribute as anyone in the world. A quick
round of applause. Pound for pound, Yoast gives
more back than almost anyone. [ Applause ]
As CEO, I know a lot of that’s due to you. So, thank you.
AUDIENCE: Thank you. MATT: I think that’s what is
going to drive it along. But also let’s recognize that we’re only a year in. We’ve got 75%, the last 25% will
be like a parabolic curve. We still have 10% on versions prior
to 5.6 of PHP. So, I do think that will kind of
asymptomatically approach like 85, 90%. And that’s the point
when as plugin developers that you can focus on Gutenberg-first
for everything. AUDIENCE: I just hope you’re
right. MATT: I would be very surprised.
We will check it next year. Update the stats. I will be surprised if not 90%
or more of posts going into WordPress next year were
Gutenberg. We’ve got a lot of work to do.
AUDIENCE: Yep. MATT: Think of it coming around
the corner, real-time co-ed iting. That could be a cool feature
making the leap to Gutenberg. And, of course, in Gutenberg,
you can still use the Classic block. You can still have almost
exactly the same interface inside of Gutenberg. There’s
lots of reasons people upgrade. AUDIENCE: Thank you.
MATT: Thank you very much. Over here, check time.
AUDIENCE: Hello, I’m from Serbia. I’m born and raised in communism
and now we try to survive democracy.
[ Laughter ] MATT: Me to too, the second
part. AUDIENCE: So, looking at open
source project, the idea to me is
closer to communism, but I wouldn’t advise applying that. But also, democracy doesn’t
work. So, I’m thinking — yeah. So, my question is: Looking at WordPress, I don’t see any
system there. And I wonder when will we see
some — something that we can identify
as a system for making plans, making decisions? What are the
names? Something like that. MATT: That’s a good question.
[ Applause ] I’ll take at face value all your
value statements of different political systems and say that
WordPress is different and maybe none of the political analogies
directly apply because it is software. And so —
AUDIENCE: There are other open source projects that have some kind of
system. MATT: Yeah.
AUDIENCE: It works. MATT: I think we should call
what we do the WordPress system. AUDIENCE: Okay. When will we see it?
MATT: I know the WP Governance project fizzled out, but they
kind of documented how decisions get made, the team structures
for doing so. The good news is that, you know,
basic basically everything except, you know, like choosing
the jazz name for a release happens in a Slack or P2
or GitHub or Track channel somewhere. There’s a contributor
to WordPress who I was talking with, and they were like, ah,
what happened? The about page got made in like this secret
process and I wanted to be part of it and didn’t realize that
happened on track. Everything you see is the open process. So,
there’s a lot of transparency. So, for actual organizational
structure, I think it’s changed in the past, it will change in
the future depending on who is contribute,
their strengths and weaknesses. And all organizational
structures are a series of tradeoffs. So, what we’re trying
to optimize. So, prior to when I took back over in the lead,
lead role, we would say that for each release, there was a
release lead that had ultimate authority, including over
myself, for what was going on in that release. And the buck
stopped there for everything. And what we were trying to do
there was increase the sort of flexibility that release leads
had. Because we many got ton a space
where releases were more implementtal. And we wanted people to feel the
autonomy to do bigger things. I would think of that as an outfit
that you try on for different outcomes that you’re looking
for. And organizational structures, we try different
things for different parts of WordPress. The key for
everything we do will be the transparency and the open
source. The product — just like the film was creative commons.
It’s so cool that whatever we create as a community is
available to the community as well. Thank you so much.
AUDIENCE: Thank you. [ Applause ]
MATT: We needed — if you have any good words for that too, what is kind
of a transparent duocracy. All of these words have tradeoffs.
AUDIENCE: Hi, Paul Wilson, I’m from Hawaii. I actually came
here on another conference. But I think most of your
Southern California Automattic employees were on my same plane
and I learned about this WordCamp so I jumped over to
here. [ Laughter ] [ Applause ] But I teach digital
entrepreneurship at a university in Hawaii. And WordPress historically has
been the main thing that we go to. And so, I have two questions
that deal with that in particularly. First is the
bullet point, I want to make sure I got it right from
your presentation, implementing full site editing. That kind of
slipped in there at the end. And I feel that’s what’s really been eating at WordPress’ market
share is you have Wix, Weebly that the
students are gravitating more because they like the
customization of being able to edit full-site without being
restricted to themes. And so, my question on that one
is we’ve seen acquisitions in the past such as WooCommerce where you brought
them in. And we see tools like Divvy,
Elementor, Page Layer that already have all that have in
place. Is that something that you guys would consider to help
make it more pettive and make it more realistic for people that
are just getting started where they can customize without
having to be locked in theme-wise?
