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The Magic of Cooperation Between ‘Competitors’

Years ago, my friend Josh Strebel gave a talk titled “Cooperation over Competition” and it resonated deeply with me.  In fact, some of my first and best friends in WordPress were my “competitors.” (Hey Brian and Jason!) I’m very thankful that connection, cooperation and collaboration is already happening every day here in Slack, through DMs, in public, private channels and beyond. It’s…

Tom Willmot on the Challenges and Opportunities Facing Enterprise WordPress — Post Status Draft 130
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Tom Willmot on the Challenges and Opportunities Facing Enterprise WordPress — Post Status Draft 130

Sparked by Magne Ilsaas‘s ideas in The WordPress Enterprise Paradox, Tom started a Twitter thread and hosted a live discussion with Magne and others at enterprise WordPress agencies this week. Their main concern is the challenges that arise from not having a well-defined brand and market that allows “WordPress for the Enterprise” to stand out — without being ties to a particular WordPress company or host. After getting an outline of the problem as it stands today, I asked Tom what might help differentiate “Enterprise WordPress” as a collective or entire ecosystem of agencies operating within it. Can open-source values of sharing and cooperation shape a unique global identity for enterprise WordPress agencies? Is it time for an inter-agency association or “guild” to take on these challenges?

Learning and Pulling Together
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Learning and Pulling Together

This week was all about revisiting and continuing conversations that have special value and maybe for that reason tend to continue on with a life of their own. Tom Willmot dropped a fine Twitter thread about the challenge all enterprise WordPress agencies face. This came in response to Magne Ilsas‘ featured post here last week, The WordPress Enterprise Paradox. In a similar theme of industry peer cooperation, Eric Karkovack asks if WordPress product owners and developers can see a common interest in “voluntary standards.” Could this clean up the plugin market? James Farmer thinks the WordPress business community can do more for itself too — by sharing data. In Post Status Slack we’re learning the tricks and trials of ranking in the WordPress.org plugin repository. How about plugin telemetry? Learn from the voices of experience.

Who’s Going to Pay for All This?
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Who’s Going to Pay for All This?

Magne Ilsaas wants WordPress to be more than the pragmatic choice for enterprise clients. He wants WordPress agencies to be known for a distinct WordPress culture and mindset. Alain Schlesser, Carole Olinger, Carl Alexander, and Zach Stepek have a frank talk with Bob Dunn about the costs of not supporting WordPress contributors. Post Status members including Dave Loodts, Marius Jensen, Jeremy Ward, and Chris Reynolds discuss the looming PHP 7.4 EOL. Plus Jb Audras‘ breakdown of contributions to the WordPress 6.1 release. For your weekend reading, some news and insights from business, workplace, webtech, and govtech writers beyond the WordPress bubble.

The WordPress Enterprise Paradox
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The WordPress Enterprise Paradox

“WordPress as a platform is putting us on the enterprise path. But what got us here is what makes us irrelevant,” says Magne Ilsaas, CEO and Founding Partner of Dekode. Magne wants to start an overdue conversation about three big risks — and opportunities — for WordPress agencies: 1) A lack of spaces for professional conversations and knowledge-sharing, including professional events, meetups, and mastermind groups catering to enterprise WordPress. 2) Successful agencies that use WordPress extensively with little or no community involvement whose work would benefit from enterprise WordPress peer networks. 3) An over-emphasis in WordPress agencies on short-term engineering solutions to the exclusion of long-term business solutions. What’s often left out is design, user experience, and most of all the capacity to play a strategic advisory role in partnership with clients.

Moving and Not Moving With the Crowd
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Moving and Not Moving With the Crowd

This week’s WordPress business highlights for Post Status: Lesley Sim is pivoting Newsletter Glue to an upmarket clientele. A discussion starter about WordPress UX. Do we need a curated plugin ecosystem, more open standards, and easy access to current expert consensus points in key knowledge areas? Time to bail out of Twitter? PayPal? Katie Keith tells her HeroPress story.

Post Status Excerpt (No. 72) — Can We Get to “Yes” on Better UX?
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Post Status Excerpt (No. 72) — Can We Get to “Yes” on Better UX?

This week in an article shared in Post Status Slack, Eric Karkovack suggested some ways to improve the WordPress user experience, especially for DIY users setting up a website for the first time. Some of the things Eric wants to see happen, like a standard interface for plugins and a curated view of the plugin ecosystem, are also commonly expressed by designers, developers, and people in other roles at WordPress agencies serving enterprise clients. Can we get everyone to “yes” on a better UX?

A Visit from the Good Idea Fairy
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A Visit from the Good Idea Fairy

Building, Supporting, and Selling a Winning Product — With or Without WordPress.org • Are Active Install Counts Relevant to Your Business’s Success? (Even if they are accurate? And they haven’t been.) • Let’s Fix What’s Broken (The Plugin Repo) Not What Isn’t (The Freemium Model) • Follow Leaders, Adopt Standards • Tools and expertise from rtCamp • Some great and “doable” ideas for the future of plugin business metrics on the .org repo. Could some of them help put an end to intrusive and manipulative dark patterns in the WordPress Admin dashboard and notifications?

Post Status Excerpt (No. 71) — Building, Supporting, and Selling a Winning Product — With or Without WordPress.org
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Post Status Excerpt (No. 71) — Building, Supporting, and Selling a Winning Product — With or Without WordPress.org

This week I sat down again with Eric Karkovack to talk about the WordPress stories and topics that are on the top of our minds. Independently, we made nearly the same selections. There’s a single throughline in this episode — what works, what doesn’t, and what will take WordPress businesses forward in the product, agency, and hosting spaces.

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