Quarterly Updates | Q1 2021

To keep all aware of big projects and efforts across WordPress volunteer teams, each team’s listed representative has shared an update from the start of the year. Listed below are their top priorities, as well as their biggest Wins and Challenges. Have questions? I’ve included a link to each team’s site in the headings.


  • Contacted: @ryokuhi
  • Previous Priority: The main focuses of the AccessibilityAccessibility Accessibility (commonly shortened to a11y) refers to the design of products, devices, services, or environments for people with disabilities. The concept of accessible design ensures both “direct access” (i.e. unassisted) and “indirect access” meaning compatibility with a person’s assistive technology (for example, computer screen readers). (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Accessibility) Team for WordPress 5.6 were:
    • Moving the WordPress Accessibility Coding Standards from WCAGWCAG WCAG is an acronym for Web Content Accessibility Guidelines. These guidelines are helping make sure the internet is accessible to all people no matter how they would need to access the internet (screen-reader, keyboard only, etc) https://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG21/. 2.0 to WCAG 2.1 and improving the documentation to include more resources and describe patterns and antipatterns;
    • Making the new default theme (Twenty Twenty-One) ready for WCAG AAA;
    • Creating a feature pluginFeature Plugin A plugin that was created with the intention of eventually being proposed for inclusion in WordPress Core. See Features as Plugins. to add a tool to generate an Accessibility Statement, as was done with Privacy Policy;
    • Checking the accessibility of the new widgetWidget A WordPress Widget is a small block that performs a specific function. You can add these widgets in sidebars also known as widget-ready areas on your web page. WordPress widgets were originally created to provide a simple and easy-to-use way of giving design and structure control of the WordPress theme to the user. screen in GutenbergGutenberg The Gutenberg project is the new Editor Interface for WordPress. The editor improves the process and experience of creating new content, making writing rich content much simpler. It uses ‘blocks’ to add richness rather than shortcodes, custom HTML etc. https://wordpress.org/gutenberg/.
  • Priority: The team’s focus is to keep a closer eye on Gutenberg in general and on Full Site Editing in particular and to continue work on documentation and accessible patterns.
  • Challenge: The team continues to be challenged with onboarding new contributors so that more people can be involved and get to actively contribute more quickly. In addition, keeping up to date with Gutenberg development, the blockBlock Block is the abstract term used to describe units of markup that, composed together, form the content or layout of a webpage using the WordPress editor. The idea combines concepts of what in the past may have achieved with shortcodes, custom HTML, and embed discovery into a single consistent API and user experience. editor evolves too quickly for the team to cope with it: dedicating a release to fix its accessibility issues instead of adding new features would probably be beneficial to make it really usable for everyone.
  • Big Wins: The creation of working groups inside the team helped in keeping better track of accessibility issues across the project. The mood of the team is high: the environment has been more welcoming, some new contributors joined the team, and collaboration inside and across teams has improved.


  • Contacted: @schlessera
  • Previous Priority:  Our goal is to provide automated PHPPHP PHP (recursive acronym for PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor) is a widely-used open source general-purpose scripting language that is especially suited for web development and can be embedded into HTML. http://php.net/manual/en/intro-whatis.php. Compatibility reports for every theme and 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 in the 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/ repository and the infrastructure needed to create other types of reports once we have a stable version 1.0 of the Tide APIAPI An API or Application Programming Interface is a software intermediary that allows programs to interact with each other and share data in limited, clearly defined ways..
  • Priority: The team is currently working on getting a release out for the WordPress/Requests library; all necessary changes were completed, and only a few updates to the test suite are missing. This release is the last remaining blocker for WP-CLIWP-CLI WP-CLI is the Command Line Interface for WordPress, used to do administrative and development tasks in a programmatic way. The project page is http://wp-cli.org/ https://make.wordpress.org/cli/ 2.5.0, which should be deployedDeploy Launching code from a local development environment to the production web server, so that it's available to visitors. shortly after WordPress/Requests v1.8 is pushed.
  • Big Win: After a lot of back & forth with the testing pipeline regarding Travis and PHP 8, the CLICLI Command Line Interface. Terminal (Bash) in Mac, Command Prompt in Windows, or WP-CLI for WordPress. team is now at the point where the entire test suite has been redone and ported over to GitHubGitHub GitHub is a website that offers online implementation of git repositories that can easily be shared, copied and modified by other developers. Public repositories are free to host, private repositories require a paid subscription. GitHub introduced the concept of the ‘pull request’ where code changes done in branches by contributors can be reviewed and discussed before being merged be the repository owner. https://github.com/ Actions (including the automated deployment), and all the bundled packages pass all of their tests successfully for PHP 8.


