WordPress 5.3 “Kirk”

Posted by download | Posted in Software | Posted on 12-11-2019

Album cover for WordPress 5.3 Kirk, showcasing a duotone red/cream Rahsaan Roland Kirk playing the saxophone on a red background.

Introducing our most refined user experience with the improved block editor in WordPress 5.3! Named “Kirk” in honour of jazz multi-instrumentalist Rahsaan Roland Kirk, the latest and greatest version of WordPress is available for download or update in your dashboard.

5.3 expands and refines the block editor with more intuitive interactions and improved accessibility. New features in the editor increase design freedoms, provide additional layout options and style variations to allow designers more control over the look of a site.

This release also introduces the Twenty Twenty theme giving the user more design flexibility and integration with the block editor. Creating beautiful web pages and advanced layouts has never been easier.


Block Editor Improvements

This enhancement-focused update introduces over 150 new features and usability improvements, including improved large image support for uploading non-optimized, high-resolution pictures taken from your smartphone or other high-quality cameras. Combined with larger default image sizes, pictures always look their best.

Accessibility improvements include the integration of block editor styles in the admin interface. These improved styles fix many accessibility issues: color contrast on form fields and buttons, consistency between editor and admin interfaces, new snackbar notices, standardizing to the default WordPress color scheme, and the introduction of Motion to make interacting with your blocks feel swift and natural.

For people who use a keyboard to navigate the dashboard, the block editor now has a Navigation mode. This lets you jump from block to block without tabbing through every part of the block controls.


Expanded Design Flexibility

WordPress 5.3 adds even more robust tools for creating amazing designs.

  • The new Group block lets you easily divide your page into colorful sections.
  • The Columns block now supports fixed column widths.
  • The new predefined layouts make it a cinch to arrange content into advanced designs.
  • Heading blocks now offer controls for text and background color.
  • Additional style options allow you to set your preferred style for any block that supports this feature.

Introducing Twenty Twenty

A desktop preview of the Twenty Twenty theme, showing both the front-end and the editor view.
A mobile image of the Twenty Twenty  theme, over a decorative backgorund of brown-grey bars.

As the block editor celebrates its first birthday, we are proud that Twenty Twenty is designed with flexibility at its core. Show off your services or products with a combination of columns, groups, and media blocks. Set your content to wide or full alignment for dynamic and engaging layouts. Or let your thoughts be the star with a centered content column!

As befits a theme called Twenty Twenty, clarity and readability is also a big focus. The theme includes the typeface Inter, designed by Rasmus Andersson. Inter comes in a Variable Font version, a first for default themes, which keeps load times short by containing all weights and styles of Inter in just two font files.


Improvements for Everyone

An icon showing an arrow rotating a square.

Automatic Image Rotation

Your images will be correctly rotated upon upload according to the embedded orientation data. This feature was first proposed nine years ago and made possible through the perseverance of many dedicated contributors.

A plus in a square, indicating health.

Improved Site Health Checks

The improvements introduced in 5.3 make it even easier to identify issues. Expanded recommendations highlight areas that may need troubleshooting on your site from the Health Check screen.

A email icon.

Admin Email Verification

You’ll now be periodically asked to confirm that your admin email address is up to date when you log in as an administrator. This reduces the chance of getting locked out of your site if you change your email address.


For Developers

Date/Time Component Fixes

Developers can now work with dates and timezones in a more reliable way. Date and time functionality has received a number of new API functions for unified timezone retrieval and PHP interoperability, as well as many bug fixes.

PHP 7.4 Compatibility

WordPress 5.3 aims to fully support PHP 7.4. This release contains multiple changes to remove deprecated functionality and ensure compatibility. WordPress continues to encourage all users to run the latest and greatest versions of PHP.

The Squad

This release was led by Matt MullenwegFrancesca Marano, and David Baumwald. They were enthusiastically supported by a large release squad:

The squad was joined throughout the twelve week release cycle by 645 generous volunteer contributors (our largest group of contributors to date) who collectively fixed 658 bugs.

Put on a Rahsaan Roland Kirk playlist, click that update button, and check the profiles of the fine folks that helped:

