[theme-reviewers] Proposal for a new guideline and plugin function

Doug Stewart zamoose at gmail.com
Tue Apr 24 13:49:15 UTC 2012

Robb, Chip:
Your post gives the game away. While there may be 47 HTTP requests
generated by the News theme, as you pointed out, 36(!) of those are
for images. One of your commenters suggested serving static content
from a subdomain or a CDN which would highly benefit your load times.
(By default, browsers are polite and will only request up to 4 HTTP
entities at a time. If you break your images and/or CSS out to a
separate subdomain or CDN, you effectively double the number of
simultaneous requests a browser can make.)

Speed and performance optimization is a complex problem that has no
specific set of solutions and said solutions can vary greatly based
upon your hosting situation.

All of this is to say, I think this concern lies well outside of the
domain of the Theme Review Team and shouldn't enter into the
discussion, let alone be a review criterion.

And when in doubt, WP Super Cache + CloudFlare/MaxCDN/AWS.

On Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 9:41 AM, Chip Bennett <chip at chipbennett.net> wrote:
> Setting aside (for the moment) the proposition to add guidelines regarding
> max HTTP requests/page speed, I want to address quickly your last two
> points:
> URLs are not permanent. The Theme URI was verified to exist and to be
> appropriate at the time of Theme approval. We can neither control, nor
> effectively police, URLs post-approval. (In this case, Justin Tadlock simply
> moved his own Themes back to his own domain, justintadlock.com, when we
> divested himself from DevPress. Nothing underhanded going on there.)
> Also, repository-hosted Themes are not required to be offered with support,
> through the WPORG support forums, the developer's site, or anywhere else.
> Offering commercial support for a free, 100% GPL Theme does not violate
> WPORG policy or Theme review guidelines. (In fact, a developer having a
> vested interest in providing support for a repository-hosted Theme will
> generally provide a *better* support experience for end users.)
> Having addressed those two points, I'm curious what others think about your
> proposed guidelines...
> Chip
> On Tue, Apr 24, 2012 at 6:36 AM, Robb Shecter <robb at weblaws.org> wrote:
>> I propose a guideline for maximum number of http requests generated per
>> single-post and index views. The plugin can test this via a custom YSlow or
>> Page Speed suite. We can have minimum scores for inclusion in the directory
>> as well as the "featured" list in the Admin theme installer.
>> The reason: I had a disastrous experience with one of the featured themes,
>> News. I installed it on a brand new blog. Each page visit caused 47 http
>> requests to the server. A moderately popular link from Reddit crashed my
>> entire server. (Details are in my blog post:
>> http://www.g33klaw.com/2012/04/the-hidden-dangers-of-beautiful-themes/ )
>> Furthermore, the "theme homepage" link on the wordpress.org site is
>> broken, and support seems to only be offered via a for-pay forum. These
>> should also be grounds for exclusion from the directory and featured lists.
>> Robb
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