  • Contacted: @sippis, @kcristiano
  • Previous Priority: To define 2021 team goals.
  • Priority: Checking in with our Community Deputies and Mentors to see how we can support them and their contributions to the team. Last year the deputy and mentor workload dropped drastically because of event cancellations. That’s why some deputies and mentors might not be up-to-date with all new practices. The Community team is investing in training and activating deputies and mentors to bolster our support of the global community, with an eye towards the end of this year when a larger amount of in-person events are hopefully possible again.
  • Challenges:  
    • We still need to find greater ways to support WordPress contributors, users, and events online.
    • Determining when and how it is safe to return to in-person WordCamps.
    • Getting the team, contributors, and program ready for a greater return of in-person events after a long break.
  • Big Win: Finalizing the 2021 WordPress Global Community Sponsorship program, which looks a lot different than usual because the global pandemic affected heavily what we can offer to sponsors.


  • Contacted: @francina, @audrasjb
  • Previous Priority: Set up and ship WordPress 5.7.
  • Priority:
    • Set up WordPress 5.8 according to FSE go/no-go decision.
    • Ship WordPress 5.7.1, which contains several fixes for 5.7. Set up the next 5.7.x iterations.
    • Find new coreCore Core is the set of software required to run WordPress. The Core Development Team builds WordPress. committers and new component maintainers.
  • Challenge: The team struggles with working with a small number of core committer and component maintainers.
  • Big Win
    •  Shipped WordPress 5.7!
    • Week in Core blog posts shows that more and more new contributors are joining.
    • Onboard new core-committers: @davidb, @williampatton, and @clorith commit access was approved by the project lead.


  • Contacted: @estelaris, @chaion07
  • Previous Priority: The team is focused on moving old TracTrac Trac is the place where contributors create issues for bugs or feature requests much like GitHub.https://core.trac.wordpress.org/. tickets and PRs forward.
  • Priority:  To initiate an APAC-Friendly Working Hour.
  • Challenge: The team is catching up with FSE and other relevant components of the releases.
  • Big Win: The Design team’s engagement with new contributors added to the Team for Note-taking and other focuses.


  • Contacted: @milana_cap
  • Previous Priority: To develop an overall documentation information architecture; improve discoverability & usability on all documentation; Refine the “getting started” processes (video and text) for onboarding of contributors; apply the external linking policy in Plugin Developer Handbook; Google Season of Docs projects.
  • Priority: Applying a new style guide and external linking policy to existing documentation and improving UXUX UX is an acronym for User Experience - the way the user uses the UI. Think ‘what they are doing’ and less about how they do it. for end-user documentation based on new designs. The team is still refining the “getting started” processes (video and text) to onboarding contributors. Finally, we will begin documentation on Full Site Editing as soon as possible.
  • Challenge: Some challenges the team is encountering include: tools and workflows are sometimes not working as expected and sometimes are overwhelming, which requires too much effort for small improvements; collaboration with other teams and keeping up with new features and releases; the pace of making decisions and responsiveness of team members when their action (opinions/comments) on p2 posts is requested.
  • Big Win: The team had a fair amount of wins: Google Season of Docs successfully finished project; Plugin handbook is being reviewed for external linking policy; communication with Full Site Editing team is slowly happening, and new designs for end-user documentation are nearly finished.


  • Contacted: @javiercasaras,
  • Previous Priority: Priorities included PHP 8 Compatibility for distributed hosting tests, helping inactive test reporters start reporting again, and improving the process.
  • Priority: The team’s focus is on helping inactive test reporters start reporting again, the first steps towards GitHub Actions. The team is also creating a new format called “WP Hosting Live;” it will be a global meetupMeetup All local/regional gatherings that are officially a part of the WordPress world but are not WordCamps are organized through https://www.meetup.com/. A meetup is typically a chance for local WordPress users to get together and share new ideas and seek help from one another. Searching for ‘WordPress’ on meetup.com will help you find options in your area. group focused on hosting professionals.
  • Big Win: Three big wins for the Hosting team: PHP8 Support for test runner, New Format “WP Hosting Live,” and new Team Reps.