123host, 1994rstefan, 5hel2l2y, @irsdl, Aaron D. Campbell, Aaron Jorbin, Aashish S, Abhijit Rakas, abrightclearweb, acalfieri, acosmin, Adam Silverstein, Adam Soucie, Adhitya Rachman, ahdeubzer, Ahmad Awais, Ajay Ghaghretiya, Ajit Bohra, ajlende, Akira Tachibana, albertomake, Alex Concha, Alex Dimitrov, Alex Lion, Alex Sanford, Alexander Botteram, Alexandre D'Eschambeault, Alexandru Vornicescu, alexeyskr, alextran, Ali Ayubi, allancole, Allen Snook, Alvaro Gois dos Santos, Amanda Rush, amolv, Anders Norén, Andrea Fercia, Andrea Gandino, Andrea Grillo, Andrea Middleton, Andreas Brain, Andrei Draganescu, Andrew Duthie, Andrew Nacin, Andrew Nevins, Andrew Ozz, Andrew Taylor, Andrey Savchenko, Andrés Maneiro, Andy Fragen, Andy Meerwaldt, Angela Gibson, Anh Tran, anischarolia, Anthony Burchell, Anton Timmermans, Apermo, Arafat Rahman, arena, Ari Stathopoulos, Arun Sathiya, Asad, asadkn, Ashar Irfan, ashwinpc, Aslam Shekh, atlasmahesh, au87, Aubrey Portwood, augustuswm, Aurooba Ahmed, Avina Patel, Axel DUCORON, Ayesh Karunaratne, backermann1978, Bartosz Romanowski, Bego Mario Garde, Benjamin Intal, Benjamin Zekavica, bennemann, bgermann, Bhaktii Rajdev, bibliofille, Biranit, Birgir Erlendsson, bitcomplex, BjornW, boblinthorst, Boone Gorges, Boro Sitnikovski, Bradley Jacobs, Bradley Taylor, Brandon Kraft, Brent Swisher, Bronson Quick, bsetiawan88, Burhan Nasir, Carlos Bravo, Carolina Nymark, Catalin Dogaru, Cathi Bosco, Chandra Patel, Charlie Merland, Chetan Prajapati, Chetan Satasiya, Chico, Chintan hingrajiya, ChriCo, Chris Aprea, Chris Van Patten, Christian Chung, Christian Wach, christianoliff, Christoph Herr, cleancoded, cmagrin, codesue, CompileNix, Corey Salzano, courtney0burton, Cristiano Zanca, Csaba (LittleBigThings), D.S. Webster, daleharrison, Dan Foley, Dan Jones, DanBUK, Daniel Bachhuber, Daniel Jalkut (Red Sweater), Daniel James, Daniel Llewellyn, Daniel Richards, danieliser, daniloercoli, Danny van Kooten, Darren Ethier, darthhexx, Dave Parker, Dave Smith, Dave Whitley, davetgreen, David Aguilera, David Anderson, David Binovec, David Binovec, David Decker, David Herrera, David Rozando, David Shanske, daxelrod, Debabrata Karfa, Deni, Denis Cherniavsky, Denis Yanchevskiy, Dennis, Dennis Hipp, Dennis Snell, Derek Sifford, derweili, dfangstrom, Dharmin Shah, Dhaval kasavala, dhuyvetter, Diane Co, DiedeExterkate, Diego La Monica, digitalapps, Dilip Bheda, Dima, dingo-d, Dion Hulse, Dixita Dusara, Dominik Schilling, Drew Jaynes, Dukex, dushanthi, EcoTechie, Edi Amin, Eduardo Toledo, Ella van Durpe, Elliot Condon, Emerson Maningo, Emil Dotsev, Emil Uzelac, Enrique Piqueras, Enrique Sánchez, erikkroes, estelaris, evalarumbe, faazshift, Fabian Kägy, fblaser, Felipe Elia, Felix Arntz, Fencer04, flipkeijzer, Florian TIAR, Foysal Remon, Gal Baras, Garrett Hyder, Garth Mortensen, Gary Jones, Gary Pendergast, Gaurang Dabhi, Gennady Kovshenin, Gesundheit Bewegt GmbH, ghoul, girlieworks, glauberglauber, Glenn, GravityView, gregsullivan, Grzegorz Ziółkowski, gwwar, Hardeep Asrani, Hardik Thakkar, hardipparmar, Hareesh Pillai, Hareesh Pillai, harryfear, harshbarach, haszari, He Yifei, Helen Hou-Sandi, Henry Wright, herbmiller, herregroen, hirofumi2012, HKandulla, Howdy_McGee, hoythan, Hugh Lashbrooke, hypest, Ian Belanger, Ian Dunn, ianmjones, Igor Zinovyev, imath, Imran Sayed, intimez, Ipstenu (Mika Epstein), iqbalbary, Irene Strikkers, Isabel Brison, Ismail El Korchi, J.D. Grimes, jagirbaheshwp, Jake Spurlock, Jalpa Panchal, James Nylen, jameslnewell, janak Kaneriya, Janki Moradiya, janw.oostendorp, jared_smith, jarocks, Jarret, jave.web, javorszky, Jay Swadas, Jaydip, Jean-Baptiste Audras, Jeff Farthing, Jeff Paul, jeichorn, Jen Miller, jenkoian, Jeremy Felt, Jesper van Engelen, Jessica Lyschik, jffng, jikamens, jitendrabanjara1991, jkitchen, jmmathc, joakimsilfverberg, Job, jodamo5, Joe Dolson, Joe Hoyle, Joe McGill, Joen Asmussen, John Blackbourn, John James Jacoby, John Regan, jojotjebaby, Jonathan Champ, Jonathan Davis, Jonathan Desrosiers, Jonathan Goldford, Jonny Harris, Jono Alderson, Joost de Valk, Jorge Bernal, Jorge Costa, Joseph Scott, Josepha Haden, Josh Pollock, Joshua Noyce, JoshuaWold, Joy, jsnajdr, Juanfra Aldasoro, Juhi Patel, Juliette Reinders Folmer, Julio Potier, junktrunk, Justin Ahinon, Justin Tadlock, K. Adam White, kafleg, Kailey (trepmal), Kakshak Kalaria, Kamran Khorsandi, karlgroves, katielgc, kbrownkd, Kelly Dwan, Kelly Hoffman, Kerfred, kero, ketanumretiya030, kevIN