Become a Reviewer

So you want to be a theme reviewer? That’s great. The team is open to anyone and you can easily get started following these steps.

  1. Create a WordPress.org user account or login.
  2. Join SlackSlack Slack is a Collaborative Group Chat Platform https://slack.com/. The WordPress community has its own Slack Channel at https://make.wordpress.org/chat/.. Visit chat.wordpress.org and sign up using your WordPress.orgWordPress.org The community site where WordPress code is created and shared by the users. This is where you can download the source code for WordPress core, plugins and themes as well as the central location for community conversations and organization. https://wordpress.org/ user account. You can then join the theme review team in #themereview. All our meetings are done in Slack. Checkout when our next one will be.
  3. Subscribe to the blog on make.wordpress.org/themes. Being subscribed to this blog lets you keep in touch with the team and updates.
  4. Set up your testing environment.
    • First up, you will need a testing installation. You can use any WordPress test installation. We advise at the start that you follow this guide on setting up VVV but it is not required.
    • Import the theme unit test data into your installation. This gives you all the content to help to run tests.
    • Set WP_DEBUG to 'true' in your wp-config.php file.
    • Install the following Plugins (Note: all plugins below can be installed via the Developer pluginPlugin A plugin is a piece of software containing a group of functions that can be added to a WordPress website. They can extend functionality or add new features to your WordPress websites. WordPress plugins are written in the PHP programming language and integrate seamlessly with WordPress. These can be free in the WordPress.org Plugin Directory https://wordpress.org/plugins/ or can be cost-based plugin from a third-party except the theme snifferTheme Sniffer Theme Sniffer is a plugin utilizing custom sniffs for PHP_CodeSniffer that statically analyzes your theme and ensures that it adheres to WordPress coding conventions, as well as checking your code against PHP version compatibility. The plugin is available from the plugin directory and Github. Themes are not required to pass the Theme Sniffer scan without warnings or errors to be included in the theme directory.):
  5. Read through the requirements that the theme needs to pass to be approved, as well as the examples.
  6. Introduce your self in the Slack channel and Request a theme to start reviewing. See a list of the themes that are assigned to you.
  7. Do your review! See the suggested ticket format below.
    Please remember that we do not review design.  The focus of your review should be security. We only require design changes if something is broken or unusable.
  8. Be sure not to close your ticket. Leave it open for the author’s changes in response to your review.
  9. Approve the theme once it passes all of the requirements.
  10. Once the ticket is approved one of the experienced reviewers will go over the ticket.

Once you have done enough theme reviews to be comfortable with the process and guidelines, you will be added to the “Reviewers” group, which will enable you to assign and close tickets yourself.

Every reviewer has their own workflows. This section is designed to shed some insight into common aspects of the being a reviewer. Here we will add more resources over time. To start we have information on the queues and a suggested ticket format.

Also see Theme review process and Working with Trac.

Suggested ticket format

When you write your ticket response to a theme here is a suggested way of doing that:

  • ‘Welcome wrapper’. Say Hi to the author, let them know what you are going to do. This may be their first review.
  • Say the outcome. Let the author know from the start what the outcome is.
  • Required. List all the required items, a theme can’t be approved until all of these are met.
  • Recommended. You can then list all the recommended items. These won’t be a grounds to not approve, but they are good theme practice.
  • Notes. This could be a section where you add design notes, maybe additional information. Again, this can’t be something you don’t approve because, but it can be a way to educate.
  • Say what is going to happen next. Keeping the author informed is great. Let them know you will let them upload a new version or what the approval process is.

Using the headings ‘Required, Recommended and Notes’ is really helpful for people when viewing the review.