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Back to work, back to bbPress, back to reality…

  • kevinjohngallagher


    Matt confessed that he dove into bbPress. He admitted that he became a little burnt out on it. bbPress will undoubtedly be tied closer to WordPress. The future of bbPress will be a really awesome plugin. He even admitted that right now, it would be better off to use another plugin rather than bbPress. Matt said he just needs a little more time before he dives into bbPress again. The bbPress community was a bit rough around the edges and the flame war that ensued forced Matt to break away for a bit.

    I appreciate that I come across a bit strong sometimes, and certainly I felt that Matt wasn’t prepared for walking into the bbPress project when he came back last year. Personally, I think its a bit rich to say that the bbPress community “was a bit rough around the edges” given the way Automattic had handled bbPress with contempt for so long (leading to every single person involved in the project leaving – save for 1 forum moderator).

    And as for the “flame war”, and it was probably the most quiet and mannerly flame war in the history of the internet, I think that maybe Matt has become acustomed to people praising the good things he and his company does and not that used to pointing out when they drop the ball (which originally was one of the things that most impressed me about Matt and Automattic).

    (the world’s nicest flame war, where 6 different people ask Matt questions using ugly words like Please, Thank You, and “really hope you had a great time on your travels :)“. Man it almost made me want to quit the total internet it was SUCH a flame war of epic proportions!!!!)

    There’s no doubt in my mind that Matt is a humble positive guy that just wants the best for all of us. He speaks from the heart, and sometimes that can be a double edged sword because people hold him to that. Truly we understand that, but throwing the toys out of the pram in the way he did isn’t conducive to galvanising the community/development of bbPress.

    All of the major issues/setbacks that bbPress has had have been quite obvious long long long before we hit them; and the “Relax, we’ve done this before” line is now seriously coming home to roost. Given the sheer volume of “wordpress integration” questions and “buddyPress” questions on this forum; i fail to see how telling people to not use bbPress is going to do anything to help the community or development of bbPress.

    I said it when Matt came back that if bbPress is going to be a WordPress plugin then there is no point wasting development time rushing out new features that attempt to duplicate features already in WordPress. Its a shocking waste of development time, made with a unilateral decision without any real project management input. Headless chickens don’t make for good developers!!


    Well I am worried I’m just trudging up old ground. I’m quite sure there will be great Euphoria on the board today with this new theme (though personally, having all text shurnk by 20%, the space in which the text goes reduced to under 500px, and the links changed to a light green on a white background are mental decisions – oh and brilliantly going against everything the new WP theme is doing ) . Many will mistake it for bbPress not being an after thought, and development once again being kick started; though you’ll excuse the cynic in me for thinking the roll out of the new theme had as much to do with _ck_ calling Matt out on the WPtavern page as anything else.

    Ha, but then again, maybe thats the real positive here. Welcome back _ck_.

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  • Chip Bennett


    I still shake my head whenever I read that thread.

    I see people who are both genuinely concerned about and desirous to help with the future of bbPress, but also trying their best, as nicely as possible, to offer up deserved, constructive criticism.

    The project seems to have quite a few people willing to contribute; the biggest concern seems to be that the project lacks a leader who is – and this is the critical point – dedicated solely to the bbPress project.

    To use a different metaphor, bbPress has been a rudderless ship for some time. The crew stand by, oars at the ready. Occasionally, the crew hears a report from the Crow’s Nest (“1.1, ahoy! Steer for Email Notifications and Anonymous Posting!”) – but since they cannot see the Captain at the helm, steering the ship, there is little motivation to paddle.

    bbPress is Matt’s baby, and I think everyone appreciates Matt’s development of and continued contribution to bbPress. But likewise, everyone appreciates the many directions in which Matt is pulled, that – rightly and properly – prevent him from dedicating himself solely to bbPress.

    (To stretch the metaphor beyond recognition: Matt is the Commodore, commanding not only the bbPress ship, but also the WordPress ship, the Automattic ship, the ship, etc…)

    What the community here seems to be asking for, then, is for someone to be appointed – or hired, if necessary – to act as the Project Lead (certainly, under Matt’s direction), someone who can be dedicated solely to bbPress, the way Sam Bauers was previously, and the way Andy Peatling and Raphael Mudge are dedicated to BuddyPress and AfterTheDeadline, respectively.

    To Matt: please don’t get discouraged because of, and please don’t be offended by anything said by, the bbPress community. I think all parties involved have the best interests of bbPress at heart, and understand and appreciate both your overall time commitments and your continued contribution to bbPress.

    At the very least, I take the refresh as a sign of new life, and in that sign, I choose to find hope of great things in the near future for bbPress itself.

    Dittos to the above. The Internet is a very emotional place at times. People should understand this.

    bbPress has a lot to offer in terms of a light weight forum.

    BuddyPress has come a long way. When I was trying to use it last year, it in my opinion was not workable. Now, its a streamline plug-in, that works well with WP 3 – thanks to Andy Peatling.

    AfterTheDeadline also turned out super.

    I think if bbPress has one dedicated resource it would be great.

    It looks like (I am not sure) bbPress might go the way of BuddyPress which is a good thing.

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