kovaDIA, killerbishop, killua99, Kjell Reigstad, Knut Sparhell, kokers, Konstantin Obenland, Konstantinos Xenos, kuus, laurelfulford, lbenicio, leogermani, leonblade, lessbloat, Lindstromer, lllor, lordlod, LoreleiAurora, Luan Ramos, luciano-croce, luigipulcini, luisherranz, Luke, Luke Carbis, Luke Cavanagh, m1tk00, maartenleenders, Maciej Palmowski, Mahesh Waghmare, Maje Media LLC, malthert, manooweb, Manuel Augustin, Manzoor Wani, MarcGuay, Marcin Pietrzak, Marco Martins, MarcosAlexandre, Marcus Kazmierczak, marekhrabe, Marie Comet, Mario Aguiar, Mario Peshev, Marius Jensen, Mark D Wolinski, Mark Jaquith, Mark Uraine, Marko Heijnen, Martin Spatovaliyski, Martin Splitt, Marty Helmick, Mary Baum, masummdar, Mat Gargano, Mat Lipe, Mathieu Sarrasin, Matt Chowning, Matthew Boynes, Matthew Haines-Young, matthias.thiel, mattyrob, Matías Ventura, Maxime Culea, Maxime Jobin, maxme, Meet Makadia, mehidi258, Mehul Kaklotar, Mel Choyce, Melin Edomwonyi, meloniq, Michael Arestad, Michael Babker, Michael Nelson, Michael Panaga, michel.weimerskirch, Michiel Heijmans, Miguel Fonseca, Miguel Vieira, mihaiiceyro, Miina Sikk, Mikael Korpela, Mike Auteri, Mike Glendinning, Mike Hansen, Mike Jolley, Mike Reid, Mike Schroder, MikeNGarrett, Milan Dinić, Mobeen Abdullah, Mohsin Rasool, Monika Rao, Monique Dubbelman, Morgan Kay, Morten Rand-Hendriksen, Morteza Geransayeh, moto hachi ( mt8.biz ), mppfeiffer, mrmadhat, msaggiorato, mtias, Muhammad Afzal, Mukesh Panchal, munyagu, mzorz, nadir, Naveen Kharwar, Nayana Maradia, Ned Zimmerman, Neel Patel, Nextendweb, Niall Kennedy, Nick Daugherty, Nick Halsey, nicolad, Nicolas Juen, Niels de Blaauw, Niels Lange, Nikhil Chavan, nikolastoqnow, Niku Hietanen, Nilambar Sharma, Nishit Langaliya, Nitish Kaila, nmenescardi, noahtallen, notnownikki, Okamoto Hidetaka, Omaar Osmaan, Omar Reiss, onlanka, oxyc, ozmatflc, Paal Joachim Romdahl, Paragon Initiative Enterprises, Paresh Shinde, Pascal Birchler, Pascal Casier, patilvikasj, Patrick Baldwin, Paul Bearne, Paul Biron, Paul Schreiber, Paul Vincent Beigang, Pedro Mendonça, pepe, Peter Wilson, PhillipJohn, Pierre Gordon, pikamander2, Pilar Mera, Pinar Olguc, powerbuoy, Pramod Jodhani, Pratik, Pratik K. Yadav, Prem Tiwari, Presskopp, Priyank Patel, Quantumstate, Raaj Trambadia, Raam Dev, raboodesign, Rahul Vaza, Ramanan, Rami Yushuvaev, ramon fincken, RC Lations, rebasaurus, ReikoDD, Remco Tolsma, retrofox, Riad Benguella, Richard Korthuis, Riddhi Mehta, Rishabh Budhiraja, Robert Anderson, Robert Chapin, Robert Ivanov, rogueresearch, Roi Conde, Ronak Ganatra, Ronny Harbich, Roy Randolph, Roy Tanck, Ryan Boren, Ryan Kienstra, Ryan McCue, Ryan Welcher, Sébastien SERRE, samgordondev, Sami Ahmed Siddiqui, Samir Shah, Samuel Wood (Otto), Sanket Mehta, sarah semark, sarath.ar, saskak, sbardian, Scott Reilly, Sebastian Pisula, Seghir Nadir, Sergey Biryukov, Sergey Predvoditelev, sergiomdgomes, seuser, sgastard, Shady Sharaf, Shamim Hasan, Sharaz Shahid, Shashank Panchal, shawfactor, Shital Marakana, siliconforks, simono, sirreal, Sixes, Slava Abakumov, Slobodan Manic, smerriman, snapfractalpop, socalchristina, Soren Wrede, Spectacula, spenserhale, spuds10, Stanimir Stoyanov, Stefano Minoia, Stephen Bernhardt, Stephen Edgar, Steven Word, studyboi, Subrata Sarkar, Sudhir Yadav, Sultan Nasir Uddin, sun, svanhal, Swapnil V. Patil, swapnild, Sybre Waaijer, Sérgio Estêvão, Takayuki Miyauchi, Takis, Tammie Lister, tazotodua, technote, Tellyworth, Tessa Kriesel, them.es, Themezly, Thijs Hulshof, Thomas Kräftner, thomaswm, Thord D. Hedengren, Thorsten Frommen, Thrijith Thankachan, tigertech, Tim Carr, Tim Havinga, Tim Hengeveld, Timothy Jacobs, timph, tmatsuur, tmdesigned, TobiasBg, toddhalfpenny, Todor Gaidarov, Tom J Nowell, Tommy Ferry, Toni Viemerö, tonybogdanov, Tor-Bjorn Fjellner, torres126, Torsten Landsiedel, Towhidul Islam, trasweb, Travis Northcutt, travisseitler, triplejumper12, truchot, truongwp, Tugdual de Kerviler, Tung Du, Udit Desai, Ulrich, Utsav tilava, Vaishali Panchal, vbaimas, Venutius, Viktor Veljanovski, Vishal Kakadiya, vishitshah, vladlu, Vladut Ilie, vortfu, Vova Feldman, vrimill, w3rkjana, Webdados (Marco Almeida), WebMan Design | Oliver Juhas, Weston Ruter, William Earnhardt, William P. Davis, William Patton, withinboredom, worldweb, yanngarcia, Yannicki, yarnboy, yashar_hv, Yoav Farhi, yodiyo, Yui, Yvette Sonneveld, zaantar, zalak151291, Zebulan Stanphill, Česlav Przywara, Айрат Халитов 🔥, and 水野史土.