MATT: Totally. So, a good way to look at it. There is probably at
least 25 that I looked at of these page builders
that would each have its own data
model, each way of doing things for solving this problem that
you said. So, part of why we’re starting Gutenberg was to
provide them kind of like a common rails. That they could
all build on top of. So, page builders I don’t think are going
anywhere. But they won’t need to reinvent the wheel. The basics, like the core CMS
stuff, that will now be handled inside of Gutenberg. They can
build on top that have and create lots of cool things
outside of there. The full-site editing is basically the
realization of the original promise of Gutenberg. What we
wanted to do was essentially flatten WordPress. Take all
these different concepts that you would learn in different
places around WordPress and make them all blocks. So, you could
learn a block once and you can do that anywhere. And what we’re doing in — with
the customization phase is breaking out of post box. Right now all the blocks we
showed by default, you can have that in post and pages, you can
have that in headers, footers, sidebars, whatever.
There’s more that need to be done. Navigation block is still
not finished. It’s a very complex interaction.
But certainly by this time next year and hopefully in the early
part of next year, we’ll have it to your students and yourself
will be able to take — like I said, use any site on the web
and just using some blocks, maybe the Twenty Twenty theme, be able to
re-create that. That’s 100% where we’re going
fop. I don’t think we’re inquiring any of the plugins. But they can move faster and
work together mores? Which can we hear users say. Choosing one
of these is like lock yourself into a particular way of doing
things. If you use a theme, you can
still be locked in. This is a user-centric model of being able
to solve this problem for the entire WordPress ecosystem. We have a lot of people waiting
— AUDIENCE: It’s not a quick
question. Thank you for your time. All right.
MATT: Hello. AUDIENCE: Michel from WP coffee
talk. I would like to lighten this up for a quick second and
ask a fun question. What’s the biggest mistake you’ve ever made
with WordPress and what did you learn from it and and what’s
your proudest WordPress moment?
MATT: The biggest mistake is a longer story. But there was a hot nacho
episode is what it was referred to. Hopefully most people in the
room haven’t heard of it. But a few people have. But super early
on with WordPress. It was basically completely unfunded.
I was running out of money, we hired a designer to design the logo,
Jason Santa Mia who did the logo that we use. And it was before we did the WP
Admin. Someone paid me to put these links on the website. They
were totally Spammy. But it was before web Spam was a thing. And also, might have
inadvertently like — didn’t invent invent — but
certainly popularized a way to hide content using CSS that
Google was not yet aware of. And so, that was definitely the
worst thing I’ve done to WordPress and
the web. [ Laughter ] My initial penance for that was
creating the Kis the Akismet. To fight
Spam. But hopefully the 15 years of WordPress following that. And what — you know, I get
incredibly proud every time we come together for these
WordCamps, US, Europe. And last year, having 5.0 ship and being
able to talk about it and see how the community came together.
And, I mean, that really was the biggest change we made in our
16-year history. And this idea of going from kind of a document
model to a block model of editing is — it’s impossible
to overstate how important that is to the future of WordPress. So, seeing how that came
together and how we iterated in public. All that happened,
that’s definitely one of my proudest WordPress moments.
AUDIENCE: Thank you. MATT: Thank you.
[ Applause ] AUDIENCE: Hi, Matt, my name is
Wolf Bishop with WPtop hat. I live in
southeast Missouri. I’m going to screw up the turn
that she tried to set up with a bit more
of a controversial subject. MATT: Okay.
AUDIENCE: One of the greatest things about WordPress is the
fact that it’s released under the GPL. We can use,
redistribute, change plugins, themes, anything that’s released under that license as
much as we want for free or profit. We love that. This is
brought about a growing trend of companies known as GPL
clubs. Which redistribute plugins either free or for
profit. And there’s a lot of controversy in the community
about this. Some people are absolutely for it and others are
definitely against it. And this kind of attitude is
mixed between both developers as well as end users. I’ve spoke
ton developers who support it, developers who are against it,
same with end users. I think the community might like to know
what is your official or unofficial opinion about these
types of companies. MATT: Sure. First and foremost,
I’ll say, it’s allowed by the license. So, it’s something that is —
I’m aware of like that’s the license. When we create GPL software it
be it’s exitly with that freedom. And we couldn’t prevent folks
like that from doing it without taking the freedoms away from
other folk in the room. It’s an uncomfortable, almost
like the first amendment in the bill of rights. Sometimes it’s
uncomfortable, but it’s really, really, really important. My
personal view on it is that the customer there is will get what
they paid for. Yes, they will get a hundred plugins. One, it’s weird to pay for that
in the first place at us prices. But they’re not supporting the developers, they’re not
supporting Five for the Future by voting with
their wallet and the software they use. I now pay for stuff I
don’t need to pay for. Donations or Patreons or stuff like that
because I want to see more of it in the world. How you spend
where are money and just as important as how you spend your
time and any other resource. You’re supporting a certain
world view. You’re gonna encourage more of whatever
you’re paying for to happen. So, if you’re seeing companies, like
some of the ones we’ve mentioned today that are giving a lot back
to WordPress, doing a GPL, creating good user experiences,
supporting Gutenberg, all that sort of stuff, even if you don’t need to, pick up their yearly
license and think of that as a way of
supporting more of what you want to see in the world. For the
companies taking a lot of people’s work and not giving
much back, either it’s the core things or
— choose not to spend money there.
