WordPress News: Weblog Tools Collection Scholarship Fund, WordPress at the Supreme Court, Top Plugin Authors, XML-RPC Trouble, and More

Filed as Features on January 2, 2009 10:02 pm

WordPress 2.7 downloads now passing 800,000. WordPress goes to the Supreme Court. Weblog Tools Collection announces college scholarship fund for WordPress students. WordPress 2.7 problems with XML-RPC. WordPress.com annual wrap up features dramatic statistics and features. Analysis of top WordPress Plugin authors in the WordPress Plugin Directory – who is on top? Chicago Breast Cancer Marathon call for WordPress men to march. And more WordPress news, security information, Plugins, Themes, and tips.

WordPress News

WordPress Men Called to Marathon for Breast Cancer: Brian Gardner is calling on Chicago/Midwest WordPress male fans to join him August 7-9, 2009, for the 60-mile marathon for the Chicago Breast Cancer event. He claims it will be a great journey talking WordPress and blogging non-stop.

WordPress Goes to the Suppreme Court: The community blog of Londonderry NH.net, in Londonderry, New Hampshire, used their WordPress blog in defense of their case on school funding before the Supreme Court of New Hampshire and the Senate. According to Steve Young of Londonderry NY.net, when asked about sharing some WordPress history, he said:

For us it was the fact that it could make history in the way we used it. April 30th, 2005, was our first use of WordPress and [first] post. Using it to blog about school funding in New Hampshire, we published anything and everything on school funding. We ended up in Supreme Court and won. Our attorney told us, in part because they were able to use the data to hold the politicians accountable for the things they had said.

would be proud as it speaks to his favorite subjects: freedom of speech and WordPress.

Problems with WordPress 2.7 XML-RPC: Joseph Scott reports on problems with libxml2 For WordPress XML-RPC users that he’s been finding on the and elsewhere. The problem is not WordPress specific, but the PHP XML extension using the new versions of libxml2 which leaves off angle brackets. The solution so far is to use old versions of libxml2 known to work or build the PHP XML model against the expat parser instead of libsml2. Check the forums and his post for updated information, as well as the Trac ticket on the issue.

One Million Downloads of WordPress 2.7: Two weeks ago, there were 500,000 WordPress 2.7 Downloads and Miroslav Glavic caught the rollover of the counter. As I write this, there are now over 800,000 downloads, moving fast for 1 million. Bets are on Twitter as to when one million downloads will be counted on the counter. There is now the WordPress Download Counter which adds a counter to your blog’s sidebar featuring the number of official WordPress version downloads from the WordPress Download Counter for WordPress fan blogs.

Weblog Tools Collection WordPress Plugin Competition and Now Scholarship: For several years, hosts one of the most popular WordPress Plugin Competitions in the world, with some of the winners becoming the most popular Plugins around the community. Plans are underway to make this year’s contest even bigger than before, but they want to do more. Mark Ghosh announced plans for a Weblog Tools Collection College Scholarship to promote “WordPress development and help students dip their toe in WordPress.” More news on this exciting educational program soon.

Using a Symbian S60? The Wordmobi: WordPress Client now allows blogging with WordPress on a Symbian S60. Python required.

WordPress Theme Intruder Reported: A lot of people are reporting notifications from their web hosts regarding the remv.php file creating malicious behavior on your WordPress blog. Jason Cosper offers a good step-by-step tutorial and Ronald Davies has a video tutorial on how to remove this malicious file from your WordPress Theme folder. After removal of the file from your server via FTP, update your site immediately to WordPress 2.7. For more information, see these discussions on the WordPress Support Forums: Blog hacked, host said to upgrade and WTF is remv.php in wp-content/themes folder.

Weblog Tools Collection Changes Ad Policy to Favor GPL Themes and Plugins: Always a leader in the WordPress Community when it comes to taking the moral high ground. announces it will no longer accept ads from advertisers promoting non-GPL WordPress Themes and Plugins. According to owner, Mark Ghosh:

We have made some changes to the advertiser requirements on this blog, much of which drastically reduces our revenue. We now require that all our advertisers who want to promote WordPress plugins and themes, release their themes and plugins under the GPL or a GPL compatible license to be eligible to advertise on Weblog Tools Collection and related properties. Existing ads will be forced to expire and will not be renewed. We will also not link to any work from Premium Theme and Plugin authors that do not release their themes and/or plugins under a GPL or compatible license.