Also, many thanks to all of the community volunteers who contribute in the support forums. They answer questions from people across the world, whether they are using WordPress for the first time or since the first release. These releases are more successful for their efforts!

If you want learn more about volunteering with WordPress, check out Make WordPress or the core development blog.


Thanks for choosing WordPress!

A New Way to Earn Money on WordPress.com

Posted by download | Posted in Software | Posted on 12-11-2019

It’s hard to be creative when you’re worried about money. Running ads on your site helps, but for many creators, ad revenue isn’t enough. Top publishers and creators sustain their businesses by building reliable income streams through ongoing contributions.

Our new Recurring Payments feature for WordPress.com and Jetpack-powered sites lets you do just that: it’s a monetization tool for content creators who want to collect repeat contributions from their supporters, and it’s available with any paid plan on WordPress.com.

Let your followers support you with periodic, scheduled payments. Charge for your weekly newsletter, accept monthly donations, sell yearly access to exclusive content — and do it all with an automated payment system.

With recurring payments, you can:

  • Accept ongoing payments from visitors directly on your site.
  • Bill supporters automatically, on a set schedule. Subscribers can cancel anytime from their WordPress.com account.
  • Offer ongoing subscriptions, site memberships, monthly donations, and more, growing your fan base with exclusive content.
  • Integrate your site with Stripe to process payments and collect funds.

Enable Recurring Payments in three steps

Start accepting ongoing payments in just five minutes, without any technical background. 

1. Connect (or create) a Stripe account

WordPress.com partners with Stripe, one of the internet’s biggest payment processors, to make sure transactions are fast and secure. You’ll need a Stripe account to use Recurring Payments. 

Head to your Earn page and click Connect Stripe to Get Started — we’ll walk you through the setup and help you create a Stripe account if you don’t have one.

2. Put a Recurring Payments button on your site

Recurring Payments takes advantage of the powerful block editor. To start collecting revenue, open a post or page, click the (+) to add a new block, and insert a Recurring Payments button.

3. Customize the details of the recurring payment

You can create as many payment plans for your site as you’d like—different currencies, amounts, payment frequencies, and names, so you can offer different tiers or subscriptions.