AUDIENCE: Great. Thank you. [ Applause ]
MATT: Thank you. AUDIENCE: Good afternoon. My
name is Olivia. And I’m from Miami, Florida. Obviously, I think it’s safe to
say that I’m from a different generation from most of the
people in the room. So, my — my question to you is
how do you think WordPress or — how
do you think WordPress is gonna be
adopted by the next generation of kids in K-12 schools? Or how do you think you’re gonna change WordPress so that way
kids and kids K-12 schools will want to
learn WordPress and will want to join
the local WordPress meetups like how they join robotics and
different things? Thank you. [ Applause ]
MATT: Well, first, thank you. I believe, Olivia, you were one of
the speakers at this WordCamp, right?
AUDIENCE: Yeah. MATT: Very modest.
[ Applause ] So, the example that you’re
setting is something that inspires. So, this is gonna be on YouTube
later. And boys and girls, maybe of your generation, will see you
here. Asking a question. Being a speaker at WordCamp. In front of
a thousand adults. And you know, it’s kind of beautiful. When I
got started with WordPress, I was 19. And you know the old
comic in the New Yorker on the Internet, no one knows you’re a
dog. I would think, like, it’s great. On the Internet, no one
knows that I’m a 19-year-old kid in Houston who doesn’t have a comp sci degree and is
learning code. People just were looking at the code I was
creating and we started working together and were able to create
something that became a community, became a product that
powers a lot of the web. And I’m still excited to work on every
single day when I wake up. So, those examples being out there
I think really helped. Hero press stores, probably need some more younger folks or hero
Press. Getting that out there. Kids camps I think will help.
And finally, we need to — this isn’t finally — we need to make
WordPress easier and more accessible. That will help with
younger generations as well as older generations. And the last plug I’ll putt in
there is something that happened this year, Automattic, which is
my company, bought Tumblr. We announced that we’re gonna
switch all that to WordPress. So there’s gonna be a half
billion more WordPressers in the world. And Tumblr definitely has
a younger audience on it as the primary user base. And so, I’m very, very excited,
probably not the first year, but probably the second or third
year. As those become WordPress on the backend, Tumblr.com can be
talking to the WordPress API and a different user interface. And those folks, much like
before WordPress, learning to code CSS
from MySpace and things like that. Going where there’s youth
already. And it’s a fun site as well. And the customization and
the path would allow them to being WordPress and maybe
graduate to being someone as cool as you talking at WordCamps
someday. Thank you so much. AUDIENCE: Thank you.
[ Applause ] AUDIENCE: Hi, Matt. Becky Davis
from Chicago. And I have been doing this a
long time. I have sites that are out there that are six and seven and eight
years old and I’m still maintaining them and they have
thousands and thousands and thousands of posts in multiple
languages. And you want me to switch over to Gutenberg? Are
you kidding me? So — MATT: I do, but you don’t have
to. AUDIENCE: So, my real question
is, I’ve heard rumors that the Classic Editor is going to die
in the future. Please tell me that’s not true. MATT: Why didn’t we officially
announce for a Classic Editor? 2022?
AUDIENCE: Yeah, that’s not cool. MATT: Well, there’s a lot gonna
change between now and 2022, in the world in general. I think
we’ll all be like doing WordCamp on holograms or
something. So, I think it went from Gutenberg release, we said
four or five years, that we announced at that point that we
are going to continue maintaining the Classic Editor
plugin. In reality, in open source, when things have usage,
it gets maintained. And so, if Classic Editor still has a
couple million users by 2022, guess what? It’s going to keep
going and guess what? We’re going still work on it opinion
if it makes you feel any better. We don’t want to promise that.
