WordPress: The Free Software With a Big Economy & How You Can Get Involved

Over at The Next Web, Joel Falconer’s overview of the WordPress economy touches on many topics we’ve talked about over the years here at Automattic. Amazing to see what happens when software, web, and people meet to create a movement.

Perhaps one of the things Mullenweg can be most proud of is that his platform and the economy that has developed around it sustains the livelihood of probably hundreds of families and thousands of people, drawing on a wide range of talent in a loyal, dedicated community. Between theme developers who sell their products on marketplaces like ThemeForest, companies that make WordPress products and employ support staff, product managers, developers, designers, lawyers, accountants and more, and Automattic itself, the reach is huge.

When open source loyalists say that their philosophy can change the world, you only need to look as far as WordPress to see that mantra in action.

/via The Next Web, h/t ma.tt

Scott Rosenberg on writing in public

Scott is a co-founder of Salon, and this excerpt is from his essay on “Blogging, empowerment, and the ‘adjacent possible.'”

One way to assess the impact of blogging is to say that the number of people who have had the experience of writing in public has skyrocketed over the course of the last decade. Let’s say that, pre-Internet, the universe of people with experience writing in public — journalists, authors, scholars — was, perhaps, 100,000 people. And let’s say that, of the hundreds of millions of blogs reported to date, maybe 10 million of them are sustained enough efforts for us to say that their authors have gained real experience writing in public. I’m pulling these numbers out of a hat, trying to err on the conservative side. We still get an expansion of a hundredfold.

Each of these people now has an entirely new set of ‘adjacent possibilities’ to explore. What they make of those opportunities will shape the next couple of decades in important, and still unpredictable, ways.

The Son of Gutenberg: How WordPress changed the way we publish

“Technology and social media are redrawing the roadmap to authorial success. And for every Justin Halpern, there are 10,000 professional writers wondering how to turn blogs, microblogs, and Twitterfeeds into media empires, especially now that their magazines, newspapers, and media organizations are contracting at an alarming rate. Blogs, of course, are the first refuge for professional writers fleeing the withering establishment media, and for hordes of would-be scribes finding their own voice. For these multitudes, WordPress.com has become the 21st-century equivalent of Gutenberg’s printing press.”

Marion Maneker profiles Automattic for The Big Money in “The Son of Gutenberg: How WordPress changed the way we publish”

Presenting WordPress as CMS at Smash Summit

Last week I gave a talk about the cost and time savings possible when you use WordPress as a content management system (CMS). My presentation was part of the social media tools track at the inaugural Smash Summit marketing conference produced by Dave McClure.

I drew heavily from a great white paper put out by Tierra Innovation, which worked with public broadcaster WNET in New York to build and deploy their WordPress web publishing system.

WNET reported a 4-5X improvement across key measures like time to build, cost to build, and production output after moving to a WordPress-powered CMS.

Continue reading “Presenting WordPress as CMS at Smash Summit”

WordPress 3.0: The 5 Most Important New Features

“WordPress has long been known as a dedicated blogging platform, giving users the tools they need to publish their message and interact with readers. However, with the official release of version 3.0, set to drop this month, the platform will be much closer, if not well within the territory of a content management system (CMS). The list of new features in WordPress 3.0 isn’t very long in comparison to previous releases. However, the changes that are coming will certainly have a significant impact, particularly if you use WordPress as a CMS.”
Brian Casel, “WordPress 3.0: The 5 Most Important New Features”

Getting Ready for WordCamp SF

This Saturday is when WordCamp San Francisco 2010 happens. There’ll be a full day of great WordPress talks at the Mission Bay Conference Center, followed by a party for WordCampers at the Automattic Lounge. I can’t wait to meet folks from the WordPress community this weekend!

Part of the fun in getting ready is seeing the commemorative gear come in – there are boxes upon boxes of WordPress memorabilia, just waiting to find their new homes. Props to Swayspace for the fresh design work this year. If you’re in the Bay Area, you should definitely join us on Saturday.