You can also choose one of your previously created plans when you insert a new button.

Bravo!

You just set up Recurring Payments for your site. Now your fans can support you, just like they do on Longreads.com and around the web.

For more detailed setup instructions, visit the Recurring Payments support page.

So many options to grow your supporter base

With Recurring Payments, you can turn your content into revenue, accept donations, or fund your next big idea. 

  • Sell access to members-only newsletters.
  • Collect club membership dues automatically.
  • Let fans fund your next art project.

Some people even collect rent with recurring payments!

Recurring payments is the latest addition to the monetizing tools found on WordPress.com. Here are the other tools you can find by visiting WordPress.com/earn.

  • Use Simple Payments to take one-time payments, or to sell digital or physical products with minimal configuration.
  • Add WordAds to run advertisements on your site, and earn revenue from your traffic.
  • Move to WooCommerce when you’re ready to create a full shopping experience for visitors — it’s the most customizable online-store platform on the web, with thousands of extensions.

Ready to add Recurring Payments? Head to your site’s Earn section right now.

People of WordPress: Kim Parsell

Posted by download | Posted in Software | Posted on 09-11-2019

You’ve probably heard that WordPress is open-source software, and may know that it’s created and run by volunteers. WordPress enthusiasts share many examples of how WordPress changed people’s lives for the better. This monthly series shares some of those lesser-known, amazing stories.

Meet Kim Parsell

We’d like to introduce you to Kim Parsell. Kim was an active and well-loved member of the WordPress community. Unfortunately, she passed away in 2015. Lovingly referred to as #wpmom, she leaves behind a legacy of service. 

Kim Parsell

How Kim became #wpmom

In order to understand how highly valued the WordPress community was to Kim Parsell, you have to know a bit about her environment.

Kim was a middle-aged woman who lived off a dirt road, on top of a hill, in Southern rural Ohio. She was often by herself, taking care of the property with only a few neighbors up and down the road.

She received internet access from towers that broadcast wireless signals, similar to cell phones but at lower speeds.

Connecting through attending live podcast recordings

By listening to the regular podcast, WordPress Weekly, Kim met members of the WordPress community and was able to talk to them on a weekly basis. The show and its after-hours sessions provided Kim a chance to mingle with the who’s who of WordPress at the time. It helped establish long-lasting relationships that would open up future opportunities for her.

Since she lived in a location where few around her used or had even heard of WordPress, the community was an opportunity for her to be with like-minded people. Kim enjoyed interacting with the community, both online and at WordCamp events, and many community members became her second family, a responsibility she took very seriously.

“Many members of the WordPress community became her second family, a responsibility she took very seriously.”

Jeff Chandler

One of the first women of WordPress

Kim is regarded as one of the first “women of WordPress,” investing a lot of her time in women who wanted to break into tech. She worked hard to create a safe environment sharing herself and her knowledge and was affectionately called #wpmom.

She contributed countless hours of volunteer time, receiving “props” for 5 major releases of WordPress, and was active on the documentation team. 

“Affectionately called #wpmom, Kim was an investor. She invested countless hours into the WordPress project and in women who wanted to break into tech.”

Carrie Dils
Kim at WordCamp San Francisco

Kim Parsell Memorial Scholarship

In 2014, she received a travel stipend offered by the WordPress Foundation that enabled her to attend the WordPress community summit, held in conjunction with WordCamp San Francisco. She shared with anyone who would listen, that this was a life-changing event for her. 

The WordPress Foundation now offers that scholarship in her memory. The Kim Parsell Memorial Scholarship provides funding annually for a woman who contributes to WordPress to attend WordCamp US, a flagship event for the WordPress community.

This scholarship truly is a fitting memorial. Her contributions have been vital to the project. Moreover, the way she treated and encouraged the people around her has been an inspiration to many.  

Her spirit lives on in the people she knew and inspired. Here’s hoping that the Kim Parsell Memorial Scholarship will serve to further inspire those who follow in her footsteps.

Drew Jaynes

Kim is missed, but her spirit continues to live on

Sadly Kim died just a few short months later. But her spirit lives on in the people she knew and inspired within her communities. The Kim Parsell Memorial Scholarship will serve to further inspire those who follow in her footsteps.

Contributors

@wpfiddlybits, @yvettesonneveld, @josephahaden, Topher Derosia, Jeff Chandler, Carrie Dils, Jayvee Arrellano, Jan Dembowski, Drew Jaynes

WordPress 5.3 RC4

Posted by download | Posted in Software | Posted on 06-11-2019

The fourth release candidate for WordPress 5.3 is now available!

WordPress 5.3 is currently scheduled to be released on November 12 2019, but we need your help to get there—if you haven’t tried 5.3 yet, now is the time!

