WordPress no longer paving cow paths
A desire path (also known as a desire line, social trail, goat track, pig trail or bootleg trail) can be a path created as a consequence of foot or bicycle traffic. The path usually represents the shortest or most easily navigated route between an origin and destination. Width and erosion severity can be indicators of how much traffic a path receives. Desire paths emerge as shortcuts where constructed ways take a circuitous route, have gaps, or are non-existent. — Wikipedia
Currently there’s another “discussion” raging on the WordPress forums (9 pages and counting). It involves our being forced, almost, into using the New Editor (Beep Beep Boop) instead of the Classic Editor. If you haven’t encountered the changes yet, you will as soon as your current cookies expire. If you previously opted to default to the Classic Editor, you’ll find that default no long works. Try to start a new post, or edit an existing one, and you’ll find yourself facing Beep Beep Baloney again. And this time there won’t be any links to take you on to the Classic Editor. WP Happiness Engineers keep insisting the Classic Editor will still be available; there just won’t be any links to it. (And yet there’s still a link from the old editor to the new …) It’s pretty obvious what they’re trying to do, isn’t it?
One commenter, tpenguinltg, has created a user script that you can install in your browser (using Tampermonkey, GreaseMonkey, or something similar) that will forward you automatically from the New Editor to the Classic Editor, without relying on a cookie, but if you aren’t already into that sort of thing, it might not be easy to implement (I happen to have Tampermonkey installed because I once needed it for something else, but I don’t recall now what was involved).
Oh, and a comment today brought something else to my attention. Apparently WP intends to do away with the revisions feature that the editor has always had. Want to revert to a previous version, or check back on how you phrased something in an earlier draft? Too bad.
We’re being railroaded. Again.
The whole exhausting, infuriating mess reminds me of my post back in 2011, “WordPress: Paving cow paths.” The relevant portion explained something Matt Mullenweg said:
A few days ago WordPress users got a letter from Matt — Matt Mullenweg, WP’s founding developer — reporting on the growth of his baby. In the course of his presentation (“State of the Word 2011″), he spoke of WP’s reliance on “Desire Paths” to determine the company’s direction. He likened it to paving cow paths, something anyone who has ever been on a college campus recognizes immediately. Campus designers can build all the pretty sidewalks they want, but students will create their own paths along the routes they want to use, regardless of where the sidewalks go. Wise planners pave the paths created by the students.
I bought into that — hook, line, and sinker.
But clearly now, WordPress is no longer paving cow paths. The “Desire Paths” of WP’s users are no longer relevant.