Getting Your WordPress Blog into Google News: WPEngineer offers Google News To Release With WordPress, a tutorial on how to create a sitemap for automatic inclusion of your site in Google News. You must request inclusion in Google News in order to be included, but if you are accepted, this tutorial will help you modify your WordPress blog for inclusion.

Haven’t You Upgraded to WordPress 2.7 Yet? For information on upgrading to WordPress 2.7, see WordPress 2.7 Release News and Links. If you are worried about whether or not WordPress 2.7 will work with your server, Themes or Plugins, see:

The Ghosts of WordPress Past: Ozh released “A Journey Through Five Years of WordPress Interface” and Peter Westwood brought back memories with “Useless graphs (What went before),” each showing us their view on the history of WordPress.

Fake WordPress Malicious Site: Look out for a fake WordPress site. Wordpresz.org looks like the site but isn’t. The version of WordPress you download has malicious code in the download that opens a backdoor to your blog. If you upgraded WordPress to 2.6.4, you are running a fake version. There is no WordPress 2.6.4. The latest version is WordPress 2.7, and in the 2.6 line, it is 2.6.5, skipping 2.6.4 due to this threat.

Don’t Let WordPress in Your Domain Name: Do you use “wordpress” in your blog’s domain name? This is in violation of the WordPress trademark. If you find a site using WordPress in their domain name, remind them of the trademark rules so they won’t be asked later to remove it.

The WordPress Podcast: Episode 49: WordPress 2.7 released, Oxite, Blog World Expo and New Media Expo to merge, Pownce closes includes David Peralty and covers WordPress 2.7, Microsoft’s new open source blogware, Oxite, Blog World Expo and New Media Expo merging, WordPress Theme Directory cleaning out WordPress Themes, Pownce shut down, WordCamp news, and more WordPress news and tips.

WordCast Podcast: The last two episodes of the year are WordCast 39: Longer than a list of Madonna’s ex-boyfriends and WordCast 40: And a happy new year!. In the first episode, Jonathan Bailey joins the crew to talk about WordPress 2.7, global Gravatars integrated into WordPress.com, and more WordPress news.

WordPress Weekly Podcast: Last week’s episode with Matt Mullenweg has been mostly transcribed. This week’s episode, WordPress Gone Social – BuddyPress, featured Andy Pealty of the BuddyPress project for , and more WordPress news and tips.

Last Week’s WordPress Wednesday News: Can’t get enough WordPress news and tips? There is so much news coming out about the latest version, so you can catch up with the past news in last week’s WordPress News: 650,000 WP 2.7 Downloads, BuddyPress, Theme Threat, Schwag, and More.

WordPress on Your Calendar

WordPress Events CalendarWordPress Meetup or WordCamp Near You? If you are putting together a WordPress event, please email me so I can publicize it here. If there is a WordCamp near you, go. If you are interested in setting up a WordCamp, stay tuned for news and information on to bring a WordCamp event near you.

Here are some WordPress-related dates and events to put on your calendar.

Upcoming WordCamps not scheduled or confirmed:

Upcoming WordCamp and WordPress Event News

Dubai WordPress Meetup: The first Dubai WordPress Meetup was Friday, January 2, 2009, at the Montgomery Golf Course, as part of Matt Mullenweg’s visit there. There was a quickly created Event page on Facebook. Hopefully, this will turn into a monthly event gathering of WordPress fans and experts in the Dubai area.

WordCamp Las Vegas on a Roll: WordCamp Las Vegas is next week and is filling up fast. Participants are urged to submit their Twitter ID so everyone can track each other during the event. The Hashtag and tag for WordCamp Las Vegas is #wordcamplv. Also check out the WordCamp after party for any WordPress fans in the area at Jack’s Irish Pub inside of Palace Station. RSVP for the after party event on Facebook.

WordCamp Las Vegas

WordCamp Whistler – Geeks Ski! WordCamp Whistler is only a couple weeks away, the first ever ski and WordPress event. As the event grows near, WordCamp Whistler planners have announced there are still sponsorship spots available. The list of speakers is great and registration is going fast for this limited seating event. They’ve planned photo walks and skiing events along with the WordPress fun.