There are two ways to test the WordPress 5.3 release candidate:

For details about what to expect in WordPress 5.3, please see the first,  second and third release candidate posts.

Release Candidate 4 contains three bug fixes for the new default theme, Twenty Twenty (see #48450), and addresses the following:

  • The Twemoji library has been updated from 12.1.2 to 12.1.3 (see #48293).
  • Two regressions in the Media component (see #48451 and #48453).
  • One bug in the Upload component (see #48472)
  • Five bugs in the Block Editor component (see #48502)

Plugin and Theme Developers

Please test your plugins and themes against WordPress 5.3 and update the Tested up to version in the readme to 5.3. If you find compatibility problems, please be sure to post to the support forums so we can figure those out before the final release.

The WordPress 5.3 Field Guide has also been published, which details the major changes.

A new dev note has been published since the Field Guide was released, Use of the “wp_update_attachment_metadata” filter as “upload is complete” hook. Plugin and theme authors are asked to please read this note and make any necessary adjustments to continue working well in WordPress 5.3 or share any difficulties encountered on #48451.

How to Help

Do you speak a language other than English? Help us translate WordPress into more than 100 languages!

If you think you’ve found a bug, you can post to the Alpha/Beta area in the support forums. We’d love to hear from you! If you’re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report, file one on WordPress Trac, where you can also find a list of known bugs.

2019 Annual Survey

Posted by download | Posted in Software | Posted on 02-11-2019

It’s time for our annual user and developer survey! If you’re a WordPress user or professional, we want your feedback.

It only takes a few minutes to fill out the survey, which will provide an overview of how people use WordPress. We’re excited to announce that this year, for the first time, the survey is also available in 5 additional languages: French, German, Japanese, Russian, and Spanish. Many thanks to the community volunteers who helped with the translation effort!

The survey will be open for 4 weeks, and results will be published on this blog. All data will be anonymized: no email addresses or IP addresses will be associated with published results. To learn more about WordPress.org’s privacy practices, check out the privacy policy.

The Month in WordPress: October 2019

Posted by download | Posted in Software | Posted on 01-11-2019

October has been a busy month with preparations for WordCamp US as well as the next major release of WordPress. Read on to find out about all that work and more.


WordPress 5.2.4

On October 14, WordPress 5.2.4 was released as a security release fixing 6 security issues. The fixes were backported to earlier versions of WordPress as well, so they’re available for sites not yet upgraded to 5.2.

This kind of release is only possible because people report security issues responsibly so that the Core team can address them. You can find out more specific information about the fixes on the release documentation page.

Want to get involved in building WordPress Core? Follow the Core team blog, and join the #core channel in the Making WordPress Slack group.

WordPress Style Guide Proposal

Early in the month, the Design team proposed adding a style guide for the WordPress brand that can be used across all of WordPress.org and anywhere the brand is represented. Work then began on putting the style guide together, and the current iteration is now available for viewing.

Work on this style guide is ongoing, and the latest update allows it to support multiple languages so that it can be used by more people.

Want to get involved in contributing to this style guide? You can do so via the GitHub repo, as well as follow the Design team blog, and join the #design channel in the Making WordPress Slack group.

WordPress 5.3

WordPress 5.3 has seen active development over the past month, with a release date set for November 12. You can download and test the release candidate to get a taste of what to expect—this is largely what final release will look like.

This is a big release with a number of exciting and important updates. Among them are significant changes to the look of the admin interface, enhancements to the block editor that will affect developers of themes and plugins, large improvements to the way that Core processes images, updates to cater for some functions specific to PHP 7.4, improvements to the Site Health feature, and many more improvements that are all documented in the WordPress 5.3 Field Guide.

In addition to these Core updates, the upcoming major release will also include the new default theme, Twenty Twenty.

Want to get involved in building WordPress Core? You can contribute by testing the upcoming release, as well as follow the Core team blog, and join the #core channel in the Making WordPress Slack group.

New Core Committers

Three new committers have been added to the WordPress Core organizational structure. Core committers are individuals who have direct access to the Core development code repositories in order to publish updates to the software.

The new committers are Ian Belanger (@ianbelanger), Timothy Jacobs (@timothyblynjacobs), and Joe Dolson (@joedolson). While Ian’s commit access is specifically for Core themes, both Timothy and Joe have full access to Core. This type of access is only given to individuals who have proved themselves with high-quality contributions and a deep understanding of how the WordPress project works.


Further Reading:

Have a story that we should include in the next “Month in WordPress” post? Please submit it here.

WordPress 5.3 RC3

Posted by download | Posted in Software | Posted on 29-10-2019

The third release candidate for WordPress 5.3 is now available!

WordPress 5.3 is currently scheduled to be released on November 12 2019, but we need your help to get there—if you haven’t tried 5.3 yet, now is the time!