  • Contacted: @webcommsat, @yvettesonneveld, @meher, @maedahbatool, @harryjackson1221, @mikerbg, @OGlekler, @lmurillom, @nalininonstopnewsuk
  • Previous Priority: Continue to support the Learn WordPress resource; assisting Polyglots with materials to encourage and sustain contributions; establish a series of contributor introductory training sessions and ongoing work on contributor event marcomms materials; and training for team members.
  • Priority: The current priority is to continue to support Learn WordPress, Full Site Editing, and WPDiversity initiatives, provide communications support to Community’s newsletters, and plan with Polyglots ways to raise interest and awareness around key mini translation events around a central focus. Ongoing contributor event marcomms and joint working with WCEU and others. Maintaining support for new contributors and inclusion in the team.
  • Challenge: Sustainable contribution at a time of pandemic and its effect, identifying gaps and solutions relating to the role and benefit of marcomms within the project using available tools.
  • Big Win: Developing marcomms strategy and long-term planning for People of WordPress, ongoing internal awareness-raising on FSE and support to release teams, trialing inclusion measures for greater participation and to reduce access barriers, and enabling greater asynchronous contribution.


  • Contacted: @tellyworth @coffee2code
  • Previous Priority: Focus on handling incoming tickets faster, and maintain the overall level of open tickets.
  • Priority: To focus on handling incoming tickets faster while continuing our recently implemented component-specific focuses and maintaining the overall level of open tickets.
  • Challenge: There are many open tickets, often old, comprising mainly esoteric requests and feature requests for large and medium projects.
  • Big Win: The team updated the handbooks plugin to support importing content from a remote source (e.g., GitHub) and improved support for multi-handbook sites, which facilitated the implementation of the Documentation Style Guide and reorganization of the Block Editor Handbook.


  • Contacted: Yael Rubenstein and @bummytime
  • Previous Priority: Port core blocks to reach 100% coverage on non-FSE blocks.
  • Priority: Mobile is focused on editor onboarding, porting core blocks, block picker improvements, dual-licensing Gutenberg to increase adoption and contributions, basic Global Styles Support, and adding the ability to add block patterns.
  • Challenge: Fixing regressions, some projects turned out more technically challenging than originally thought.
  • Big Win: Audio block support.


  • Contacted: @nao, @ocean90, @casiepa, @tobifjellner, @evarlese
  • Previous Priority: The team’s current priority is to help identify struggles for contributors and work on resources or tooling to streamline the workload for under-resourced teams.
  • Priority: We’ve published Polyglots TeamPolyglots Team Polyglots Team is a group of multilingual translators who work on translating plugins, themes, documentation, and front-facing marketing copy. https://make.wordpress.org/polyglots/teams/. Plans for 2021 with three focus areas (improving translator/editor communication, promoting team growth, and clarifying the translation approval process).
  • Challenge
    • The organizational structure of translation/adaptation for HelpHub, Learn, Marketing needs to be better clarified.
    • We have a high number of pending requests for new locales that need to be vetted and acted upon.
  • Big Win: 75 locale packages released for WP 5.7, +18 since the last report, largely thanks to the adjustment in translation requirements for core language packs.


  • Contacted: @whyisjake
  • Previous Priority: The security team is preparing for a pending security release. There is ongoing work related to migrating older branches of WordPress to Github actions for automated testing, as Travis is no longer available. The team also has a proposal out to drop support for older versions of WordPress.
  • Priority: Right now, the team is shifting the release process to have a central person that manages all of the minor releases for each major version of WordPress; see more here. After completing the work to get automated testing working on each version of WordPress, all the way back to 3.7, we can now confidently release those versions with full test coverage.
  • Challenge: Working with security reporters on deadlines for known issues.
  • Big Win: @peterwilsoncc wrangling the 5.7 minor releaseMinor Release A set of releases or versions having the same minor version number may be collectively referred to as .x , for example version 5.2.x to refer to versions 5.2, 5.2.1, 5.2.3, and all other versions in the 5.2 (five dot two) branch of that software. Minor Releases often make improvements to existing features and functionality. process!