WordCamp Whistler

Learn the Lessons of Content Publishing: New York WordPress Meetup Group will meetin on January 20, 2009, with the meeting topic to be “WordPress as a CMS: The Strategy of Content Publishing.”

WordCamp Mid-Atlantic: The University of Baltimore Thumel Business Center has been set for the first ever WordCamp Mid-Atlantic covering Washington, D.C., Baltimore and Philadelphia areas on May 16, 2009. You can register now at their WordCamp Mid-Atlantic Facebook.

Chicago WordPress Meetup: The Chicago WordPress January Meetup on January 24, 2009, will feature a Q&A session on “Who uses WordPress” with everyone invited to share why they use WordPress.

Attention WordPress Lovers in New Jersey: The new The New Jersey WordPress Meetup Group will be meeting January 7, 2009, in Belmar, New Jersey, at 7PM at the WebDevStudios.com office. Get help with WordPress, upgrading to WordPress 2.7, and learn about exciting WordPress Plugins and what’s going on in Jersey with WordPress.

WordCampED: WordCamp Education Vancouver 2009 is scheduled in Vancouver, BC, for February 19, 2009, on the UBC Main Campus in the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre. They are currently looking for speakers and those interested in attending this educational based WordPress event.

WordCamp Columbus, Ohio: WordCamp Columbus is set for May 16, 2009. The Twitter account is @WordCampColumbus. WordCamp Columbus has announced that since WordCamp Mid-Atlantic is scheduled for the same date, and Matt Mullenweg will be speaking there, his keynote will be streamed to attendees of WordCamp Columbus so no one will miss the “state of the word” by the founder of WordPress. Noel Jackson, designer of the Monotone WordPress Theme, and Nick Momrick, speaking about WordPress.com, will be noted speakers at the event. Registration is $20 and will be open soon.

WordCamp Columbus

WordCamp San Francisco 2009 Announced: Matt Mullenweg has announced the date for WordCamp San Francisco 2009 for May 30, 2009, at the Mission Bay Conference Center. There is also a Upcoming Event page set up.

WordCamps and WordPress Meetups Everywhere

WordPress Plugins and Themes News

WordPress Plugins DatabaseTop 10 WordPress Plugin Authors: Based upon cumulative downloads, White Shadow offers the Top 10 WordPress Plugin Developers within the WordPress Plugin Directory. It counts the number of downloads across all Plugins authored. The top of the list includes:

Honorable mentions are included, such as Viper007Bond being honored with the most WordPress Plugins on the WordPress Plugin Directory: 25.

Optimize All Those Scripts in WordPress 2.7 Themes and Plugins: WordPress 2.7 now features a lot of AJAX and JavaScript. Ozz offers a technical article on the WordPress Development Blog for optimizing script loading that is a must-read for all WordPress Plugin and Theme developers.

Misaligned Images in Feeds: One of the annoying aspects of feeds is how images are not floated within the content, distorting the way the content should wrap around the images. In Aligning Images In RSS Feeds, White Shadow explains how to fix it with your WordPress blog feed with the RSS Image Align WordPress Plugin.

Check WordPress Theme and Plugin Compatibility with WordPress 2.7: If you are a WordPress Plugin or Theme author, and your Theme or Plugin will work with the new version, there are two things you must do NOW:

  1. Check to see if it is listed in the on WordPress 2.7 Plugin Compatibility and WordPress 2.7 Theme Compatibility. Users will check there before upgrading, so make sure you are on the list.
  2. Go to the WordPress Plugin Directory and other services and sites hosting your Plugin and update the information to show that it is compatible with WordPress 2.7, or not.

Installing WordPressMU EBook: Andrea Rennick of WPMU Tutorials has just published Installing WordPressMU – The E-Book, a guide to helping you install the popular multi-blog version of WordPress called . The book is available in PDF form for free download.

WordPress Functions Implementation History: Along with other looks back at history, Ozh offers the WordPress Functions Implementation History Tool for a look at the changes and options for WordPress functions for coders. It’s important to know when a function is deprecated and introduced so you can maintain Plugins and Themes through the various WordPress versions and also include some backwards compatibility, if available. This has been updated now to include WordPress 2.7.