There are two ways to test the WordPress 5.3 release candidate:

For details about what to expect in WordPress 5.3, please see the first and second release candidate posts.

Release Candidate 3 contains improvements to the new About page, bug fixes for the new default theme, Twenty Twenty (see #48450), and 9 fixes for the following bugs and regressions:

  • Four bugs in the block editor have been fixed (see #48447).
  • Three Date/Time related bugs have been fixed (see #48384).
  • A regression in date_i18n() has been fixed (see #28636).
  • An accessibility color contrast regression for primary buttons when using alternate admin color schemes was fixed (see #48396).

Plugin and Theme Developers

Please test your plugins and themes against WordPress 5.3 and update the Tested up to version in the readme to 5.3. If you find compatibility problems, please be sure to post to the support forums so we can figure those out before the final release.

The WordPress 5.3 Field Guide has also been published, which details the major changes.

How to Help

Do you speak a language other than English? Help us translate WordPress into more than 100 languages!

If you think you’ve found a bug, you can post to the Alpha/Beta area in the support forums. We’d love to hear from you! If you’re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report, file one on WordPress Trac, where you can also find a list of known bugs.

WordPress 5.3 RC2

Posted by download | Posted in Software | Posted on 22-10-2019

The second release candidate for WordPress 5.3 is now available!

WordPress 5.3 is currently scheduled to be released on November 12 2019, but we need your help to get there—if you haven’t tried 5.3 yet, now is the time!

There are two ways to test the WordPress 5.3 release candidate:

For details about what to expect in WordPress 5.3, please see the first release candidate post.

Release Candidate 2 contains improvements to the new About page, and 10 fixes for the following bugs and regressions:

  • Three bugs contained in RC1 within the block editor have been fixed (see #48381).
  • A bug has been fixed where links within comments did not get the correct rel attribute (see #48022).
  • The scaled- string has been added to file names when images are downsized if determined “BIG” (see #48304).
  • The buttons group layout has been fixed in IE11 (see #48087).
  • A bug with boolean false meta values in the REST API has been fixed (see #48363).
  • The error code encountered when the native PHP JSON extension is missing has been adjusted to be unique (see #47699).
  • When uploading files, HTTP error code support has been expanded to include all 5xx errors (see #48379).

Plugin and Theme Developers

Please test your plugins and themes against WordPress 5.3 and update the Tested up to version in the readme to 5.3. If you find compatibility problems, please be sure to post to the support forums so we can figure those out before the final release.

The WordPress 5.3 Field Guide has also been published, which details the major changes.

How to Help

Do you speak a language other than English? Help us translate WordPress into more than 100 languages!

If you think you’ve found a bug, you can post to the Alpha/Beta area in the support forums. We’d love to hear from you! If you’re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report, file one on WordPress Trac, where you can also find a list of known bugs.

Empowering Generations of Digital Natives

Posted by download | Posted in Software | Posted on 16-10-2019

Technology is changing faster each year. Digital literacy can vary between ages but there are lots of ways different generations can work together and empower each as digital citizens.

No matter whether you’re a parent or caregiver, teacher or mentor, it’s hard to know the best way to teach younger generations the skills needed to be an excellent digital citizen. If you’re not confident about your own tech skills, you may wonder how you can help younger generations become savvy digital citizens. But using technology responsibly is about more than just technical skills. By collaborating across generations, you can also strengthen all your family members’ skills, and offer a shared understanding of what the internet can provide and how to use it to help your neighborhoods and wider society. 

Taking Gen Z Beyond Digital Savvy

Open up the dialogue

Even if you’re not fully confident in your own tech skills, you can help develop digital citizenship skills in others. If you feel comfortable during everyday conversation, you could describe a tech situation you have come across and ask family members if they have ever experienced something similar. You can give them a chance to share how they handled it or how it made them feel. This can help encourage them to think critically and to react with empathy. And being asked for advice can make them feel appreciated and empowered. But opening up the conversation can also be as simple as asking if they’ve seen anything online lately that they found interesting or wanted to talk about.

Share access to free and affordable training

Open source content management systems have made online publishing accessible to a more diverse group of people. Dozens of content platforms offer hands-on training at no or low cost. WordPress.tv, LinkedIn Learning, and others have low-cost video libraries with thousands of recorded talks and workshops and the WordPress Training team have excellent downloadable lesson plans and materials. These platforms not only feature content that helps develop tech and content creation skills but also content around ethics, diversity and community building.  

Find a sense of community and belonging

One of the disadvantages of increased digitalization is that younger generations and us all may spend less time hanging out in-person. Digital time spent with others is no replacement for in-person interactions. The awareness and mutual understanding which comes from back and forth interaction is needed for positive interpersonal skills. This is hard to replace in digital communities and those skills can only be learned with lots of hands-on practice. 

