[wp-meta] [Making WordPress.org] #5500: Remove the current https://wordpress.org/hosting/ page?
noreply at wordpress.org
Wed Nov 4 20:42:58 UTC 2020
#5500: Remove the current https://wordpress.org/hosting/ page?
Reporter: jadonn | Owner: (none)
Type: defect | Status: new
Priority: normal | Milestone:
Component: General | Keywords:
I recognize this may be a controversial subject. There has been a good
deal of talk about revamping the /hosting/ page, but does the
WordPress.org website really need a page on hosting or to make
recommendations about specific hosts?
I am fairly certain a web search will reveal either ads for hosting
providers, guides for how to select hosting providers, or the hosting
providers' websites themselves.
I want to make sure the potential value the /hosting/ page provides to the
community is greater than the potential costs to the WordPress community.
The page in its current form, for example, is not very user-centric. It
talks about how great the listed hosting providers are and their
particular features, but it does not ask important questions about the
user's needs or why the user is looking at WordPress in the first place.
Is the user creating a website for a business? Is the user creating a
blog? Is the user making a news website for the user's after-hours
underwater basket weaving team?
I think the page, at least as it is written or intended, leaves too much
of a possibility for hosts who are not on the list (regardless of who is
on the list now) to feel rejected. Here is what is currently heading the
There are hundreds of thousands of web hosts out there, the vast majority
of which meet the WordPress minimum requirements, and choosing one from
the crowd can be a chore. Just like flowers need the right environment to
grow, WordPress works best when it’s in a rich hosting environment.
We’ve dealt with more hosts than you can imagine; in our opinion, the
hosts below represent some of the best and brightest of the hosting world.
If you do decide to go with one of the hosts below and click through from
this page, some will donate a portion of your fee back—so you can have a
great host and support WordPress.org at the same time. If you don’t need
the flexibility of a full web host, you may consider getting a free blog
I feel like the first section calls WordPress hosts indistinguishable
precisely because they are compatible with WordPress. These ''perfectly
valid, WordPress compatible hosts'' are also not the best environment for
your special flowers/websites.
The section paragraph makes clear there is some kind of criteria for
inclusion on this page, but those criteria and the process for inclusion
on this page have been notoriously opaque to the best of my understanding.
The second section also makes clear there is a financial component to
inclusion on the page. I am not necessarily opposed to WordPress.org
receiving donations, but this sounds like the same kind of pay-to-play
unfairness that the late net neutrality rules were meant to address. I do
not think WordPress.org should be in a position to extract rent from hosts
in order to receive a sanction or official endorsement.
I grant the second paragraph does have a small call out for making a free
blog if you do not need full hosting; however, after seeing
[https://meta.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/5473 this ticket for a small tweak
to the language on that page], I have concerns about WordPress.org being a
vehicle for secretly advertising for certain providers. That tweak would
have made a much stronger promotion for WordPress.com than is currently in
the page's language. That ticket's original proposal has been modified
based on feedback of the community to be less of a promotion of
WordPress.com, but I still have reservations about this page narrowing the
distance between WordPress.org and WordPress.com.
For my part, I think the page does not provide enough value to potential
WordPress users who could find more detailed, more use-case, more user-
centric information elsewhere on the Internet. I also more generally have
concerns about there simply not being enough resources or strong enough
processes in place to manage the /hosting/ page over the long term,
especially since that seems to be the case already.
If there has to be a /hosting/ page, I would love to see it become an
informational page that does not pick one host over another and that
focuses on letting users find their own "best host" that best fits their
particular needs. Not all WordPress users are the same, and not all hosts
are the same. It would be great for hosts and users who fit well to bring
them together. In my experience, users and service providers are together
much happier and more successful when they have a really good fit for the
user's problem and the provider's solution.
If removing this page is not workable, and there are not resources for
keeping an up to date list of hosts, perhaps the best path would be to
give users a list of questions or considerations to help them understand
their own use case better in relation to hosting. I think this approach
could be technology or solution specific and not provider specific.
For example, ask the user, does your website get a lot of traffic? If yes,
WordPress is great for busy sites, but make sure you look for a host with
PHP OpCache, page caching, or other specific performance optimizations to
help your website handle the traffic.
I welcome feedback on this question and how the /hosting/ page can be made
to serve new and potential WordPress users better. I also look forward to
getting a better understanding of the purpose this page currently has and
how it functions, especially if I'm way off in my understanding.
Ticket URL: <https://meta.trac.wordpress.org/ticket/5500>
Making WordPress.org <https://meta.trac.wordpress.org/>
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