MassivePress is a coalition of sorts, future plans include WordCon


The proverbial cat is out of the bag. And in this case I suppose the proverbial bag would have a WordPress logo on it. The MassivePress team (that’s Cory Miller, Lisa Sabin-Wilson, Grant Griffiths, Michael Torbert, Jason Schuller, and Carl Hancock) have announced what just what they are up to. The group describe themselves as a “group of entrepreneurs in the WordPress community who have found common ground”, and that MassivePress just formalizes the collaboration they were already in the midst of in various ways. Each entrepreneur will continue to maintain their own separate businesses, but will now be looking to one another for collaborative work and projects.

I was able to sit down with the group and discuss MassivePress a bit last night. The full video of the interview will be up as soon as it’s finished uploading. In the video they described a number of examples where the team already demonstrates collaboration:

  • Jason Schuller and Grant Griffiths are working together to port Press75 themes to Headway.
  • Michael Torbert recommends the group’s themes to his community, and has taught on, Cory Miller’s project.
  • Lisa Sabin-Wilson is launching Allure Themes soon, with the assistance of Cory and iThemes.

The crew also mentioned they will be running big discounts on their MassivePress site, and will continue these sorts of projects from now on.

Not to bury the lead, but another big announcement they had last night is that MassivePress also intends to launch a new WordPress event this year, that they are calling WordCon. WordCon will start with classes online, and will eventually lead to live, in-person events. Their plan, they say, is to help users, business owners, and consultants through this new event. They also stressed that it is different than WordCamps are:

We would like to be clear with the statement that WordCon is not WordCamp … though WordCon is somewhat WordCamp-ish in the way it is aimed toward bringing together community, but in unique and different ways.  We fully intend to continue our ongoing support of, and contributions to, local, home-grown WordCamps (see more below!).  WordCon has a commercial focus and is friendly to business and commercial interests in the WordPress community and intend to reach out and help create a warm and welcoming atmosphere, and learning environment, for those who wish to build a commercial venture around open source development…

Partial proceeds from WordCon will be sent to the WordPress Foundation as well. More information about both MassivePress and WordCon can be found at the new Hurry up, it still has that new site smell!

So how close were you? Is this what you were expecting? And are you interesting in what the group will bring to this new WordCon event? Share in the comments.

11 thoughts on “MassivePress is a coalition of sorts, future plans include WordCon

  1. Wow, this is interesting news.

    I commend you for stretching the principles of business into new realms by introducing a collaborative structure; this could pay huge dividends for these guys. The fundamentals of business teach concepts that keep businesses separate and focus on competing with one another; taking the energy out of these efforts could introduce significant cost-savings and increased revenues.

    Great move guys, what better way than to do this for WP entrepreneurs that are often founded off collaborative communities.

    I likey…:).. I warn you though, you could be starting a new trend..

  2. Given that I’ve talked about WordCon as an official WP event, I wish they wouldn’t use that as their event name. I think it’s going to cause a lot of confusion, especially how they include news on their homepage and talk about donating to the Foundation.

    • I think this article and their announcement press release clears up any confusion. I don’t view this as some sort of official WordPress event, it’s just a conference being put on by several well respected and high profile members of the development community.

      I think it’s great.

      An alternative to WordCamps which have increasingly come under official control and no longer have that grass roots feel to them because the laundry list of rules one must follow and the politics involved in being allowed to organize one.

      It sounds like they are doing something that will benefit their users, the WordPress community as a whole and are giving back monetarily to the WordPress project in the process. How could that possibly be wrong?

      I’m pretty surprised by your reaction Matt. You of all people I would have expected to support something like this. A large group of high profile commercial WordPress developers banding together to put together an event that will benefit the community? Instead you poo poo it? Not cool. Not cool at all.

    • Heh 🙂 remember the end of WordCampUK 2009 Matt? We had the debate at length about trying to merge or complement a corporate WordPress event with a WordCamp-style weekend. It even ended up in the setting up of a mailing list named, you guessed it, ‘WordCon’ 🙂 which was designed to help get the ball rolling.

      In the end I think the people involved in this idea decided it wasn’t a worthwhile market to tap and the idea fell apart as there just isn’t a large enough community in the UK to really push this through to fruition.

      I’m pleased to see the idea of this style event has finally grown into something that will really happen (was only a matter of time really). I think its a great way for WordPress to creep deeper into corporate and public-sector areas.

      As for the name, perhaps they will change it – I never thought much of it, its confusing. Maybe just expand it out to ‘WordConference’.

      • Thats what the “Con” means. Conference. Look at DragonCon, ComicCon, etc. It’s the shortened form. Why the need to expand it?

        If the name was “WordPressCon” it may be confusing and also a trademark violation as “WordPress” is the trademark owned by the Foundation, they don’t own “Word”.

    • I forgot to mention, plenty of sites that focus on WordPress both commercial and non-commercial in nature feature news from pulled from the RSS feed on their sites. This doesn’t have any kind of “official” connotation to it, it’s the beauty of RSS and how plenty of sites utilize them. AllTop has news on their WordPress page. I don’t view it as some sort of official WordPress site anymore than I view seeing news on the MassivePress site. Again, i’m surprised by your reaction. You of all people I would have expected to give something like this the thumbs up.

      I never saw WordCon announced as an official WP event. Talking about it and actually doing it, not to mention registering the domain names to do it, are two different things. In fact I saw a blog post saying WordCon wouldn’t be the official event and that WordCamp San Francisco would be the official event. It even stated in the article that you were the one that was pushing for WordCamp San Francisco and questioning why a different name had to be used.

      Your response and intentions have me puzzled.

      • Hey George, all I was noting was that this isn’t a new idea, quoting myself “was a matter of time” and that we couldn’t get the ball rolling over here.

        I look forward to the event. Shame its over in the US, you guys get all the good WordPress events 🙁

        • Is anything ever a new idea? I’m sure plenty of people have thought about using the name for an event. The idea that Matt was the first to do so makes me chuckle. “Con” isn’t exactly unique in that regard and using “Word” just makes sense because you can’t use “WordPress” for trademark reasons. It’s certainly not a new idea, but what it comes down to is who executes on an idea first.

          Regardless of who executes on the idea, if it is a good event it will benefit the community. It shouldn’t matter who organizes it. Complaining about who is organizing it just sounds silly to me.

          I’m interested in seeing where they go with this, it sounds like a great event being put on by some really cool companies. Hopefully it’s located somewhere that I can get to easily so I can attend. Still have financial considerations, I don’t attend WordCamp’s because traveling for a small event doesn’t make financial sense to me. But a larger conference may be worth my while.

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