Learn the many benefits of volunteering 

There are WordPress events across the world that provide a great place to learn new skills to share with your families and friends. Some work with schools and colleges to offer special events which are open to all ages. There are also plenty of small ways to volunteer with the WordPress project that can be done at home to practice new skills.

In addition to attending events where you can learn skills and hang out with others with similar interests, the WordPress ecosystem offers countless opportunities to be actively involved. Professionals, hobbyists, and learners all make a difference by contributing to the ongoing creation of the WordPress platform. Together these people, who are known as contributors, form the WordPress open source community. 

WordPress is created by volunteer contributors

Not only are these contributors creating an amazingly flexible platform for all to use, it is an environment where you can continue to improve your skills, both technical and interpersonal. Open-source software projects can introduce you to people you would otherwise not get the chance to meet, locally and internationally. If you have a zest for learning, and for finding others to connect with, WordPress has many ways to meet contributors in person!

WordPress events are organized by volunteers

WordPress community events are volunteer-run. This can be a great way to give back to the project and practice all sorts of skills. Talk to your local event about how you could get involved and if you would like to bring older teenagers and young adults with you. You will not need any pre-existing tech skills to attend these events but they are a great way to discover areas you might want to learn more about. 

Contributor days offer a great opportunity to get involved

These events are specially designed to help you get involved in building the open-source WordPress platform. You can collaborate with other members of its community and find areas that are right for you to use and grow your skills. All of the tasks you will discover at an event can be continued at home and some are easy to get other family members involved in learning and adding in ideas. 

Contributors come from all sorts of backgrounds and locations, some may live near you and others thousands of miles away. Working alongside lots of different cultures and countries can open up new ideas for young people letting them learn new ways of doing things and discover different perspectives. All those different perspectives can cause misunderstandings. But being involved in a global learning community is a great way to practice communicating across cultural boundaries. 

Getting involved can be rewarding in many (unexpected) ways

The most rewarding part of actively taking part in WordPress events is making budding friendships. New connections often turn into long-lasting friendships that are likely to continue for years to come, both online and offline. With a global community, these friendships can potentially lead to lots of international adventures too!

Make our digital world safer and more inclusive

Befriending people from a wide variety of cultures and backgrounds can be an enriching experience in itself. It can also help you make us make more informed decisions. The more we interact with a diverse range of people, the more empathic we become. Some of the most valuable learning that can be offered to Gen Z (and probably to all of us at times) is that what we come across in fast-moving digital communities isn’t always the entire view. 

All things considered….

Anyone who is a digital native may not need encouragement to obtain tech skills. But they may not be aware that digital communities are still communities and we need to use the same sorts of people skills for both offline and online locations. Opening up conversations about situations they may experience online that may require them to (re)act responsibly, can encourage them to think critically and act with empathy. Compared to previous generations, digital natives spend substantially more time by themselves while using devices, so encouraging them to join real-life communities, such as WordPress, could be the first step to learning what it means to be a good digital citizen! 

WordPress 5.3 Release Candidate

Posted by download | Posted in Software | Posted on 15-10-2019

The first release candidate for WordPress 5.3 is now available!

This is an important milestone as we progress toward the WordPress 5.3 release date. “Release Candidate” means that the new version is ready for release, but with millions of users and thousands of plugins and themes, it’s possible something was missed. WordPress 5.3 is currently scheduled to be released on November 12, 2019, but we need your help to get there—if you haven’t tried 5.3 yet, now is the time!

There are two ways to test the WordPress 5.3 release candidate:

What’s in WordPress 5.3?

WordPress 5.3 expands and refines the Block Editor introduced in WordPress 5.0 with new blocks, more intuitive interactions, and improved accessibility. New features in the editor increase design freedoms, provide additional layout options and style variations to allow designers complete control over the look of a site.

This release also introduces the Twenty Twenty theme giving the user more design flexibility and integration with the Block Editor.

In addition, WordPress 5.3 allows developers to work with dates and timezones in a more reliable way and prepares the software to work with PHP 7.4 to be release later this year.

Plugin and Theme Developers

Please test your plugins and themes against WordPress 5.3 and update the Tested up to version in the readme file to 5.3. If you find compatibility problems, please be sure to post to the support forums so we can figure those out before the final release.

The WordPress 5.3 Field Guide will be published within the next 24 hours with a more detailed dive into the major changes.

How to Help

Do you speak a language other than English? Help us translate WordPress into more than 100 languages! This release also marks the hard string freeze point of the 5.3 release schedule.

If you think you’ve found a bug, you can post to the Alpha/Beta area in the support forums. We’d love to hear from you! If you’re comfortable writing a reproducible bug report, file one on WordPress Trac, where you can also find a list of known bugs.