  • Contacted: @Clorith
  • Previous Priority: To land actionable plans for forums landing page (done).
  • Priority:
    • To prepare for the site editing experience and expected increase in questions post-update relating to this specifically.
    • Improve the available controls for various user groups on the forums.
  • Challenge: Site editing preparations are not always easy before the feature is finalized. Maintaining the momentum of enhancements landing for support-related tickets outside of metaMeta Meta is a term that refers to the inside workings of a group. For us, this is the team that works on internal WordPress sites like WordCamp Central and Make WordPress. focus sprints.
  • Big Win: Meta teams focused development time helped landed a lot of support-related tickets during Q1


  • Contacted: @williampatton @kafleg @acosmin @acalfieri @aristath @poena
  • Previous Priority: Helping theme authors transition to more block-based themes.
  • Priority: Helping theme authors transition to more block-based themes.
  • Challenge: Making the changes according to plan and reduce the theme requirements.
  • Big Win: The team has an actionable plan for the future, a better meta environment to test on.


  • Contacted: @derekherman, @jeffpaul
  • Previous Priority:  Our goal is to provide automated PHP Compatibility reports for every theme and plugin in the WordPress.org repository and the infrastructure needed to create other types of reports once we have a stable version 1.0 of the Tide API.
  • Priority: The team’s current goal is to finish documentation and testing of Tide refactoring to Node and integration with PHP Compatibility Checker plugin.
  • Challenge: There are a limited number of contributors with Golang experience to help with refactoring out of Golang to Node, but post-refactoring, the hope is more will be able to contribute with the codebase in Node.
  • Big Win: Partnership with WP Engine to help integrate refactored Tide endpoints to PHP Compatibility Checker plugin.


  • Contacted: @courane01 and @azhiyadev
  • Previous Priority: The team introduced a sprint approach for 2021. Priorities for the first sprint included revising all team procedures/handbooks as a solid foundation, documenting how brands are represented on Learn, and evaluating options for slide presentations.
  • Priority
    • Brand guidelines and options for slide presentations as well as those identified in our April sprint.
    • A high-level curriculum roadmap encompassing programming languages and build tools for those wishing to pursue WordPress-related development. This will help plan ongoing training materials on Learn. 
  • Challenge: Personal issues and the pandemic have impacted the resources available this quarter to get the brand guidelines and tool for slides presentation drafted for discussion amongst the wider community. The team has done work on this and hopes to conclude this coming quarter as we have a lot of lesson plans that could be published once this has been agreed upon.
  • Big Win: 
    • Introduced monthly sprints in March.
    • Updated the Training handbook and will continue to work on our procedure for getting lesson plans onto Learn WordPress.
    • Learn WordPress handbook has also been published, led by the Community team with input from the Training team. Both handbooks will continue to progress as we improve the way that we work.
    • Worked with the Community to establish a Learn Working Group.


  • Contacted: Jonathan Desrosiers (@desrosj) & Sergey Biryukov (@sergey)
  • Previous Priority: Limit the total number of tickets in Trac, and ensure that every ticket is accurate and actionable. 
  • Priority: Continue to bring the total number of tickets in Trac down to a more reasonable number and/or ensure that every ticket is accurate and actionable (especially really old and really new tickets).
  • Challenge: The main team members have had their resources consumed by a combination of various active roles in recent releases, overarching project tasks (migrating automated testing to GitHub Actions, etc.), and new contributor mentoring. An additional challenge has been striking the right balance between documentation (to better allow other contributors with much less time to contribute to the overall goal) and action (performing triage efforts ourselves).


  • Contacted: @nishasingh, @casiepa, @rahuldsarker
  • Priority: Collection of the WordCampWordCamp WordCamps are casual, locally-organized conferences covering everything related to WordPress. They're one of the places where the WordPress community comes together to teach one another what they’ve learned throughout the year and share the joy. Learn more. videos from organizers for publication and to correct the speaker’s name and tags of submitted/ published videos. 
  • Previous Priority: Collection of the WordCamp videos from organizers for publication and to correct the speaker’s name and tags of submitted/ published videos.
  • Challenge: The lack of volunteers who can work with us is a present challenge.
  • Big Win: The team submitting subtitles for videos.

With thanks to team reps for their quarterly updates.