[theme-reviewers] How to request "grandfathered" exception to WP 3.9 Theme guidelines?

Bruce Wampler weavertheme at gmail.com
Fri Mar 7 00:50:05 UTC 2014

On Thu, Mar 6, 2014 at 2:47 PM, Chip Bennett <chip at chipbennett.net> wrote:

> It appears that you're lumping WAY too much into the scope of what you're
> asking, and way overstating the impact of the guideline. Your issue seems
> to jump around from scripts hooked into wp_head/wp_footer, to markup hooked
> into the template, to Child Themes that use their own scripts.

Maybe we're talking apples and oranges, but I don't think so. I'm talking
about injecting user defined/copied <script>code here</script> into the
middle of the code produced by the standard theme functions header.php and
footer.php. Other than calling wp_head() and wp_footer(), what do they have
to do with the actions wp_head and wp_footer? I'm not talking about
enqueuing scripts. I'm talking about injecting scripts, and my reading of
the standard is that it applies to footer.php and header.php. Is that
wrong? In all of my discussions, I've always said header.php and
footer.php, and my understanding of the clarifications on the make site
were that the no-script requirement applied to all of header.php and

If that is wrong, and it is okay to inject actual <script> directly into
<head>...</head>, plus in the html display portion of the header (e.g.,
surrounding the title, header image, and menus), or in the footer around
the copyright and credits, then we've had a big misunderstanding. But I'm
pretty sure I was crystal clear I was describing injecting JavaScripts in
those sections. If it is understood that those are the content locations
I'm talking about, then my statements about plugins not being able to do
that is 100% accurate and true without any question.

What do you mean by an arbitrary script? For example, my users want to add
a custom webmaster generated Google Search script into the displayed header
right above the menu, or in somewhere the footer area. The want to inject a
script into one of those two places that will display a "Web Award" logo
from an obscure web tracking site. All using copy/pasted JavaScripts. Are
these presentational or content? I don't know. I do know the ONLY way to
get them into those locations is by some kind of code injection, and my
users have had that capability since 2010. These are not theme defined
scripts - they are scripts users have found/created. Or, they want to
temporarily add a <script> to the <head>...</head> section to verify
ownership of their site, for example. (Okay, THAT one could be done by a
general purpose plugin using the wp_head action, but we are still talking
about breaking existing sites by eliminating adding scripts.)

And you may think there is no difference between 3.8 to 3.9, and 3.9 to
4.0, but if you polled everyday users, they will not agree. Going to a new
integer version has traditionally been considered by the vast majority of
computer users to be a BIG DEAL. That may be changing with the advent of
frequent versions of Chrome, Firefox, etc, but I promise you the change
from Windows 7 to Windows 8 was a big deal. It was a big deal when WP 3.0
came out.

> First: how would this change impact a Child Theme? If a Child Theme
> enqueues a script and hooks that script into wp_head (or an appropriate
> sub-hook), then this guideline has no impact on it. A Theme-defined script
> used for presentational purposes is unaffected by this change, whether that
> script is used by a stand-alone Theme or by a Child Theme. The guideline
> only applies to *arbitrary* scripts - that is, scripts that impact site
> functionality and/or are Theme-independent, and are defined by the end user.
> Second: the "step" from 3.8 to 3.9 is *exactly the same* as the "step"
> from 3.9 to 4.0. All three are MAJOR versions of WordPress. As developers,
> we owe it to our users to ensure that they understand the WordPress
> versioning system, so that we don't enable/facilitate users still to be
> using WordPress 3.0, because they mistakenly (and dangerously) believe that
> versions 3.1 through 3.9 are just "decimal" releases.
> Third: this statement is absolutely false:

THIS IS ABSOLUTELY TRUE. NO QUESTION - when considered in the specified
context: the displayed content portions of header.php and footer.php. I
don't understand how you can even challenge the truth of it. I know you've
written a theme, so how can you say it is not true. You cannot change the
content of the displayed header and footer areas with a plugin. It cannot
be done. Show me how if you think it is possible.

> ...although I *still* contend that the idea that this particular feature
> (JavaScript in the site header and footer area (not <head>, but in the
> header.php and footer.php) can *not* be handled by an independent plugin
> of any sort...
This is totally irrelevant to the point I made (although it does applies to
the <head>...</head>, etc. blocks):

> Plugins have equal access to the wp_head and wp_footer hooks, and can hook
> anything into those hooks that a Theme can hook into them.

> theme-reviewers mailing list
> theme-reviewers at lists.wordpress.org
> http://lists.wordpress.org/mailman/listinfo/theme-reviewers
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