Learning | Writing

A Self-Indulgent Rant on the WordPress Change to Block Editor

I started writing this blog using Blogger, which was free but very limited in what I could create. I switched to WordPress and started paying for the privilege because I enjoyed using it and liked the creative challenge of building a website that I liked. Alexandersmap.com is still a work in progress and still amateurish by many standards, but it generally works for me and hopefully for you too.

Then WordPress started pushing harder on the Block Editor, which is lovely, but seemed intrusive to me. Why force tools on people just because you fall in love with them as a company? That seems a bit too Apple to me… and yet here we are: force-fed, beginning today. To their credit, WordPress gives you two paths back to what you started with, but that means you’ve got to do the work to change things back to what you had versus having you opt in to their Block Editor experience. I’ve opted out for a long time for a reason, but then they forced my hand anyway. Thanks WordPress.

Complicating my feelings on the matter are a new issue of uploading media to a post that started occurring when Block Editor was unceremoniously shoved into my lap. Perhaps they’re two separate things, but I don’t believe in coincidence. And don’t enjoy having to tackle my own technical support instead of simply writing, which is what I signed up for with WordPress. If a platform charges you money but eliminates the simplicity of why you started paying to use their product, is it still worth paying them money?

This all makes me sound like a curmudgeon, and sure, I’ll take that categorization in this case even if I haven’t reached the minimum age limit for curmudgeon membership. For all the problems in the world having Block Editor forced on the paying customers of WordPress doesn’t seem like that big a deal, right? Right. And yet it seems an affront anyway. With a hint of we know what’s best for you smugness.

I’m writing this post using Block Editor. Its not bad, just different. Who knows – maybe I’ll fall in love with it? Maybe I’ll figure out why my mobile uploads suddenly don’t work anymore? Maybe I’ll figure out how to select all and copy to another post? Maybe drafts will suddenly speed up again instead of taking forever to upload? Maybe. But I like WordPress a little less than I once did. Not because of Block Editor, but because they changed the tools on me whether I opted in or not. Again, it strikes me as a smug corporate move. Surely that doesn’t make a bit of difference to them, but hey, if enough of us complain maybe they’ll listen? No? Anyway, this post is completely self-indulgent, but my original post has been stuck in limbo while I try to figure out the mess I’ve been handed.

Ultimately this is an exercise in handling change. There’s been a lot of change in 2020, and this is just one more. A good life lesson in handling minor inconvenience and finding creative ways to deal with it. And that’s what this post is really all about – approaching a hurdle thrown in my lane and finding a way to clear it without face-planting into the asphalt. Maybe tomorrow’s post will feature beautiful media and precisely-formatted content? One can hope.

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One Comment

  1. Enjoy your indulgence. Software is created by imperfect humans. I always console myself by saying _someone_ must find this [name your issue] somehow useful. Garbage in – Garbage out. They also make us pay for bugs. Sometimes it’s just fun to complain about things we can’t help, and then apply a bit of satire 🙂

    Some things in life are bad
    They can really make you mad
    Other things just make you swear and curse
    When you’re chewing on life’s gristle…

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