Interesting WordPress Plugins:

  • Role Manager WordPress Plugin helps to control your various contributors, editors, and users access to different areas of the blog.
  • Drop-in Slideshow WordPress Plugin plays full-frame slideshow of random images from a single folder on your WordPress blog. Images can be set to allow “auto-navigating” to the post or Page linked to the current image.
  • Widgets Reloaded Plugin replaces the default sidebar Widgets with new versions with more control and customization features.
  • Flash Zoom WordPress Plugin allows the display of many videos on your blog’s front page and single post page, allowing the flash video to resize or zoom without changing the source of the flash.

Finding WordPress Plugins: For more WordPress Plugins see the official WordPress Plugin Directory, the WordPress Plugins Database, and Weblog Tools Collection Plugin and Theme announcements.

WordPress.com News

WordPress.com W logoWordPress.com 2009 Year Wrap-Up: The past year has been one of amazing new features and upgrades for bloggers. In 2008 Year-End Wrap-Up, Matt Mullenweg sums up the year listing many of the new features, staff, and changes in the free blog hosting service of WordPress. New features included: new Themes, WordPress iPhone app, new corporate bloggers added to the VIP WordPress.com blog program, WordCamps all over the world, music and video uploads, identicons, captions, Turbo with Google Gears, sticky posts, HTTPS settings for security, polls, and favicons, just to list a few.

Statistics for the free blog hosting service (and VIP program) are impressive and include:

  • 2,906,086 blogs were created
  • 3,761,296 new users joined
  • 35,926,639 file uploads
  • 13.5 terabytes of new files
  • 78,773,011 comments
  • 15.8 billion total pageviews
  • 66% of English language blogs
  • 8% Spanish language blogs
  • 5% Indonesian language blogs
  • 4% Portuguese language blogs
  • 2% Italian language blogs
  • 2% German language blogs

WordPress Techniques and Tips

WordPress Tips on Twitter: I’ve started sharing WordPress Tips I’ve collected over the past couple years on Twitter at @lorelleonwp. I’ll be posting one WordPress tip link every morning (PST) covering recent versions of WordPress and WordPress usages and features. NOTE: December 25 and January 1, I’ll be posting 10 WordPress Tips for each day.

Want Your WordPress Tip Shared Here? If you would like your WordPress tip and technique included in this list, see Tips For Writing Good WordPress Tips and Writing and Publishing Code In Your WordPress Blog Posts. When its ready, contact me at lorelleonwordpress@gmail.com.

WordPress Community News

WordPress Community graphicThings You Need to Know in the WordPress Community:

Past WordPress Wednesday News Reports

WordPress News Sources

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Each week, the features WordPress News, a weekly column by featuring the news around the WordPress Community. If you have a WordPress news item or tip to suggest, please contact her at this special email address: lorelleonwordpress@gmail.com

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  1. By Aaron B. Hockley posted on January 2, 2009 at 11:39 pm
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    I’m not really sure how restricting advertising to GPL-only themes is taking a “moral high ground.” Choosing a commercial or open source license is a business decision, not one of morals. Does this mean the Blog Herald is morally inferior because it allows ads for non-GPL products?

    Reply

    • By Lorelle VanFossen posted on January 7, 2009 at 12:16 am
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      The decision for Weblog Tools Collection owner, Mark Ghosh, was one of moral character and a personal decision. It doesn’t make those Themes bad, nor does it make any site’s ads or value better than another. It does take courage to stand up and say what he did and make the decision he made. As to what it means to him, you’ll have to take that up with him.

      Reply

  2. By Miroslav Glavic posted on January 2, 2009 at 11:39 pm
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    I am so going to get the 1,000,000 screenshot.

    I think I am going to run a WP contest on each version that reaches 500,000 and 1,000,000. Whomever gets closest gets something WP related

    Does the counter reset EVERY time a new version? (2.6.1 then when 2.6.2 comes then it gets resetted or only on 2.5 to 2.6 change?).

    Reply

  3. By GoingLikeSixty posted on January 3, 2009 at 9:25 am
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    I think you should remove your WordPress Indy link. Nothing seems to be happening. They moderate comments and don’t respond to questions. I question their sincerity in getting the camp launched.

    Reply

    Your words are your own, so be nice and helpful if you can. If this is the first time you're posting a comment, it might go into moderation. Don't worry, it's not lost, so there's no need to repost it! We accept clean XHTML in comments, but don't overdo it please.

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