That doesn’t encourage — people start to doubt. Hopefully the sites that are six
or seven years old, as you update
them, maybe bring them to Gutenberg. Or something their
users or you as a developer want to bring in. WordPress is there, 16 and 17
years old. And it’s been kind of fun to go back and see things I used to have to
custom code or have a lot of HTML and custom CSS I can now
re-create in Gutenberg. It’s a little bit of work. But it’s
kind of interesting and I learn as I do it. And I know it’s
going to be forward-compatible. Because Gutenberg is 100% the
future of WordPress. Ask me 20 year from now, is
there a Classic Editor? I hope not, but only because no
one wants to use it. Sometime in between there, the usage will dwindle to the point where
it’s a niche plugin or not officially supported. It’s still
open source. That still means people are able
to customize any way they like. There’s people that only post to
WordPress using a command line. That’s an example of niche
things that are actively supported and maintained. But I do appreciate if at some
point in the future you take a look at Gutenberg again and try
it out. AUDIENCE: I’m trying to play
with it on new projects. But on projects with thousands of
pages, how do I transfer that? There’s no script for that?
MATT: We should make a script for that then.
[ Applause ] Thank you. All right. We’ll do
the last couple. Maybe two or three.
AUDIENCE: What’s up, Matt? MATT: Hey!
AUDIENCE: My name is Christie. And I have a question for you.
You are a CEO. So, you know. Or, you have consultants that
know that a key component of any successful project or
organization is good stakeholder management. So, this idea that
in any group we have a ton of people and a lot of the time,
most of the time, they have competing interesting. If we
have buyers and sellers, the buyer wants to get the most
money, the seller wants to get the most money and we have to find a place in
between. I think we could argue that the WordPress open source
project has even more stakeholders than the
traditional corporate structure that has shareholders. I’m curious what we’re doing in
2020 and beyond to bring all of the different people with
different motivations together in the WordPress project to work
towards a common goal. The questions that we see here
demonstrate — I will probably list about seven different kinds
of stakeholders, yeah. With different motivations, different
incentives, different things they want to see. How do we get
everybody working towards that same goal of what we saw in the
video? Which is making the project and the world a better
place? MATT: That is a good question. And I am so relieveed you
defined what a stakeholder in management was. Because from — man, I’m a
terrible CEO. I have no idea what she means by
that. AUDIENCE: You got too thank
Andrew for that one. He texted me and said, what’s
your question? I said it, he said you got to
define stakeholder management. MATT: Thanks, Andy. So, maybe
I’m not the most corporate CEO ever. In terms of — but I do think
about that problem quite a bit. Which is there are so many
people with different types of interests,
different incentives, different
motivations, different things important to them. Special
interests within WordPress. And, you know, it can be cacophonuos, all the voices in
the room. It’s part what have makes WordPress exciting. Those
voices occasionally come together and create like a
chorus where we can all go in the same direction. We’re not
going to make everyone happy and not everyone is going to agree
with all of our decisions. There’s a lot of things I
presented today that people agree with or say would be bad
for the web, bad for our goals. But we put the philosophy out
there, the web we want to see and the things core to us.
Things like transparency and open source. And say if those
are also important to you, you know, get on the bus and we’ll
take this journey together. If not, guess what? It’s open
source. So, you can still — you can
create Evil Press X or something?
AUDIENCE: I can? MATT: Sure. You can fork it,
take the code, not fork it. You can use it for whatever purpose
you would like. You’re not forced, but if you want to be
part of this what I would term more the community of people
contributing to WordPress, we do have to think about how we
present things. So, it’s State of the Word, but it’s also what
happens in meetups, what goes on the blog, what gets translated
into the 50 plus languages that WordPress is translated into. It very much is a global and multi-factorial problem that is
part of the fun of it. It’s — I was listening to a —
I think it was a podcast with — who is
the guy that does the documentaries like
Vietnam, jazz? Ken Burns. The one with the awesome effect. How awesome he has an effect
built into iMovie. To be a director and have your name on
an effect. He was talking about they have a neon sign in their
editing room. I’m gonna butcher it. But I think it said, it’s
complex. But every — he covers these really interesting, rich
stories. And for everything there is kind
of a surface story. The kind of Tweet version you can say about what happened in, gosh,
something like the Civil War or Music
Called Jazz. But the reality is it’s really, really complex. And
I tryied — I thought about getting a neon thing that said
that for my office after the podcast. I think it was the
podcast with Tim Ferriss if you want to check that auto. So,
thank you for your question. AUDIENCE: Thank you.
MATT: All right. Next to last. AUDIENCE: Hey, Matt, I’m Jeremy
Ward, a senior backend engineer with
WebDevStudio. And I was excited about and
aware of the decision to upgrate upgrade
the minimum version of PHP. 83%? MATT: 83% of people on WordPress
5.2 are running PHP 7 or higher. AUDIENCE: That’s awesome. The
goal for this year was to get the minimum version of WordPress
on to 7 +. And, of course, I think it’s
next month that security updates for 7.1 end. I’m just wondering if you can
talk about the 10%, the laggards still on the old versions and
the conversations you are planning on having with web
hosts to get them up to date to push everything forward.
MATT: Sure. One common bit of info that a
lot of people don’t know, is that web hosts running older
versions of PHP, that the PHP project itself was no longer
officially supporting were still getting backported security
fixes. Usually from third- third-party
companies they would subscribe to. Even though 7.0 is no longer
supported bit project, it’s like when we say, they
don’t to want deal with it. They want to focus on the new thing.
And they’re subscribed to services, they will have PHP
security updates. It’s not end of lifed as the PHP
project would like you to feel. In terms of what we need to do
to pick up those old people, not old people, people on old
version versions of — I made a generational mistake
there. People on old versions of PHP is we had to work with the
host. It’s really something where, you know, apart from a
small hand full that might be running like servers in their
closet and on their home connection, pretty much everyone
runs WordPress on a web host. On a server image, on, you know,
the great web host is that sponsor WordCamps. And so, one
thing we’re looking to start doing is start identifying
which host or have those older
versions and talk too them. They might not know they have
half a million WordPress on PHP 7. If
we can expose that and offer the best practices of what folks do
to upgrade. This is an area where I have
seen direct competitors, heavenning
each other out. Bluehost did some amazing stuff there. We can
bring these folks along. But it’s not the end user that
probably needs to hear at this point. They have been seeing the
notices and everything for a while now. We need to start working with
wherever they’re paying to host their website.
AUDIENCE: Great. Thank you. MATT: We’re going to end on this
one, I know there’s more questions, for folks who didn’t
get to it, come up afterwards, I’m happy to talk to you. The
Lyst question last question. You were the celebrity on the
video? AUDIENCE: Now I want to hide,
it’s a bit embarrassing. I’m the community manager at
SiteGround and right now the release coordinator for
WordPress 5.3. And — MATT: Woohoo! [ Applause ] November 12th,
right? AUDIENCE: November 12th, I’m
just a shouty, bossy lady. Everyone else is doing the work.
But one thing that I do — MATT: Not bossy, you have
executive management skills. AUDIENCE: Me, thank you. I’m
also a good listener. So, one thing that came up over
this past few months in conversations
with many different people involved in the release is that they feel it
will be great to have a calendar of
releases, a year-long calendar of releases. So, how do you feel about having
a calendar for 2020 for the next — because you said yourself,
three releases at best every year. So, how do you feel about
having a calendar for 20 for Twenty
Twenty? MATT: This is a good one to end
on. Let’s do it! AUDIENCE: Yes, yes!
MATT: Thank you. There’s no reason not to. We do a version
of that early in the year. So, we might as well map it out. As
long as people realize that those dates might move. In the
New Yorker, when they say the going on is about, musicians
lead complicated lives. Developers lead complicated
lives. AUDIENCE: It depends whose
bossing them around. MATT: Oooo… maybe the releases you lead, it
will be super on time. AUDIENCE: Who knows? You have
10 days to see. MATT: And the places we have had
that, and had it in the past, we just
failed at updating it, slash
about/roadmap. The previous releases, and the jazzers, and
the updating ones. But we fell behind there. Fix that up at
contributor day. That will be done. As we wrap up, just very
quickly, I would love to invite all the
organizers for WordCamp US this year to the stage really quick. So, if you were involveed in
organizing, doing something, come on up, quickly, quickly.
[ Applause ] Maybe not too quickly. We did — it was at WordCamp —
we did have an injury when the organizers were coming up at a
previous one. So, come up carefully. Come on, come on,
come on. Keep coming, keep coming. All right. Wait for
everyone to get here. Oh, coming from this side too. Okay. Oh, my
goodness. Look at this. Look at this. Is this the 47 that we talked
about earlier? I’m glad we had the ramp. That’s awesome. All
right. We’re missing one. But — so, can we do a quick round of
applause for putting this together? Thank you so much. [ Applause ] And, all right. Let’s go. Thank you all so much for an
amazing State of the Word. I’ll see you next year. [ Applause ]

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